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Thread: coolant blowout

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    Default coolant blowout

    Hello Everyone. I am new to this site. I purchased a 83 royale a couple of years ago and aside from having to put a new stater in it I haven't had any problems until now. I was sitting at a stop light the other day and all the coolant blew out of the right side onto my leg. It couldn't have been all that hot it didn't do any permanent damage to my leg. Just burned a bit the rest of the day and left a red mark. I am just wondering if this has ever happened to anyone else and if so, what caused it. Where should I start looking to make the repair? I would appreciate any advice anyone can give me

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    Now that it has cooled, I would rinse off with water, let dry, fire it up, and detect where the leak is coming from. If all coolant gone, I would add distilled water or coolant first.

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    In order to answer your question, I have some in return:
    How long was the bike running before this happened?
    Did you ride it easy or hard?
    What was the outside temp approx?
    Wear did the coolant come from, appprox area if you know?
    Did you notice where the temp was on the gauge?
    Could be that the thermostat got stuck, heated up the coolant in the engine to the boiling point, created steam which then was forced into the rad and blew out the cap or overflow. Solution? replace the thermostat.
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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    Quote Originally Posted by Marcarl View Post
    In order to answer your question, I have some in return:
    How long was the bike running before this happened?
    Did you ride it easy or hard?
    What was the outside temp approx?
    Wear did the coolant come from, appprox area if you know?
    Did you notice where the temp was on the gauge?
    Could be that the thermostat got stuck, heated up the coolant in the engine to the boiling point, created steam which then was forced into the rad and blew out the cap or overflow. Solution? replace the thermostat.
    First I want to say thanks for the reply. In answer to your questions. I had just ridden it to the store about 3 miles away. The outside temp was really cold. I had to be all bundled up. It came from somewhere on the right side. It shot through that gap in the right side panel onto my right thigh. The temp guage approx. 5 mins before it happened was a little below normal running temp. I always keep an eye on it when riding cause since I got it, it has always had a tendency to run a little hot. Normal for it is about halfway between the halfway point and the red and in the summer at a stoplight sometimes it gets almost all the way up to the red and it has always leaked a little bit of coolant where from I don't know. I just have to add about a cup every month. Once again thanks for the reply Marcarl and hopefully this added info tells you something

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    It sounds like your temperature is pretty much normal. The fan doesn't kick on until the temp is at the red.

    It sounds like the coolant may have come from the overflow, although I think the hose should go low enough it doesn't get on you. Any chance it was over filled? What's the level in the recovery bottle cold?
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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    Pull the plastics and have a look see . An 83 like mine as well, the question really is: What hose or seal didn't blow . Mine is very temperamental in the cold, the couple times I've had it out below 45, the thermostat housing oring leaked.

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    All good advice IMHO.. Personally, if it were my 83 I would check the water pump impellar.. 4 of the 6 84/83's that I have retired still had the OEM plastic impellars in them and 3 of those impellars were scalped clean of the plastic edges that push the water. It is pretty hard for them to cool properly if the water pump is not flowing anti freeze. If it were mine and unless it showed that someone had changed the impellar, I would rebuild the pump completely so I didnt end up with an iffy shaft/seals when replacing the impellar.. Make sense?
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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    Quote Originally Posted by cowpuc View Post
    All good advice IMHO.. Personally, if it were my 83 I would check the water pump impellar.. 4 of the 6 84/83's that I have retired still had the OEM plastic impellars in them and 3 of those impellars were scalped clean of the plastic edges that push the water. It is pretty hard for them to cool properly if the water pump is not flowing anti freeze. If it were mine and unless it showed that someone had changed the impellar, I would rebuild the pump completely so I didnt end up with an iffy shaft/seals when replacing the impellar.. Make sense?
    yah all good advice. I should look at the water pump, but would that cause it to explode out of there. I mean it literally xploded all the coolant onto my leg. In looking at the manual it showed a little rubber plug on the side of the head, would water shoot out of there if the plug popped out? Now the overflow bottle up in the fairing, does that have a hose coming out of the bottom other than the one to the radiator? If so, would it all blow out of there all at once? Sorry if I'm asking stupid questions, this is my first water cooled bike. I have changed water pumps and thermostats on my cars before but that's about it

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    Quote Originally Posted by SpencerPJ View Post
    Pull the plastics and have a look see . An 83 like mine as well, the question really is: What hose or seal didn't blow . Mine is very temperamental in the cold, the couple times I've had it out below 45, the thermostat housing oring leaked.
    pulled the plastic off the side didn't see anything obvious. there are two open ended hoses mounted to a bracket that says see service manual before removing carborator, what do those come from? and is it safe to fill the overflow bottle and fire it up so see if it happens again or I see coolant coming out anywhere?

