Recall: 2013 CB500 & CBR500 Motorcycles

March 7, 2014
Byron Wilson
Byron Wilson
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Byron's sure to be hunched over a laptop after the checkers are flown, caught in his own little version of heaven. Whether on dirt, street or a combination of both, MotoUSA's newest addition knows the only thing better than actually riding is telling the story of how things went down.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a recall notice regarding certain 2013 model-year Honda CB500F, CB500X and CBR500R motorcycles due to a possible defect with the rocker arm shaft retaining bolts. There are potentially 6954 units affected.

According to the Defect Notice submitted to the NHTSA on February 13, 2014, “During manufacture of the rocker arm shaft retaining bolts, certain lots failed to receive the proper anti-corrosion treatment and instead received an unapproved coating that affects bolt retention after engine assembly. This may result in the bolt loosening during operation. A loose bolt will initially result in a slow leak of engine oil, but if not addressed the bolt can come out of the cylinder head entirely. A retention bolt that has fallen out may allow the rocker arm shaft to migrate out of its bore and no longer support the rocker arm, resulting in a reduction in engine power and the potential for an engine stall, increasing the risk of a crash.”

The chronology of events leading to the recall starts July 6, 2013 when American Honda issued a quality information report following three warranty claims that cited leaking oil from a loose or missing retaining bolt. Honda investigated further, finding that the proper spec bolts were used and that they had been torqued to the proper specification. Further study revealed instances of improper rocker arm shaft retaining bolt coating on some models. As of February 12, 2014 there were 17 warranty claims related to the issue and zero reports of injury.

Honda will contact owners of affected models and ask that they bring the motorcycle to a Honda dealer for inspection. Dealers will replace rocker arm shaft retaining bolts free of charge. Dealers have also been informed not to sell models within the designated VIN range until the issue has been fixed according to the service bulletin repair procedure.

Owners may contact Honda Customer Service at 1-866-784-1870. The manufacturer’s campaign id number listed in the Defect Notice is JD7. More information is available at the NHTSA website,, or by calling the NHSTA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236. The NHTSA campaign id for this recall is 14V056000.