How to Prime a Shovelhead Oil Pump


Motorcycles installed with shovelhead motors have oil pumps with optimal pressure for operation. You can check the oil pressure by priming the oil pump. Ensure you have filled the engine's oil tank with clean oil before you prime the oil pump. You can prime the pump with the motorcycle still running while removing any trapped air in the system.

Things You'll Need

  • Socket wrench
  • Oil bottle
  • Take off the screen plug for the top end feed with the socket wrench. Remove the wires from the coil and take off the spark plugs from the engine.

  • Start the motorcycle while in neutral. Rev the engine several seconds. Check if oil is at the top of the plug for the top end feed screen.

  • Remove the check valve ball fitting. Fill the opening with oil and replace the fitting.

  • Rev the engine for five seconds until seeing oil in the screen plug. Crank the motorcycle several more seconds to ensure oil is in the lifters. Turn off the engine. Replace the spark plugs and wires on the coil.


  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/ Images
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