Coolant Level Suddenly rose?? - 600RR.net
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post #1 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-20-2018, 01:34 AM Thread Starter
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Coolant Level Suddenly rose??

Alright so here's the deal: I monitor my vital fluid levels very closely meaning pretty much before and after every ride. I have been noticing that my coolant level seems to very slowly drop over time, but not to the point where I have bothered to try and track it down. It's so minor I only need to top it off every few months or so (I'm checking the level and topping off from the expansion tank; radiator cap has not been off in months).

But today, I came back from my usual canyon ride and I quickly noticed that my coolant level was way above the full line! Normally after a ride it is just under the Full line. The bike did not overheat, but I did notice it was getting up to 225 at a stand still pretty quickly whereas usually it stabilizes around 221 or so in similar conditions.

I'm suspecting it's just a bad radiator cap that's not holding pressure, but I'm kind of suspect because I put a new cap on it just less than a year ago. Oh and today when I came back from work, the level was exactly where it was when I finished my ride, meaning none of the coolant that got pushed into the reservoir was drawn back into the radiator. Needless to say I am not riding the bike until I get this sorted. And now I'm wondering if I could have already hurt the bike running it without pressure in the system. 225 degrees and zero pressure could equal boiling but I am running Engine Ice.

Thoughts?

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post #2 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-20-2018, 01:46 PM
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Okay so i'm not experienced with this directly however did some research on it..

Most coolant related issues are leaks and coolant draining which we can rule out. Sounds like your right and has to do with pressure, get the feeling it isn't anything major in terms of repair. Came across these pressure test kits from 50-150 or If you have roadside breakdown cover, AA maybe give them a call to test the pressure only ;)

Could the rubber pipping between coolant and radiator be loose somewhere causing loss of pressure? perhaps cracked.. Hopefully nothing to do with the water pump

Last but not least, has the radiator been burped properly
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post #3 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-20-2018, 04:45 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply Honda rep,

I've looked at those pressure test kits as well. I'm hoping I can borrow one from a local parts store; a lot of times they rent stuff like that for no cost.

I haven't found any leaks, and yes the radiator was properly burped months ago. bike has been perfect from then until now.

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post #4 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 01:47 AM
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Instead of talking about it, why not go outside and take the 15 mins to check the cap?
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post #5 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 04:33 PM Thread Starter
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Well in my experience a radiator cap is usually not something that can be diagnosed faulty via a simple visual inspection. I will probably just buy a new cap, because I am 95% sure that is the problem, and wait to disassemble until I have the cap.

I was just wondering if anyone here has experienced these sypmtoms, or had an oem cap go bad in less than a year. Seems strange.

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post #6 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 04:55 PM
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if the gasket on the cap is compromised, it will be visibly so

if the check valve on the cap is blocked open, it will be visibly so

if the spring in the cap is compromised, it will be easy to tell.




it's a very very simple part, and going out and using your brain will get you leaps and bounds further ahead than posting online and waiting days and days for someone to tell you what to do.
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post #7 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 06:09 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the (slightly condescending) help.

I've had caps that leaked slightly under pressure and the gasket looked pristine, so I don't buy that first one.

Thanks for the second and third tips. Now I know what to look for.

And I haven't been waiting days and days for someone to tell me what to do lol. I've been waiting for a day off, which for me is tomorrow and the next day. Thought I might as well get some feedback in the meantime. Sorry.

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post #8 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 06:26 PM
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Maybe the issue with your leaking slightly under pressure wasn't due to the gasket. There's more to it than that


This is likely a simple problem that you have either invented in your head (likely, based on your hypochondriacal checking of everything), or something you've already diagnosed.


If it were a head gasket you'd have more indicators than just what you've described.
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post #9 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 06:42 PM Thread Starter
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Yea I'm pretty sure it's not a headgasket. I will say though, when I drained the oil a few days ago (same day as I noticed the high coolant level) the oil coming out did look a little more "brown" than usual. Or it could have just been my imagination.

