LT80 Engine Oil - where is it?

Question:

  • I can't seem to find out how to check the oil in my engine and transmission. Also, what kind or weight oil is it? Where is my oil filter?  {Bill, OH Suzuki LT80)
  • Answer:

    The LT80 quad has a 2 stroke or 2 cycle engine.  You are thinking of a 4 stroke engine, like a car.  Because it is a 2 stroke machine, the LT80 engine oil is either pre-mixed with or injected into, the fuel.  It does not use regular motor oil.  Standard and synthetic motor oils used in an automobile (or any 4 stroke) engine smokes but DOES NOT BURN and should not be used in a 2 stroke engine.

    You need to purchase 2 stroke oil, sometimes also labeled injector oil.  Two stroke oil is combustible.  Inside the LT80 engine oil actually burns with the gasoline.  You can get it at online, any bike shop, most auto parts stores or a store that sells other machines with 2 stroke engines (chain saws, lawn mowers, etc) like Agway or Tractor Supply.  

    For the last 12 years or so, we have been using Bel-Ray Motorcycle Oils.

    They are specifically designed to perform in the high temperature, high RPM engines of motorcycles, dirt bikes and ATVs.
    BEL-RAY MC-1 2-Stroke Oil  12.8  OZ.BEL-RAY MC-1 2-Stroke Oil 12.8 OZ.

    Originally the LT80 would have had a small oil tank on the side of the engine with a hose leading to a small oil injector pump.  We have found that in the older machines, if the pump fails, many owners do not replace it.  They simply remove it, plug the orifice and pre-mix their fuel and oil and add it directly to the gas tank.

    I can not be sure if your bike still has the oil tank & injector and whether or not it is operational.  I have to assume that your bike is running now, because you want to check the oil and filter.

    Why do the LT80 engine oil injector pumps fail?  Most riders are not accustomed to adding oil every time they add fuel to their machines. They fill their tank and forget to add the oil.  The oil pump continues to pump even after the oil tank has run dry and the injector pump burns up.

    Scenario 1:

    LT80 Engine Oil Injector Pump

    You see a small tank with a screw on cap on the side of the engine. Open the cap and check to see that there is oil in it. If there is and the bike runs and drives now, it is pretty safe to assume that your injector pump is working.
    Add 2 stroke oil to the fill line (or until it is three quarters full) whenever you add new gasoline.  The oil pump takes care of the rest.

    Scenario 2:

    Pre-Mixing the Oil

    Your LT80 engine oil tank and injector are missing or otherwise obviously not working.  Now you will need to pre-mix your oil and gas.

    Once again, please use 2 stroke or injector oil.  In a pre-mix situation, you must mix the oil with the gasoline before you pour it into the gas tank.  Each bike has it's own pre-mix ratio. You are not seasoning a salad, you can not just add whatever looks good.  Your owner or service manual will give you the proper ratio for mixing.  If you don't have the book, call a local dealer with your year, make and model and they can look it up for you.

    If it happens that you are out camping or on a trail with no phone reception or do not know the exact year or model of the bike, you can always use this rule of thumb. Premix your fuel and oil at a ratio of 32:1.  That means 32 parts gas to 1 part oil.  A part can be any measure, an ounce, a cap or a gallon.

    A gallon is 128 ounces. That means you mix one gallon of gasoline with four ounces of oil. If you mix a half gallon, use 2 ounces of oil.  One quart of gas would be mixed with one ounce of oil.



    To answer the other parts of your question, the Suzuki LT80 engine does not have either transmission oil or an oil filter.  The LT80 does not have a regular clutch with traditional gear box or case filled with trans gears and oil.  As with many smaller quads, it has a belt driven transmission and a final drive.

    Different manufacturers have different names for this, some call it a centrifugal, continuously variable or a variable speed clutch.  It enables smaller kids to ride without the need for shifting gears and the engine will not stall in response to improper clutch use.  The final drive does have oil about 2.7 ounces of 20W40 or 10W40 oil in it.  The oil weight and amount will depend on the year of your quad.  

    Also, most 2 stroke ATVs do not have a traditional, replaceable oil filter.  Some do have a small screen that will catch any debris that may get into the oil before it goes through the pump.  I have checked the fiche for the LT80 and I do not see a screen.  For more definitive info on these last two points, check with a local Suzuki dealer, they are the best source for that information.  

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