The Seasoned Wrench

Ducati Maintenance Cost: How Expensive Are They Really?

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Ducati Maintenance Cost Overview

Ducati recommends a range of maintenance items for its motorcycles, including oil changes, desmodromic valve clearance checks, timing belt replacements and multi-point inspections[1]. The Transparent Maintenance plan allows riders to know in detail and in advance all scheduled maintenance interventions their motorbike will have to pass at each time or km interval[2].

Air Cooled Ducati Maintenance Schedule (and some others)

For air cooled Ducatis the simplified maintenance schedule applies. This includes oil changes every 6,000 miles/10,000 km or 6 months[3][4], checking timing belts every two years[3][4] and regular checks every 600 miles/6,000 km or 6 months[3][4] along with valve clearance checks every 7,500 miles/12,000 km.

Modern Ducati Maintenance Schedule

Ducati’s longest service interval is 30,000 km (18,000 miles)[1][2]. This applies to some models where the main Desmo Service is not necessary until this mileage[1][2]. Other models require a service at 24,000 km (15,000 miles)[1][2], which includes changing fluids, plugs, filters and torquing bolts[3].

Common Ducati Problems

Electrical

-Low voltage and high voltage often signify that the regulator rectifier needs urgent fixing[1].

– Abnormal battery draining or self-discharging is a common problem on Ducati motorcycles that have been sitting inactive for a long period of time[1].

– Ignition failures, an averagely low headlight, poor acceleration and low mileage are common problems with the Ducati 848[2].

– Electrical issues such as dashboard not working or voltage regulator failing are recurring complaints from Ducati owners[3].

– Low battery voltage is one of the most common causes of hard starting in the Ducati 1098[4], while ECU faults can be caused by a problem with the bike’s throttle body[4].

Mechanical Failures and Otherwise

An issue that applies to many Ducati models is failure of the clutch slave cylinder. Signs to watch out for:
-The banjo bolt at the master cylinder can become loose, causing fluid to drip from the joint[1]. To fix this, turn the bars all the way to the left and slowly squeeze and release on the lever while snugging the banjo[1].

– Air or fluid can be released from the slave cylinder by squeezing the clutch lever multiple times and then holding it in while releasing the bleed nipple[2]. An 8mm ring spanner is best for this job[2].

– The piston rubber o-ring/seal of a mastercylinder can split, requiring replacement[3].

– The master cylinder is generally similar across Ducatis from the 90’s, while slave cylinders are usually similar for dry clutch models[4].

– Freeplay in a clutch lever can be caused by an upgrade to an Evoluzione double sealed piston.[5]

Photo by karthegan Padmanaban on Unsplash

Summary

It would not be accurate to say that Ducati motorcycles are not expensive to maintain.

While it is true that some Ducati models may have certain issues that require repair or maintenance, it is not fair to make a general statement about the maintenance costs of all Ducati motorcycles. They can be wonderfully true machines when maintained appropriately and routinely, but hell hath no fury like a woman scorned! Treat her well, and she will do the same for you.

In general, motorcycle maintenance costs can vary widely based on a number of factors, including the type of motorcycle, its age, how it is used, and the availability of parts and service in a given location. Some Ducati models may be more expensive to maintain than others, and some may be less expensive. It is important to consider the specific model and its maintenance requirements when determining the potential costs of owning and maintaining a Ducati motorcycle.

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