Anyway, I tried to get a new cap today before work, but they didn't have any at my local dealer. Now I'm thinking just find a generic cap that has the same pressure rating (1.1 bar). Maybe even stop by the Automotive Honda dealer. They must have one...

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post #10 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 06:45 PM
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Why don't you look at it before buying parts?
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post #11 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 07:06 PM Thread Starter
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Because I like to have the parts ready such that I can dissasemble and immediately reassemble. Besides, I could always return the cap, or just hold onto it for a later time.

I'll be digging into it first thing tomorrow morning. Will report back on what I find. Really hoping it's just the cap.

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post #12 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 07:34 PM
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It takes 15 mins to get to the rad cap and that's if you're dogging it. These bikes come apart super easily. It's literally more work to go buy it than it is to check it
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post #13 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 08:13 PM
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Just to be clear- the fluid level is still within acceptable levels, the bike is not overheating or even getting within 20* of overheating, and everything is working fine, but your worried that everything is not perfectly the same, right?

Your overthinking. You'll know when you have a problem.

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post #14 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-21-2018, 09:24 PM Thread Starter
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Oh I know I have a problem, and I have a pretty good idea of what that problem is.

I'll let you know for sure tomorrow

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post #15 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-22-2018, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
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Radiator is full. Cap looks fine.

Where the hell could this sudden extra volume of coolant have come from!?!?

And no I'm not imagining things. The level has been between Low and Full when cold and about Full when hot for the past 2-3 months. Now it's way above Full at all times. Wtf

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post #16 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-22-2018, 04:33 PM Thread Starter
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Another update.

I pressure tested the radiator and it held 19 psi for over 6 seconds (from the service manual).

Next I pressure tested my cap and strangely it will not release pressure. It'll hold 25 psi and not drop. Haven't tried over 25 out of fear of breaking it or the $250 tester I loaned. I tried another cap I had laying around from NY old Miata, and that cap too did not release pressure. Now I'm doubtful of the test rig...

Thinking about just re burping the system, pulling the excess coolant from the expansion tank, and seeing what happens

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post #17 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-22-2018, 07:24 PM
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after it cooled off was the level back to normal?


i still think you're probably chasing nothing here.
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post #18 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-22-2018, 10:52 PM Thread Starter
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No. The level did not even go down at all.

So, after pressure testing everything today I siphoned out the excess coolant in the expansion tank, started the bike up and burped it the best I could. Got a couple bubbles. Went for a ride, and I noticed bubbles were coming into the expansion tank from the vacuum tube almost non stop. Eventually the bubbles stopped, and the expansion tank at this point was close to empty.

After getting home, I topped off the expansion tank and put her back together. Btw the amount I removed from the expansion tank to get it back to normal levels was the exact amount that had to go back in to bring it to normal levels after my ride. Net zero change.

So somehow a bunch of air got into my system, which took up volume in my radiator/hoses, thus forcing the excess coolant into my expansion tank. Don't know how that happened.

Sadly, after going for another ride later today, the level is again way high, and after cooling off for a bit, none of it has been pulled into the radiator!! Mother.

Somehow air is getting into the system as I ride. Praying it's not coming from the combustion chamber.

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Last edited by Honda-Power; 05-22-2018 at 11:12 PM.
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post #19 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-23-2018, 05:58 PM Thread Starter
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Struggling to think of how so much air is getting into my cooling system other than it being a head gasket issue.

Bike still does not overheat, and it runs great, but every ride more coolant is pushed into expansion tank, and none is drawn back into radiator.

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post #20 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-23-2018, 07:03 PM
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did you inspect the cap like i told you to?
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post #21 of 43 (permalink) Old 05-23-2018, 07:34 PM Thread Starter
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Yes. Neither valve is stuck open or closed.

