Kawasaki Ninja 650 (2012-2016) Maintenance Schedule and Service Intervals

This is the maintenance schedule with associated service intervals for the Kawasaki Ninja 650 made between 2012-2016.

The Kawasaki Ninja 650/ER-6F is a parallel twin motorcycle with a fairing. It’s the sportier stablemate of the naked ER-6N, and later the Z650, which is otherwise identical. They even both have handlebars, which is quite unusual for a motorcycle with a fairing.

The Kawasaki has gone through a few major updates since launch in 2006.

  • 2006-2008 Kawasaki Ninja 650R, a.k.a. ER-6F/EX-6: The first base model. Made 53 kW (71 hp) @ 8,500 rpm, and weighed 208 kg (461 lb) wet. Twin gauges.
  • 2009-2011 Kawasaki Ninja 650R a.k.a. ER-6F: First US imported model. Revised first edition with more midrange and better engine cooling. Reduced vibration from rubber engine and handlebar mounts. Wider seat, taller fairing. Big LCD (no tachometer dial) with red backlighting.
  • 2012-2016 Kawasaki Ninja 650: All new bodywork, wider handlebars, new analogue tachometer + digital LCD with more information.
  • 2017+ Kawasaki Ninja 650: New lightweight trellis frame and lighter engine — bike is 19 kg (42 lb) lighter. No side-mounted shock. New slipper clutch. More aggressive bodywork. Slightly lower top-end power due to emissions restrictions.

During the years, almost nothing has changed with the engine — though a few parts have (e.g. the air filter). Those are noted below.

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What you need to service the Kawasaki Ninja 650 (2012-2016)

If you’re servicing the Kawasaki Ninja 650, firstly, you might need these common motorcycle maintenance tools (thinks like an oil filter wrench, catch pan, etc.).

But aside from that, you’ll need these specific items to maintain the Kawasaki Ninja 650 (2012-2016 spec).

PartKawasaki Ninja 650 Spec
OilYou need 1.8L (1.7 US qt) of SAE 10W-40 engine oil “with API SG, SH, SJ, SL or SM with JASO MA, MA1 or MA2 rating”, preferably Kawasaki 10W-40 Engine Oil, or another high-quality oil like Motul 7100.

Kawasaki oil grade recommendation
Don’t over-torque the drain bolt (spec is 30 Nm/22 lb-ft per the manual) — use a torque wrench if you don’t have experience with how much torque is enough.
Oil filterOil filter is part 16097-0008, or you can use Hiflofiltro HF303RC. Torque for oil filter is 17.5 Nm (12.9 ft-lb) (use a torque wrench)
Front brake padsYou can get original OEM parts from a dealership, or double-sintered EBC brake pads for better bite and wear. Part numbers are: Left hand calliper: FA229HH, Right hand calliper: FA231HH
Rear brake padsAs with the front brake pads,yYou can get original OEM parts from a dealership, or double-sintered EBC brake pads for better bite and wear. EBC part number is FA192HH.
Spark plugsNGK CR9EIA-9, with a spark plug gap of 0.8-9.0mm (use a spark plug gapping tool), torqued to 13 Nm or 9 ft-lb (use a torque wrench)
Air filterKawasaki changed the air cleaner during the evolutions of the Ninja 650R/Ninja 650. Part numbers is 11013-0713. DNA also makes performance air filters for later models, and their part number is P-K6N12-01.
Cable lubricantRemember to lubricate your clutch cable (and brake cables if you have them) with a cable lubricant. Protect All Cable Life is a good general-purpose lubricant.
Chain lubricantThe chain needs to be lubricated every 600 km/400 miles (or more, if it gets wet/dirty). Motul chain paste is cheap and well-loved.
Brake fluidSpec is to use DOT-4 brake fluid like Castrol DOT 4.
CoolantUse nitrate-free, phosphate-free, ethylene glycol-based coolant with anti-corrosion inhibitors, e.g. Zerex Asian Vehicle blue coolant.
GreaseUse a lithium soap based grease for all the important greasing points.
Consumables for servicing the Kawasaki Ninja 650 motorcycle (2012-2016)

Maintenance Schedule for Kawasaki Ninja 650.

Below is the maintenance schedule for the Kawasaki Ninja 650 from 2012-2016.

The maintenance for the Kawasaki Ninja 650 is broken into two sections — replacement parts, and engine and chassis maintenance.

Legend for reading maintenance schedule

  • #: Service more frequently when operating in severe conditions: dusty, wet, muddy,
    high speed, or frequent starting/stopping.
  • When there is a time and distance interval, replace it at the earlier of the two.

Parts to replace on the Ninja 650

km x 1000112243648
mi x 1000Every0.67.51522.530
Air cleaner element # – replace18000 km (11250 mile)
Engine oil # – change (Kawasaki 10W-40 Engine Oil)year, more often if riding aggressively
Oil filter – replace (HF303RC)year
Fuel hoses -replace5 years
Coolant – change (Zerex Asian Vehicle Coolant)3 years
Radiator hoses and O-rings – replace3 years
Brake hoses and pipe – replace4 years
Brake fluid (front and rear) – change (Castrol DOT 4)2 years
Rubber parts of master cylinder and caliper – replace4 years
Spark plug – replace (CR9EIA-9)
Parts to replace on the Kawasaki Ninja 650

Periodic Maintenance — Engine & Chassis

km x 1000161218243036
mi x 1000Every0.63.757.511.251518.7522.5
Valve clearance – inspect
Throttle control system (play, smooth return, no drag) – inspectyear
Engine vacuum
synchronization – inspect
Idle speed – inspect
Fuel leak (fuel hose and pipe) – inspectyear
Fuel hoses damage – inspectyear
Fuel hoses installation condition – inspectyear
Coolant level – inspect
Coolant leak – inspectyear
Radiator hose damage – inspectyear
Radiator hoses installation
condition – inspect
Evaporative emission control system – function (if fitted)
Air suction system damage – inspect
Clutch operation (play, engagement, disengagement) – inspect
Drive chain wear – inspect #
Drive chain guide wear – inspect
Tire air pressure – inspectyear
Wheels/tires damage – inspect
Tire tread wear, abnormal wear – inspect
Wheel bearings damage – inspectyear
Brake fluid leak – inspectyear
Brake hoses damage – inspectyear
Brake pad wear – inspect #
Brake hose installation condition – inspectyear
Brake fluid level – inspect6 months
Brake operation
(effectiveness, play, drag) – inspect
Brake light switch operation – inspect
Front forks/rear shock absorber operation (damping and smooth stroke) – inspect
Front forks/rear shock absorber oil leak – inspectyear
Steering play – inspectyear
Steering stem bearings – lubricate2 years
Lights and switches operation – inspectyear
Headlight aiming – inspectyear
Side stand switch operation – inspectyear
Engine stop switch operation – inspectyear
Chassis parts – lubricateyear
Bolts and nuts tightness – inspect
Periodic Maintenance – Engine & Chassis of Ninja 650

Maintaining Your Chain on the Kawasaki Ninja 650

It’s important to maintain your chain on the Ninja 650, as on any chain-driven motorcycle. Use a good-quality chain lubricant like Motul chain paste, or a Motul chain care kit which comes with a couple of handy tools to maintain the chain.

Kawasaki recommends you follow the following chain maintenance schedule:

Chain maintenance itemEvery
Check drive chain lubrication condition, lubricating if necessary (Motul chain paste)400 mi / 600 km
Check drive chain slack, adjusting if necessary600 mi / 1000 km
Chain maintenance — Kawasaki Ninja 650


  • Do these items (checking/adjusting slack, and checking/applying lubrication) more often if you ride your Ninja 650 in dusty or rainy conditions.
  • Always lubricate the chain after washing the motorcycle.

Tyre size and tyre pressure for the Kawasaki Ninja 650

The Kawasaki Ninja 650 has the following tyres and tyre sizes standard:

TyreSizeTyre pressure (cold)
Front120/70 ZR17 M/C (58W)225 kPa/32psi
Rear160/60 ZR17 M/C (69W)250 kPa/36psi
Kawasaki Ninja 650 Tyre sizes, brands, pressures

People usually fit street or sport touring tyres on the Ninja 650.

About the Kawasaki Ninja 650 (2012)

Black 2013 2014 Kawasaki Ninja 650 yellow shock
Black 2014 Kawasaki Ninja 650 with a yellow shock

The third generation of Ninja 650 was released in 2012 and kept constant until 2016, other than colour changes.

Like the earlier 2nd generation (2009-2011) Kawasaki Ninja 650, the 2012-2016 Ninja 650 is a general purpose sport motorcycle based on a 649cc parallel twin motor with a 180-degree crank.

The engine is liquid-cooled, 8-valve (4 valves per cylinder) 649 cc parallel twin with dual overhead cams. It’s tuned for around 50 kW or 70 hp of peak power around 7500 rpm, optimising for mid-range power and torque, making it suitable for everyday use without getting “bored”.

The 3rd gen Ninja 650 keeps the spirit of the general purpose middleweight Ninja — an extremely reliable (dare I say “bulletproof”) engine and simple handling. It’s generally a very easy motorcycle to get along with.

The Kawasaki Ninja 650 is designed for commuting, but it has enough power to send it north of 100 mph when need be. The chassis is stable and compliant, and the braking is on the side of sporting with twin 300mm discs — though only two-piston calipers.

Like other Ninja motorcycles, the Kawasaki Ninja 650 also looks great. In fact, at first blush, it looks like a high-end sportbike, until you notice it has a thinner profile rear tyre and only two exhaust header pipes rather than four.

While the riding position is very comfortable, it doesn’t have sky-high tell-tale handlebars like an adventure bike does. It looks sporty!

In 2012, Kawasaki redesigned the Ninja 650 and gave it sleeker, more aggressively styled bodywork than before. They also added

  • An adjustable 3-position windscreen
  • A 20mm handlebar
  • A two-piece seat that’s topped with thicker form
  • An analogue tachometer above an LCD information display, replacing the orange backlight all-LCD of the previous version

Service intervals for the Ninja 650 are the same, with Kawasaki recommending oil changes every 7500 miles (12000 km), with valve inspections every 15000 miles (24000 km).

Kawasaki updated the the 2017 Kawasaki Ninja 650 visually and re-tuned the engine for more up-to-date emissions compliance.

Manual for the Kawasaki Ninja 650 (2012-2016)

2015-2016 Kawasaki Ninja 650 and Ninja 650 ABS Maintenance Schedule Screenshot From Manual
Maintenance schedule for 2016 Ninja 650 ABS.

The above maintenance schedule comes directly from the user’s manual for the 2015-2016 Kawasaki Ninja 650 and Ninja 650 ABS, which is available here.

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