White substance in oil

2010 Tiger 1050 ABS.

Hiya, just checked my oil, and while levels are all ok I noticed some white substance on the dip stick.

Not much, but a small blob.

Wiped, checked and rechecked.

Each time there was some white or milkyness On the dip stick. Not all of it, but a small bit here and there.

Bike generally seems to be running ok.

It’s been very cold out, and bike gets hot everyday from it’s commute.

I am guessing this is somehow, somewhere, water in the oil.

Consendation? As the hot bike cools down in a cold garage?
Bike did have a good clean last week so water found its way in?
Or possible head gasket, inlet manifold etc?

What, for a learner mechanic, are the diagnostic steps to check what or where this water is coming from?

What changes might I feel from the ride if there’s a gasket issue?

All help and advice gratefully received.

Can’t help really, but that would suggest water (or coolant) in oil, which might be caused by a leaky head gasket…

How long is the commute ? slow stop start traffic or some Highway miles

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It’s probably condensation around the filler neck due to the cold weather but I’m not familiar with these new fangled rides to know the layout.
Keep an eye on the coolant level just in case it’s contaminating the oil through a blown gasket.
You can check for water by undoing the oil drain plug and holding it while you allow just a dribble to come out. Oil floats on water, if there’s enough then you’ll see water before the oil appears out of the drain plug.
You can also check water content in the oil by heating a pan on the cooker and pouring about a half a teaspoon of oil into the hot pan. Compare some known clean oil with a sample from the engine. Oil contaminated with water will boil and splatter all over the place.
I expect it’s just the cold weather but keep a wary eye on it.


as said above, it’s probably condensation. If it’s a headgasket the coolant level will drop.

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Fantastic, thanks chaps - an excellent response from you all.

It’s a stop start urban commute. About 40mins.

Will keep an eye on the coolant.

Will try those contaminated oil tricks.



As above it’s most likely just condensation, especially as it’s running ok. Check the coolant level, if that’s unchanged and there’s no oil contamination inside the header tank that’s another good sign. When you next go on a long run which isn’t just stop start if it is just condensation it should disappear.


Could have come in through the breather vent if it’s been run in very wet conditions, failing that………… the dreaded! But for now just monitor it.


Continued thanks :+1: