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Discussion Starter #1
Well, just checked the oil as I always do, and I've gotten down to about half the dip stick. Any reason why? Every time I've ever checked it before, it always stays at the exact same level. Don't know what happened all of a sudden.
 

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How long since you last checked it? Is it parked level when you check it? How old and how many miles on it? Did you just do a long high speed ride? A little more information may help.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I did a couple of good highway runs. But, I always do. The oil isn't old at all. I ride it 7 days a week and all over at that. It's with in the oil change interval. The light hasn't come on yet. It's got 24,xxx on the whole bike. I checked it on the center stand in my garage. I even let it sit over night to make sure the oil was as level as it could be. I usually check it every tank of gas or so. Just filled up last night and thought it was due for a check. About to open the air box and check in there for excess oil. I run a k&n filter so I always wonder if the oil from the filter is coming down too?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Just pulled out the air filter and couldn't figure out how to get the mesh out of the air box. So, I would really appreciate any help in diagnosing this problem. And btw, how exactly are you to check the oil? Are you supposed to screw it back in or just push it in and pull it out?
 

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Just push it in and pull it out.
 

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Aren't the first gen 400s known to use a bit of oil? Do you usually always check in same manner (before a ride on centerstand, etc)?
 

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Some do, some don't. My 06 never used any oil until it reached about the 35,000 mile mark. Since then it has started using a little but nothing like what others have reported from theirs.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Idk what's going on lately. I know the sliders in the transmission need work done, but that shouldn't effect engine oil. I had put what very small amout of oil I had left into the engine, and it seems ok. Still a little low though. And I always check it in the same manner. Any reason why it would start using oil?
 

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You could be getting a little blow by past the rings or have a valve seal that is allowing a little oil to get past it. You also might just have finally started getting the same issue as others have encountered where the oil is being sucked up the crankcase ventilation system into the air filter.

To be honest I would not worry much about it as long as you are not going from the full to the add oil mark in just a couple of hundred miles.
 

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If you have a pre-06 Burg, it's not uncommon for those models to use up oil, under certain conditions, a lot of oil, like 300ml / 1000Km.

It's because Suzuki goofed up with the crankcase vent, the connection and tube are basically modelled wrong and not only will it vent from the crankcase, under certain conditions (high RPM), it'll siphon oil out of the crankcase into the airfilter box where some of it vapourizes and gets burned again (as is the function of this vent anyway) just not in the amounts you would expect.

Check oil level before every ride is what Suzuki writes in their manual and there isn't an official fix nor has Suzuki said it was a design error.

You better get used to checking the oil a lot, otherwise you'll spend around $1000 for a new cylinder and works, trust me, I know, my Burg blew on the highway a couple of months back....
 

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Extended runs over 7000rpm will cause the oil to fill your air box on older 400's. As stated above it is a slight design flaw in the design of the venting. If this is your problem then under your air filter there will be a lot of oil that is saturating the filter and the bottom of the box. There is a way that some have rerouted the air vent to help stop the loss of oil. Others just avoid long runs over 7000rpm or constantly check their oil levels. It sounds like yours ran very hot if your having trouble getting the "screen" off to check your air filter....It is probably melted somewhat and will need some force to remove it.
Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I can get the air filter out just fine. It's the metal mesh underneath it that I can't seem to get out. And what I'm gathering from this, is that the sliders I installed yesterday to keep the rpm's down should more or less solve this?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
So, I keep getting different readings from the dipstick every time I check the oil. First time after letting it sit overnight on the center stand, it read one x down. Next draw with the same situation, two x down. I went and got oil and checked it again, and it was all the way full. Don't know what I'm doing wrong. Am I supposed to check it hot or cold? Is the center stand enough or do I need it on the tires like the 07+? If I could get some direction it would be great. How do I get under the airfilter? Once I have it off there's a mesh. Can't seem to figure out how to go beyond that.
 

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If you do it by the book you will start the bike and let it run for 3 minutes then turn it off and let it sit a minute before checking the oil. You will also do it with the bike sitting on the wheels. Most of us just check it with it on the center stand. I've checked mine both ways and there is not enough difference in the readings to matter. It reads about 1/8 inch lower sitting on the wheels than it does on the center stand. Knowing that I take the center stand reading and subtract 1/8 inch from it.

Don't know why you keep getting different readings. Mine come out consistent. However it you are checking it sitting on the wheels you may not be holding it exactly straight up vertical every time. Just a little lean left or right can result is a big difference in the reading. To ensure I was holding the bike exactly vertical I put a level across the brake reservoirs and straightened it up until the bubble was centered.

That is one of the reasons I check mine on the center stand. I know it is vertical every time.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
So I took the air filter out again last night and saw a pool of oil in the bottom of the box. How did it get there, and how do I keep it from getting in there. I couldn't get the box out to clean it out, but I took every bolt out of it. Can you only take it out if you take the hoses off with the plastic off? I know this is supposed to be a problem with the older bikes, but what is the fix? I usually always check it on the center stand.
 

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The oil comes from the crankcase vent, its the small tube that ends in the lower part of the airfilter box, on the front IIRC.

There are unofficial fixes for it, try searching for Kfir's fix, that's the one I used.
 

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I don't think anyone has ever come up with a for sure fix. There is a small restrictor inside the hose. You can feel it if you run your hand down the hose. Some say if you push that restrictor down close to the crankcase it will help. Don't know if that is true or not. I'm one of the lucky ones and mine does not have this issue. I did feel for the restrictor in my hose and it is down close to the crankcase so maybe there is some truth to it.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
How do I get to that hose without taking all the plastic off? Or am I stuck having to take all the plastic off to really get in there? Could I just block off that tube completely or will that make too much pressure in the hose?
 

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You will have to at the minimum remove the air cleaner box.

You cannot block it off completely because it is the crankcase vent, like the PCV valve on a car. You need it to release pressure in the crankcase that builds up from blowby on the piston rings.
 
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