BMW R1200GS / R1200 Final Drive Oil Change

BMW R1200GS / R1200 Final Drive Oil Change

Haynes Manuals to AndyW:
Provision for a final drive oil change has indeed been made on BMW R1200 2008 models, with a drain plug fitted to the final drive housing. This is a one-off service item to be performed 600 miles from new, after the drive components have bedded in.

An oil change is also advised on pre-2008 models, although these machine will of course have exceeded the mileage interval. A dealer will be able to provide full details of how this is accomplished, although I understand it involves disconnecting the Paralever and tipping the unit back to drain the oil. Filling is done via the ABS sensor/speed sensor hole and a specific Castrol product is to be used.

We will research this further and include details in our manual when it is updated.

R1200GS / R1200 Motorcycle Final Drive Oil Change

Author: ‘JimVonBaden’ 27/09/2006
View thread for additional comments: 
1200 FD oil change with pics!  (external link)

See also: R1200GS / R1200 24000m Service

AndyWusual warning, refer to the BMW workshop manual.
Torque values
Notes: Change gear oil, warmed to normal operating temperature.
Securing rear-wheel drive:
Grease the splines of the shaft – Optimoly TA High-temperature assembly grease
Grease the mating faces of flexible gaiter:
Staburags NBU 30 PTM High-performance lubricating grease
Rear-wheel drive, oil capacity – 0.22ltr Castrol SAF-XO gear oil

Tools needed:


· 16mm Socket and ratchet
· Torx Sockets: T-50, T-45, T-30, T-25
· 3/8” 3” extension
· ¼” 6” extension, depending on your Torx socket set
· Torque Wrench
· Flat blade screw driver
· Measuring jug (this one’s great as it enabled you to easily see what you’re pouring in from the top down view)


After finding out that the 2007 R1200 series including the R1200GS bikes will require an oil change at 600 miles, I decided to change my 05 “permanent” oil now, at 20K miles, just in case. Here are the steps:

1. Remove the fender (GS models only).

2. Remove the rear wheel.

3. Unbolt the Brake Caliper and hang it with some wire to the frame.

4. Remove the rear speed sensor, both screws and the clip, and hang it with the brake caliper.

5. Remove oil drain plug, and drain off the oil.

6. Release the paralink at the rear and support the final drive with a strap (it’s now flopped down, with the fill plug at the bottom) I didn’t do this; I just held it in place for a couple minutes. The drive shaft comes out easily, but you may need to push it down a bit to get it to release.

7. Clean the drive shaft and FD input shaft, then add Moly 60, or equivalent lube, to the shaft and splines.

8. Install the rubber gaiter, pivot the rear-wheel drive up and introduce the bevel-pinion shaft into the universal shaft. If necessary, turn the FD gently back and forth to facilitate this operation. (This is made way easier if you have the bike in neutral. I took half an hour to figure this out, and it still took a few minutes)

9. Reconnect the paralever link. (Install the bolt and torque it down to 43 nm.

10. Clip the gaiter back in place.

11. Put the drain plug back in, after you clean it and put some oil on the O-ring.

12. Fill the final drive with oil via the speed sensor hole, with .22 liters of oil. (Do it VERY slowly. The oil will not go in fast, and will come back out the hole and run all over the place. DAMHIK)

13. Grease the speed sensor O-ring and put it in the final drive, followed by the greased speed sensor and then install the screw, the clamp screw, and the clip.

14. Install the caliper, remember to reinstall the fender holder on the lower bolt.

15. Install the wheel, torque it to 60nm.

16. Install the rear fender (GS only), and make sure to start all three screws before tightening them down.

Here is the old oil. It was definitely darker than the new, but not bad for 20K miles. There were no shavings in the old oil, and the little amount of fuzz on the speed sensor was negligible.

I am very glad I did it and will be doing my GF’s 12ST next week, along with a couple others at our tech day.

Overall it should take less than an hour, and is not too bad. Just make sure you have all the tools you need, and plenty of paper towels!

Additional notes:

There is a recall to seal the speedo sensor (certainly on the HP). Apparently they are prone to leak.

  • Mike Z says:

    Thanks. I replaced the rear wheel sensor cable on my 2007 R1200GS Adventure and decided to change the final drive oil while I was at it. Your Video had the current gear box matching my bike. I would not have been able to do the work without your video as a guide. The bike has 23,000 miles and if the final drive oil was changed, whoever did the work did not grease the splines on the shaft drive and u- joint. They were dry. Unfortunately changing the wheel speed sensor did not fix my abs fault. (I do have the GS-911WIFI.)

    • Mark Barlow says:

      My 07′ had abs issue when I bought it last year. Nothing to do with the speed sensor, it’s the break fluid and the abs module. If you are mechanically inclined then pull the module and send it to get it rebuilt for $250 with 5 yr warranty, not buy new on from BMW for $1200 with 1 yr warranty . I forgot that name of the company but they’re in Idaho. The glycol break fluid absorbs moisture and curdles causing it to damage the module. You’ll need the GS911 to run through the 3-4 cycles it needs to reset the system.

      • Dave W says:

        Hi Mark, my experience with my 07 ABS unit was that one of the brushes wasn’t contacting with the rotor so just needed cleaning and new brushes installed. There are videos on YouTube showing how to do it. Nice job for a competent amateur mechanic. Still need the GS911 to “cycle” pulse the brake fluid.
        The same ABS module is found in BMW cars and suffers from the same electrical fault. I can’t say I have come across an issue with DOT 4 brake fluid causing corrosion in a sealed system.

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