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Hi guys, I need some help. I purchased a used 88 KLA Model. It wasn’t running when I bought it due to a fuel line hooked up incorrectly. I got it running and driving. The issue is now it hits the red only after about 5 mins of driving. I don’t let it overheat, I pull over when it hits red.

I checking initially and found that there was NO coolant in the system at all, I filled it up, tried to run it and was still overheating. I drained it out and found rust and chunks of corrosion and stuff. I flushed the system with a vinegar wash, got the radiator flowing again. I also disassembled the water pump, everything looked peachy there. Pulled the thermostat and tested it, it works just fine.

I put everything together and tried it with water wetter and still overheats. The fan kicks on correctly and I even jumped the wires so it is on 100% of the time, no help.

It has fresh Mobil-1 15w-50 oil in it, I also checked to see if there’s any leaks in or around the carb, I didn’t find any and a lean running carb shouldn’t cause it to go to red from what I understand.

The previous owner mentioned something about jetting the carb but again, it runs just fine with no throttle hesitation, backfiring, popping or anything.

I did read somewhere online that if an oil passage is blocked/clogged it could cause the engine to heat up more, has anyone had issues with that?

Any help or advice would be 100% appreciated as all I want to do is ride lol

Thank you for reading!
 

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A suggestion: BURP your radiator. Run with radiator cap off 'til coolant circulates; watch for pockets of air to be expelled through open radiator fill nozzle. After a few minutes of this, turn off engine, top off radiator with coolant, restore radiator cap and see if operating temperature is reduced.

Air pockets in the cooling system can cause the symptom you describe. The recommended procedure may not help, but won't hurt anything if you monitor the temperature gauge as you're doing.
 

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Hi guys, I need some help. I purchased a used 88 KLA Model. It wasn’t running when I bought it due to a fuel line hooked up incorrectly. I got it running and driving. The issue is now it hits the red only after about 5 mins of driving. I don’t let it overheat, I pull over when it hits red.

I checking initially and found that there was NO coolant in the system at all, I filled it up, tried to run it and was still overheating. I drained it out and found rust and chunks of corrosion and stuff. I flushed the system with a vinegar wash, got the radiator flowing again. I also disassembled the water pump, everything looked peachy there. Pulled the thermostat and tested it, it works just fine.

Any help or advice would be 100% appreciated as all I want to do is ride lol

Thank you for reading!
Did you actually remove the water pump impeller nut, unscrew the impeller & check for the spacer shim behind it? Or actually check the torque on the nut? BECAREFUL, It only needs 65 INCH Pounds.

I'll guess that possibly someone has reversed the coolant hoses at the water pump. The forward nipple from the pump GOES TO the Cylinder. The lower radiator hose goes to the rearward nipple.
 
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Discussion Starter #4
Did you actually remove the water pump impeller nut, unscrew the impeller & check for the spacer shim behind it? Or actually check the torque on the nut? BECAREFUL, It only needs 65 INCH Pounds.

I'll guess that possibly someone has reversed the coolant hoses at the water pump. The forward nipple from the pump GOES TO the Cylinder. The lower radiator hose goes to the rearward nipple.
I just got done tearing it down to check the oil screen. While I pulled some GUNK out of that screen it was nothing to impede the flow of oil. While putting it back together, I was putting the impeller back on, I assume the shim is the part with a spring behind it? This was not seated correctly and upon seating it correctly went in and had much more pressure and this point positively did not turn without turning the engine.

Does that sound like something that could cause this? Lol I am just about to bang my head against the wall at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Shim # 92025 -1507, it sets the clearance between the impeller vanes and the pump cover. If too much clearance, the pump will have Reduced Flow.

See diagram here, 1988 Kawasaki KLR650 (KL650-A2) Water Pump | Babbitts Kawasaki Partshouse

Were the coolant hoses on the correct positions?
Hoses were correctly ordered, I checked them a couple of times. There was a decent amount of build up in the pump itself so I THINK the shim was in there. Does it look like a washer?
 

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.8 mm thick (maybe dark colored) and smaller OD than the common flat washer under the nut.
 

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Also, examining possibilities, . . .unlikely, but . . . temperature sensor could be mis-calibrated. I think a calibration procedure exists in service manuals.
 

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does it actually overheat or does the gauge just max out, an infrared temp gun would verify. Like Damocles eluded to, it could be a fault with the gauge sender or wiring.
 

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skizotty,
Being that you had the fuel tank off to do carburetor work, it is possible that a mis-routed Yellow temp gauge wire could have got caught between the RH fuel tank puck & the steel bracket of the tank.
This could cause the temp gauge to Max Out, even without running the engine. But engine & road vibration could also come into play with this type of rubber & paint & wire insulation chaffing between copper wire and steel frame.
 
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