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post #22 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-05-2018, 04:02 PM Thread Starter
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Still haven't figured out what's going on with my 600. I haven't been riding it much, but I did take it out today. All was fine except the bike did puke some coolant out of the overflow at one point when I was stopped at a red light and the temp climbed to 228 degrees.

I'm still thinking it's the cap or maybe even somehow the radiator. I have a spare radiator lying around, I Amy just throw it in. Any help is appreciated.

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post #23 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-05-2018, 10:05 PM
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This does not sound like a radiator issue. I know you said you inspected the cap, but why not get a new one like were originally thinking and see if it helps. I think you are are on the right track as someone mentioned above and your coolant is expanding due to lack of pressure in the system.

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post #24 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-06-2018, 12:14 PM Thread Starter
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I'll try swapping the known good cap from my car onto the motorycle. I think they are the same specs/size. I'm just super skeptical it's the cap considering it's only about a year old, and it looked fine.

If it's not the cap, the only thing I can think of is head gasket, which doesn't make sense either because the bike never overheated.

Edit: does anyone have any idea how air could be getting into the radiator as the bike runs? All I can think of is a leaking head gasket, allowing combustion gasses in. Might try to grab one of those hydrocarbon testers, and see for sure if that's the case

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Last edited by Honda-Power; 06-06-2018 at 12:28 PM.
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post #25 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-06-2018, 02:30 PM Thread Starter
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Tried the cap from my car jsut now. Same dimensions, same pressure rating, so good to go.

The ride went fine. Bike ran strong as usual, temps were good, and it did not boil over. However, after my ride, with the engine still running, I noticed bubbles were coming into the overflow tank from the radiator. The overflow tank was not boiling, but air bubbles were entering from the radiator. Below is a video I took. Keep in mind this was after a 30 + minute ride, temp at 225 degrees.


Could my water pump be cavitating, causing the bubbles? Anyone seen this with a 600RR?

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post #26 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-06-2018, 06:04 PM Thread Starter
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Another video for you guys:


At this point I am almost certain it is a bad head gasket , leaking combustion gasses into the cooling system. Has anybody seen bubbles like this come from anything other than a bad head gasket? Thanks as always.

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post #27 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-06-2018, 07:45 PM
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Test #3 in this video looks like your video image. Sign of a blown head gasket. You might want to try at least one more of his tests to confirm. Test #4 looks like an easy one.

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post #28 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-12-2018, 05:13 PM Thread Starter
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Another update:

I rented out a block tester from AutoZone. Ran the test as instructed, and the fluid did not change colors! Like always I am skeptical of the test results, because now I have no idea where the bubbles in the previous video I posted are coming from. Unless the bubbles are just the coolant boiling?

I can't believe I am this stumped.

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post #29 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-12-2018, 09:41 PM
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I think you might have answered your question in the first post with your process of adding coolant and then one day finding out its overfilled. I am not sure if the overflow tank is the most reliable gauge of what is going on in the system with these bikes.

There is a good video or description (cant recall) on how to properly change the fluids on these bikes and that means getting them to temperature filling it up cycling the air out and repeating the process a few times after cooldown. I had the foamy bubbles when changing my coolant. Its just part of the process but you are not really filling/circulating until the bike is at temp (thermostat opens up).

This is not the proper fill link but gives some information.

https://www.600rr.net/vb/62-troublesh...tem-temps.html
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post #30 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 01:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Honda-Power View Post
Another update:

I rented out a block tester from AutoZone. Ran the test as instructed, and the fluid did not change colors! Like always I am skeptical of the test results, because now I have no idea where the bubbles in the previous video I posted are coming from. Unless the bubbles are just the coolant boiling?

I can't believe I am this stumped.
Why is your coolant clear? In the thumbnail of your video, it looks like water. What coolant are you using?

Also the hose from the radiator to reservoir is split at the end (unless someone cut it to make it easier to go on). May as well replace those old hoses while your in there.

Last edited by Axel Nut; 06-13-2018 at 01:18 AM.
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