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    Quote Originally Posted by Venture Capitalist View Post
    yah all good advice. I should look at the water pump, but would that cause it to explode out of there. I mean it literally xploded all the coolant onto my leg. In looking at the manual it showed a little rubber plug on the side of the head, would water shoot out of there if the plug popped out? Now the overflow bottle up in the fairing, does that have a hose coming out of the bottom other than the one to the radiator? If so, would it all blow out of there all at once? Sorry if I'm asking stupid questions, this is my first water cooled bike. I have changed water pumps and thermostats on my cars before but that's about it
    IMHO, DEFINITELY!!! But consider the source here brother,, I am as backyard of grease monkey as they come!! My logic (and it often gets me in trouble) is that if the impellar cannot move water (anti freeze) the coolant in the cooling jackets in the jugs will quickly turn to steam and POOF = high pressure on the entire system and then POOF again - something somewhere is gonna pop.. Also,, (and again,, take this with a grain of back yard wrench spinning thought) I would probably implore a pressure tester on the system (like used on cars) to see if I could detect what blew... Remove the cap, fill the system with water (no since in using anti freeze just for testing), attach the pump, run up to 13 pounds or so and watch for leaks.. Among other obvious places to check, I would look the head coolant bypasses over carefully.. They are located behind the plugs and you hav,, wait a sec,, watch this (with another grain of salt of course LOL):
    Remembering my brother and friend:
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    Proverbs 18:24 - "There is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother"..
    Miss you bro - Puc
    Life is just one step after another..on a rocky hill side-Sly

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    I agree with Cowpuc, and he is one of the master mechanics of these machines, rides them to 250k miles before retiring them. But personally I would still simply top off radiator, fire up, and watch as it gets hot. The cap is easy to get at, and I'm not sure the overfill will be enough to get you started. Next I would pressure test, Autozone rents these simple kits. My extreme limited mechanical knowledge has me thinking a stuck thermostat and the system built up pressure. But in reality, it could be as simple as a split in a hose.

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    Quote Originally Posted by cowpuc View Post
    All good advice IMHO.. Personally, if it were my 83 I would check the water pump impellar.. 4 of the 6 84/83's that I have retired still had the OEM plastic impellars in themand 3 of those impellars were scalped clean of the plastic edges that push the water. It is pretty hard for them to cool properly if the water pump is not flowing anti freeze. If it were mine and unless it showed that someone had changed the impellar, I would rebuild the pump completely so I didnt end up with an iffy shaft/seals when replacing the impellar.. Make sense?
    Puc is 100% correct! In order for a pump to cycle it must fall within design spec - or - it will only serve to stir! That is the starting point, period

    Quote Originally Posted by Venture Capitalist View Post
    yah all good advice. I should look at the water pump, MUST
    but would that cause it to explode out of there. I mean it literally xploded all the coolant onto my leg. In looking at the manual it showed a little rubber plug on the side of the head, would water shoot out of there if the plug popped out? Now the overflow bottle up in the fairing, does that have a hose coming out of the bottom other than the one to the radiator? If so, would it all blow out of there all at once? Sorry if I'm asking stupid questions, this is my first water cooled bike. Not water cooled liquid cooled!
    I have changed water pumps and thermostats on my cars before but that's about it
    In addition, this water is the incorrect fluid to use outside of emergencies.
    You mentioned that you add a cup of water every other... OK well water can not handle the BTUs resulting from combustion heat, for one it hasn't the density and will by it nature generate hot spots.
    The fact that it requires constant topping off mean that the system is open somewhere.

    note: we see this model at times with over limit compression readings, this in and of its self causes over heating problems, such as slow to warm then over heating, then misfires.

    Like puc said then again like Puc said, "always start with a compression test" cept in this case pump first

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    Quote Originally Posted by Patch View Post
    Puc is 100% correct! In order for a pump to cycle it must fall within design spec - or - it will only serve to stir! That is the starting point, period



    In addition, this water is the incorrect fluid to use outside of emergencies.
    You mentioned that you add a cup of water every other... OK well water can not handle the BTUs resulting from combustion heat, for one it hasn't the density and will by it nature generate hot spots.
    The fact that it requires constant topping off mean that the system is open somewhere.

    note: we see this model at times with over limit compression readings, this in and of its self causes over heating problems, such as slow to warm then over heating, then misfires.

    Like puc said then again like Puc said, "always start with a compression test" cept in this case pump first
    ok I found the problem, the main hose going into the top of the head has a big crack in it, I just poured water into the radiator and it came gushing out without even firing it up. Anyone know what that hose is called. Since i'm going to be working on it I think I will get a new thermostat too, since apparently from what you guys are telling me that is probably what caused the pressure build up in the first place. And with summer right around the corner I might as well take a look at the water pump too. btw when I top it off I always use 50/50, I never put straight water in it accept just now to see what was going on with it. I just wanted to say thanks to all the guys here that helped me with the good advice. Time to call the parts store now. THANKS EVERYONE!!!

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    [QUOTE=cowpuc;1074398]IMHO, DEFINITELY!!! But consider the source here brother,, I am as backyard of grease monkey as they come!! My logic (and it often gets me in trouble) is that if the impellar cannot move water (anti freeze) the coolant in the cooling jackets in the jugs will quickly turn to steam and POOF = high pressure on the entire system and then POOF again - something somewhere is gonna pop.. Also,, (and again,, take this with a grain of back yard wrench spinning thought) I would probably implore a pressure tester on the system (like used on cars) to see if I could detect what blew... Remove the cap, fill the system with water (no since in using anti freeze just for testing), attach the pump, run up to 13 pounds or so and watch for leaks.. Among other obvious places to check, I would look the head coolant bypasses over carefully.. They are located behind the plugs and you hav,, wait a sec,, watch this (with another grain of salt of course LOL):


    oh crap. look to me like the only way to get to the hose is to take the gas tank off. Is that the case? Looks like I might have to undo part of the frame. If that is the case I don't suppose you have any videos on that?

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    Default Re: coolant blowout

    I'd venture to say the problem is 37 year old rubber heater hose. You said your temp gauge was in the normal range and the blowout did not burn you severely. I'd replace the T-stat just because and all the rubber hoses, cause they're old, ya' know.

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