12 Best Oil for Harley Davidson Twin Cam – Maximize Your Ride

Harley Davidson has been the leader of the motorcycle industry for ages. It is considered as one of the classiest bike manufacturers in the world. Twin Cam is the engine produced by Harley Davidson. They have been installing the Twin Cam in most of their bike models until 2017. In 2017, Harley Davidson developed a more advanced engine in the likes of the Milwaukee 8.

The Twin Cam proves to be a robust engine. But, its parts will still go through a lot of rigorous movements. Without proper lubrication, the wear and tear on the engine will be much worse. Since every engine is unique, the oil you put into it must be considered carefully. Hence, you must look at Best Oil For Harley Davidson Twin Cam.

Top Oil Choices for Twin Cam Engines

1. Valvoline SAE 20 W 50 Motor Oil

Valvoline SAE 20 W 50 Motor Oil

The Valvoline SAE comes in multiple variants offering exceptional levels of thickness and serving their respective purposes. This specific variant has a viscosity of fifty. It implies that the specification of the oil is for heavy duty. Such a grade of oil is used for motorcycles, cars, trucks and for pulling trailers as well. Moreover, the price of a single quart of oil stands at about twelve dollars. It also comes in a pack of six cans of one quart each. This case of six cans is priced at forty seven dollars. It is cheaper per unit to opt for the six can variant.

The oil offers excellent balance as it is feasible in both freezing and hot temperatures. In warmer locations, the thickness of the oil thermodynamically reduces and provides decent protection. In colder climates, the engine can start quicker than those oils that provide 5 W or 10 W.


  • The Valvoline motor oil provides protection to the pistons against frictional forces and damage due to heat energy.
  • The oil provides a higher protection and lubrication compared to the global industry benchmarks.
  • The lubricant oil reduces the rate at which the residue from the usage of the engine settles onto the parts by a fourth more than other oils of the same grade.
  • The oil works well in both warm and cool environments.
  • The speed at which the engine can start is exceptional.
  • The viscosity of the liquid stands at a measure of fifty.

2. Castrol 159AE1 Power V Twin

Castrol 159AE1 Power V Twin

The Castrol 159AE1 Power V Twin is specifically sold in packs of 6 cans of one quart each. It is priced at fifty dollars and thirty cents for the pack of six cans in a pack. Castrol is the leader in vehicle oils. They provide lubricants to race bikes and cars as well. The nature of Castrol is such that it suits heavy-duty vehicles as well. The viscosity lies at a level of fifty. It is an entirely synthetic based motor oil. Its synthetic nature is what raises its costs too.


  • The oil works on the gear, the clutch of the bike, and the prominent engine and fuel pumps.
  • The oil is commonly used for sports bikes but is designed and suited in V Twin bikes.
  • It works perfectly in high temperatures due to its high thickness.
  • It is preferred for warmer climates as, unlike other versions of oil, it is not easy to experience thinning of this oil.
  • The viscosity barely drops even when engines run for long durations.

3. Mobil 1 96936 20 W 50 Oil

Mobil 1 96936 20 W 50 Oil

Mobil 1 96936 motor oil for V Twin motorcycles is another product designed explicitly for V Twin motorcycles that use the Twin Cam engine. The Mobil 1 engine has the same thickness of fifty and does not become thin at high temperatures.

It is wholly made out of synthetic materials and has been used since the nineteen eighties. It is versatile and can be used in cars as well. One prime feature is that it only comes in a pack of six cans that have one quart each. It is one of the highest-priced lubricant oils on the market. It costs seventy-six dollars. It can be a great pick because of how long it tends to last.


  • The oil has been produced to lubricate gears and clutches along with the engine of the bike.
  • The heat tolerance of the oil is incredible. It will prevent unaccounted friction between metallic parts.
  • It provides excellent protection to the pistons and parts that work for transmission.
  • Smoother clutch controls are offered. It will reduce the sounds produced when gears are shifted.

4. Maxima 30 06901 V Twin Mineral Oil

Maxima 30 06901 V Twin Mineral Oil

Maxima 30 06901 V Twin is a mineral oil that is used for Twin Cam engines. Mineral oils are produced from fossil fuels directly. Therefore, they are a more natural and robust type of motor oil. They also tend to be cheaper than synthetic oils.

The Maxima 30 06901 V Twin is priced at about seventeen dollars for every thirty two ounces of mineral oil. It might be considered perfect by the veterans in the bike industry because of the faith they have in mineral oils compared to synthetic oils.


  • The Maxima 30 06901 V Twin Oil is dedicatedly designed for Twin Cam engines.
  • The oil retains its ability to be a thick fluid in harsh conditions. The composition of the oil makes it ideal for bikes that are used pretty roughly.
  • It guards the pistons of the engine impressively.
  • It is a mineral oil and therefore protects the engine better than synthetic oils.
  • There are multiple options available for the thickness.

