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Discussion Starter #1
So... I just got my KLR a few weeks ago (first bike I've ever owned just got my licenses last week, loving it so far) and I took it on some trails yesterday. I was working the bike pretty hard as the trails were tough and was not going much above idle speed. After a while I noticed the bike was starting to get hot (the temperature gauge was about 3/4 of the way up, significantly above the half way point, is this normal?) . I stopped the bike (fan was running) and after sitting for about a minute it just shut down. I let it cool, started it up and rode off right away making sure I was going fast enough to cool the engine, after that it worked fine. Coolant gauge indicated coolant level is NOT low.
Any ideas what could be wrong? Thanks in advance sorry for the lengthy post

TLDR: Bike was being put to work, got hot, and shut down on it's own.
 

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What year?

It will get a bit hot if running slow on trails. Not sure what the issue is but others will chime in soon. I have had mine peggeg for heat since my fan fuse was blown but it did run OK.

I think the fix would be the thermo bob but can't say for sure. I just put one on but have not tested it yet.
 

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You mean the fan shut off right? If so I'd assume that after a minute of sitting there, not running, with the fan running that the thermostatic switch was satisfied.

Dave
 

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Sounds like completely, totally, authentically, typical normal KLR650 cooling system operation; it's WORKING!

BTW, the temperature gauge doesn't show your coolant level; checked by removing radiator cap and visual inspection of level, and by observing meniscus compared to FULL mark on coolant reservoir.

You're not overheating in my view, unless the coolant is boiling and the temperature gauge needle moves to the extreme red zone; YMMV.

Fear not; enjoy riding your bike!
 

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.................
I think the fix would be the thermo bob but can't say for sure. I just put one on but have not tested it yet.
Thermo-bob does not increase the cooling capacity of the system. It just smooths out temperature fluctuations cause by the thermostat opening and closing. Once the engine is hot/warm enough for the thermostat to stay open, the T-bob makes no difference and the temperature just floats with the load the engine puts on the cooling system.
 

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Sounds like completely, totally, authentically, typical normal KLR650 cooling system operation; it's WORKING!

BTW, the temperature gauge doesn't show your coolant level; checked by removing radiator cap and visual inspection of level, and by observing meniscus compared to FULL mark on coolant reservoir.

You're not overheating in my view, unless the coolant is boiling and the temperature gauge needle moves to the extreme red zone; YMMV.

Fear not; enjoy riding your bike!
Yes, I agree with Damocles about everything except observing the meniscus in the radiator reservoir. While I am sure there is one it appears as a flat line and I just check to make sure the coolant level is visible in the view window of the reservoir.
 

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Agree, the Thermo-Bob does NOT enhance cooling; the developer makes no such claim, although some of his customers do. After the thermostat opens, engine cooling is at the mercy of coolant circulation and radiator/engine air flow, Thermo-Bob or not.

For literary clarity, substitute, "upper level of coolant," for "meniscus," in my post above. Or, perhaps, edit as: "Meniscus, if it had a meniscus." :)
 

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Another vote for the Thermo-Bob. My KLR would run cool on the highways and hot in slow city traffic and on trails. Once I installed the Thermo-Bob 2, my bike runs at 190 in all conditions...except for the case that Damocles warns you about. Check the coolant level before your rides, especially the tougher ones.
 

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So... I just got my KLR a few weeks ago (first bike I've ever owned just got my licenses last week, loving it so far) and I took it on some trails yesterday. I was working the bike pretty hard as the trails were tough and was not going much above idle speed. After a while I noticed the bike was starting to get hot (the temperature gauge was about 3/4 of the way up, significantly above the half way point, is this normal?) . I stopped the bike (fan was running) and after sitting for about a minute it just shut down. I let it cool, started it up and rode off right away making sure I was going fast enough to cool the engine, after that it worked fine. Coolant gauge indicated coolant level is NOT low.
Any ideas what could be wrong? Thanks in advance sorry for the lengthy post

TLDR: Bike was being put to work, got hot, and shut down on it's own.
dennisarthur,
You may learn to 'Ignore' some of Damocles postings, we don't know why he purposely tries to confuse the issue sometimes!

A stone stock KLR650 will run perfectly "Happy" at 9/10ths scale of the temp gauge. If it truly gets 'into' the RED Zone, then it is time to shut it OFF and take a break.
Perfectly normal for the fan to be running continuously at 'trail speeds' and for 1-3 minutes after 'key OFF' if IT is a Gen1.
(I think a Gen2 fan shuts OFF when KEY is Off. I 'hate' that system.)

A 'Thermo-Bob' will RAISE your normal Operating Temperature to the Middle of Temp gauge. Which is actually a good thing. 190-200 degrees F., normally! Keeps your oil cleaner!
 

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dennisarthur,
You may learn to 'Ignore' some of Damocles postings, we don't know why he purposely tries to confuse the issue sometimes!
I'd point out . . . some are easily confused!

:)

-------------------

Brief, irrelevant anecdote; perhaps related obliquely to the topic of, "confusion." On a ride with three companions (one on a NEW Honda Africa Twin, a BMW 650 (800 cc), a KLR650, and my KTM 690, we stopped at a diner for lunch.

I asked the waitress what kinds of burgers they served, specifically, if they had buffalo burgers on the menu.

She replied, "No buffalo burgers, but we have a bison burger."

"Great!" I said, "I'll have a bison burger!"

I did, and . . . it was delicious.

---------------------------------------

In case anyone wants to know what a Honda Africa Twin looks like (this one had 30 miles on the odometer):

 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for the responses!
To clarify...
The Bike shut itself off, not the fan. Also, when i checked the coolant I did check it the correct way (in the front of the bike where it says "Full" and something else, it was between the two)
 

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dennisarthur,
The only thing I can suggest from 'afar' is "lather-rinse-repeat'.

The Gen2, 2008 and up have a 30% larger radiator than a Gen 1!
I'll guess that we all need more information.

Have you Checked your Engine OIL Level? Bike standing 'straight-up'.
 

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Thanks for the responses!
To clarify...
The Bike shut itself off, not the fan. Also, when i checked the coolant I did check it the correct way (in the front of the bike where it says "Full" and something else, it was between the two)
The usual reason for the bike to shut down when hot is if it got hot enough to seize the engine....which it didn't both by the gauge and the fact that it started and ran normally immediately after.....ergo, I'd expect an unrelated electrical glitch. 2008's have known wiring harness rub through issues (do a search for more info). sidestand safety switch is also problematic.



Good luck.

Dave
 

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Thanks for the responses!
To clarify...
The Bike shut itself off, not the fan. Also, when i checked the coolant I did check it the correct way (in the front of the bike where it says "Full" and something else, it was between the two)
In general, not a bad idea to take a peek inside the radiator to check the coolant level there, also, IMHO.

Incidentally, removing the radiator cap is necessary for burping, removing any air pockets in the system (possibly causing excessively hot running temperatures).

To burp: Run engine with radiator cap removed 'til coolant circulates; shut 'er down, top off radiator and fill reservoir to appropriate level. Button it up and ride!
 

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Since we're talking cooling system, I'll post a historical (mythological?) anecdote regarding the Thermo-Bob:

Upon release of the 2008 models, excessive oil consumption appeared endemic. Many, but not all, 2008 (and some 2009) model owners reported high oil use.

Self-anointed experts/authorities/gurus on another forum postulated causes:

1. Absence of a check-valve in the crankcase vent hose ("PCV Valve Mod"), and
2. Absence of a Thermo-Bob, a deficiency said to cause oval/oblong/out-of-round cylinder bores, thus resulting in oil guzzling.

Hard to accept # 1, for me, although credible rationale may exist. # 2 might have been more plausible, had it not been for the thousands and thousands of KLR650s manufactured prior without excessive oil use, with essentially round cylinder bores, and without Thermo-Bobs. Plus, don't know if any proof existed indicating cylinder bore cross-sections universally became oblong without Thermo-Bobs.

What REALLY caused excessive oil consumption? Don't know for sure, but think a faulty piston/ring redesign and manufacture was the culprit; since corrected, if I'm not mistaken.
 

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Since we're talking cooling system, I'll post a historical (mythological?) anecdote regarding the Thermo-Bob:

Upon release of the 2008 models, excessive oil consumption appeared endemic. Many, but not all, 2008 (and some 2009) model owners reported high oil use.

Self-anointed experts/authorities/gurus on another forum postulated causes:

1. Absence of a check-valve in the crankcase vent hose ("PCV Valve Mod"), and
2. Absence of a Thermo-Bob, a deficiency said to cause oval/oblong/out-of-round cylinder bores, thus resulting in oil guzzling.

Hard to accept # 1, for me, although credible rationale may exist. # 2 might have been more plausible, had it not been for the thousands and thousands of KLR650s manufactured prior without excessive oil use, with essentially round cylinder bores, and without Thermo-Bobs. Plus, don't know if any proof existed indicating cylinder bore cross-sections universally became oblong without Thermo-Bobs.

What REALLY caused excessive oil consumption? Don't know for sure, but think a faulty piston/ring redesign and manufacture was the culprit; since corrected, if I'm not mistaken.
I agree with your rationale completely; thermobobs are great (I have them on both my KLR's), and though I'm less convinced on the PCV mod, neither existed on the Gen1 either and oil burning was much less of an issue prior to 2008....ergo; those things (or the absence of them) isn't the primary issue. My 2001 didn't burn an appreciable amount between changes for years all bone stock.

The ring design change in 2008 is a logical culprit and the reports that there was an issue during this time with poor quality control on the boring also makes sense to me though I haven't seen definitive proof of it. This is why the big bore kits seem to be the only reliable fix.

Guys working on dozens of KLR's all the time tell me that 2008 and some 2009's were the worst with the odd 2010 having problems too....seems to be better afterwards but the odd oil burning problem still crops up....whether the latest Gen2's are better or worse than the 2007 and prior bikes is unknown as far as I can tell. Certainly sustained high rpm use on any big single will use SOME oil.

2 cents,

Dave
 

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There is a lot of Hype out there for the African Twin from Honda. As for me, I am very happy with my Swiss Army Motorcycle that can do just about anything...my KLR!
 
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