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  • Coolant boiling

    Hey guys and gals,

    Sorting through the issues with the 98 R1. Have run the bike up to 90 degrees (via the panel mounted temperature gauge) and its boiled the coolant. At first I've noticed the reserve tank level rise and then it spit it out the overflow (as you'd expect) followed by bubbling in the coolant reserve.

    I've checked the radiator (given it a decent flushing) and its all clear. After looking at the service manual I'm starting to wonder if it is the thermostat assembly. For the R1 owners, could this assembly be an issue? Any other ideas would be appreciated. I'm at the stage where I'm either going to have to take out the assembly and check it or pay someone to fix the problem. I'm on a budget with the repair work so I'd rather find and fix it with PSB help. Cheers



    "Always out-numbered, never out-gunned"


  • #2
    Take the thermostat out and dump it into a cup of bioling water and see if it opens.
    The wax capsules do go after an amount of time.
    Also, when you pop the lid to the reserve tank, any smoke/vapour come out?

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    • #3
      Could be a heap of things
      Have you tried running it with the radiator cap off? when its up to operating temp you should see a nice flow of coolant down the hole where the cap was. If you get bubbling you may have head gasket issues.
      Thermostat could be stuck shut, giving no flow so the water in the block/head boils but that usually doesnt then force a lot of water out into catch tank, just boils whats in the engine, makes the temp guage go through the roof then cooks the engine.
      Another simple thing to check is the radiator cap, if thats not holding pressure then as it warms up it will pump out of rad into catch tank. Take cap into radiator repair place, most of them wont charge you to test it. Cheapest and easiest thing to check first.

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      • #4
        No, there didn't seem to be any smoke. Vapor came out and I took it as a sign that it was definitely boiling. Pulling out the thermostat is (I guess) the only real way to check it but to get to it I'm going to have to remove the carbs.



        "Always out-numbered, never out-gunned"

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Sean'o View Post
          Could be a heap of things
          Have you tried running it with the radiator cap off? when its up to operating temp you should see a nice flow of coolant down the hole where the cap was. If you get bubbling you may have head gasket issues.
          Thermostat could be stuck shut, giving no flow so the water in the block/head boils but that usually doesnt then force a lot of water out into catch tank, just boils whats in the engine, makes the temp guage go through the roof then cooks the engine.
          Another simple thing to check is the radiator cap, if thats not holding pressure then as it warms up it will pump out of rad into catch tank. Take cap into radiator repair place, most of them wont charge you to test it. Cheapest and easiest thing to check first.
          Thanks Sean. I've run it with the radiator cap (not at temperature) and didn't see an obvious flow. When I snapped the throttle, the coolant level dropped and then returned to its previous level. No bubbles were seen. Temperature gauge was pretty good and it took about ten minutes to get even close to 90 degrees, but then again, is it measuring at the radiator or at the block? Good idea with the cap. I've got the radiator out to take to a shop (fins need fixing and pressure check), so I'll get them to check it at the same time



          "Always out-numbered, never out-gunned"

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          • #6
            also there is a test called a TK head check which passes some of the vapour from the radiator through a liquid and if it changes colour then you have head/gasket issues. pretty cheap and easy.
            IM ALWAYS ON THE EDGE, ITS ONLY THE SHARPNESS THAT VARYS

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            • #7
              Thanks MattyA, I'll keep it in mind but I would expect it to be running a lot rougher if it had head gasket issues.



              "Always out-numbered, never out-gunned"

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              • #8
                If you have the rad out already, it shouldnt be much to take the thermostat out, i wouldnt even bother testing it, they are pretty cheap, just put a new one, you know its all good then.

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                • #9
                  Unfortunately its under the carby's on this model, so on the other side of the block. Otherwise yeah, I would have done it



                  "Always out-numbered, never out-gunned"

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                  • #10
                    Sean'o hit the nail on the head mate re Rad Cap. By all means get the radiator sorted - if she's boiling @ 90 deg C she's not holding pressure. Should go all the way to 120 deg C when the cooling system is sound / cap ok. Should be "1.0" on the cap yeah? ie 1.0 Bar?(not 100% but check the book specs re correct cap relief pressure)
                    Hope it helps .

                    ps 06 12's ROCK !!
                    When life throws you a few curves
                    GET YOUR KNEE DOWN!!

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                    • #11
                      hehe cheers Matt. I'm dropping it off on monday so I'll post what they find



                      "Always out-numbered, never out-gunned"

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                      • #12
                        Boiling at 90c can't happen normally - water boils at 99.97c at sea level. If pumping out probable means head gasket or crack somewhere in system (that is a crack in the metal not the drug).

                        Let us know if you find the culprit
                        Supported and kept fit by sigpic

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                        • #13
                          Looks to be a damaged radiator cap. I've bought one from the wreckers and am re-installing the radiator tomorrow.



                          "Always out-numbered, never out-gunned"

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