5. Castrol 06147 TX 20 W 50 Motor Oil

Castrol 06147 TX 20 W 50 Motor Oil

The Castrol 06147 TX Lubricant Oil offers remarkable preservation of fuel efficiency while protecting the engine. It does not become a dead weight on the engine. Instead, it smoothes the function of the pistons.

At higher temperatures, its viscosity reduces to minimize resistance to the parts. It is available in both five quarts and in a pack of six cans having one quart each. The former is priced at twenty two dollars and the latter at approximately forty seven dollars.


  • The oil cleans up all the residue that is formed in regular use of the engine.
  • The oil does not get combusted along with fuel as much as industry oils.
  • There is a sealed cap in the jug that can be reused when opened.
  • There are additional fluids that are added to the lubricant to ensure that it remains on the pistons and metal components for longer.

Buying Guide

oil for harley davidson buying guide


The price of oil is a crucial aspect. It is always recommended that the owner sticks to a particular grade of oil unless the venture is into a new location. Therefore, the price of the one grade of oil that you choose becomes vital. You will have to purchase more and more number of oil quarts over time.

Therefore, pick the one that you will be able to spend on in a systematic manner. If there are more number of pistons and metal parts, it is evident that the speed at which the lubricant will get exhausted will be high. Keeping it in mind, you may go for a cheaper alternative as well.

Type of Oil

The two most common types of lubricant oil for engines are synthetic and mineral. Mineral oil generally has a lot of impurities. Such impurities might build up in the engine over a long period of time. The sole purpose of lubricant oil is to beat when that residue builds up. The lubrication is much better than synthetic oil as long as the residue does not settle. Mineral oil is also a more traditional lubricant and may not be perfect for present day bikes.

On the other hand, synthetic oil is an expensive alternative. It lacks impurities and does not have to be changed as often. It involves the use of recreated and altered crude oil and other additives. Pure crude oil is only used in the production of mineral oil.

Synthetic oil usually has a specific grade of oil along with some dry solvents, which are mixed together with another grade of oil to adjust the viscosity. Carbon based compounds are also added to different types of brands to enhance the final product that is to be sold. Therefore, the choice of choosing the type of oil depends upon personal preferences. Both oils have their own benefits and drawbacks.

Twin Cam Engine Oil Change


Every engine oil has two vital aspects or standards that define how they will react with different engines. In any oil, the name is accompanied by numbers like “10 W 50” and “20 W 30”. The first number and the letter combine to form a standard for the ability of the engine to start even in freezing conditions. The higher this number is, the higher is the speed at which the engine can start in low temperatures. The second number is the viscosity or thickness of the oil.

The choice of going for a more viscous motorcycle oil depends upon the temperatures. In warm climates, the heat produced by the engine works in combination with the external heat. When this situation occurs, the oil inside the engine expands. Expansion of motor oil causes it to become thinner. Having a thicker motor oil in such conditions is beneficial as it compensates for the thinning.

Depending upon the usage of the engine, you must look for an oil that best suits the parts of the engine. Going for a very thick motor oil is not preferable if you will be using the bike more often in colder locations.

Model Of Engine

Although the Twin Cam engine is a series of engines that has few modifications across bike models, the capacity and number of pistons often differ. The engines cannot be fed with random motor oils. They must be given lubricant oils that suit them. The purpose of the engine parts and the oil is different, but they still work as complements to the cohesive performance of the bike.

Frequently Asked Questions

oil for harley davidson faq

1. How do lubricant oils work for engines?

Motor oils are put into the engine so that the moving metal parts can perform their tasks smoothly. Without proper lubrication, the chance of the metal parts getting damaged sooner is high. Therefore, it improves not only the performance of the engine but also its life.

2. Why are Zinc based synthetic oils preferred some times?

Zinc is a component of some motor oils due to its ability to reduce the excessive friction on the metallic parts of the engine. It not only acts as a good lubricant but also reduces the cumulative heat generated by the engine. Whenever combustion takes place, Oxygen is utilized. The metallic parts of the engine sometimes form a layer of their respective oxides. To counter this problem, Zinc is a valuable ingredient as it oxidizes itself first.

3. If Zinc is good, why was its use stopped in the production of motor oils?

Zinc is beneficial, but as mentioned previously, the Zinc in the oil tends to oxidize. It protects the engine from the build up of residue. However, the zinc oxide that is produced as a by-product can damage the engine in the long run. Besides, the use of Zinc in motor oil has not been halted to the full. It is still used in oils quite effectively, but its quantity and proportion have been reduced so that you can derive the maximum benefits without hampering engine performance.


It is frequently necessary for the bike’s acceleration to be high during red lights. The capacity to stop and start quickly is thought to be essential. The amount of effort that is put in by an engine is what delivers the performance of the vehicle.

Depending upon the type of oil, you can use the best lubricant to maximize engine performance. In general, it can be noticed that the Twin Cam engines are heavy duty and therefore require viscous lubricants. If the quality of the oil is lowered, the engine will tend to suffer more and will require more maintenance.