Date: 20-10-20  Time: 21:18 PM

Author Topic: Head gasket busted?  (Read 701 times)

orion kid

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Head gasket busted?
« on: 19 August 2020, 06:14:45 PM »

I dropped my 08 FZ6/S2 into a local shop near work last week for a stuck brake light and got him to do the fluids as it'd been over a year since anyone looked at it. I mentioned that I'd had a bit of coolant hiss and spill about 6 months ago but had put it down to an air bubble. He topped it up. A couple of days later the bike dumped a load of the new coolant in a big hissy fit, out top and bottom of hoses when it was switched off.


When I rang my guy to tell him this and get advice he's saying the head gasket is most likely busted, that it would cost upwards of 5-600 quid to repair possibly more because there could be further damage in the heads and that he thinks it might be better to get a new engine !


This is a pretty huge shock given that 5 days ago I thought I was the proud owner of a mint condition bike with only 20K miles on. Now I might have scrap on my hands. Actually he questioned the mileage also and said he thinks it's probably clocked, and that these engines shouldn't blow gaskets until 100K.


What do you guys think. Is this the only possible reason for the coolant dumping incidents ? What would you do ?
« Last Edit: 19 August 2020, 09:04:27 PM by orion kid »

BBROWN1664

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #1 on: 19 August 2020, 07:14:59 PM »
Where is the coolant coming from? The overflow hoses from the rad cap and coolant bottle or somewhere else?
Do you have oil in the water ? (colour frothy etc)
Do you have water in the oil? Milky oil mayo on the cap etc?

Could just be the rad cap needs replacing for a few ££
Could just be the thermostat not activating the fan etc
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Trebus

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #2 on: 19 August 2020, 07:23:21 PM »
You can check MOT history online for free to verify previous mileage recordings too.

Fazerider

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #3 on: 19 August 2020, 09:44:35 PM »

When you get a mechanic diagnosing the worst possible cause for a problem on the basis of foc-all evidence, he’s really not interested.
There are lots of possible reasons for cooling problems.


Presumably the bike has a temperature gauge or warning light… was it reading hot?
Does the radiator get hot?
Had the fan come on?
Does the water pump work?
Are the radiator passages blocked? (If coolant changes have been neglected you can get a gelatinous, snot-like material forming which can block small pipes.)


If you’re not confident in your spannering abilities there’s no shame in taking it to a professional for investigation.. and if he sucks air through his teeth and tells you you need a new engine without eliminating the simple things, take it somewhere else.

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #4 on: 19 August 2020, 11:52:42 PM »

When you get a mechanic diagnosing the worst possible cause for a problem on the basis of foc-all evidence, he’s really not interested.
There are lots of possible reasons for cooling problems.


Presumably the bike has a temperature gauge or warning light… was it reading hot?
Does the radiator get hot?
Had the fan come on?
Does the water pump work?
Are the radiator passages blocked? (If coolant changes have been neglected you can get a gelatinous, snot-like material forming which can block small pipes.)


If you’re not confident in your spannering abilities there’s no shame in taking it to a professional for investigation.. and if he sucks air through his teeth and tells you you need a new engine without eliminating the simple things, take it somewhere else.






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never look down on anyone unless you're helping them up.

red98

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #5 on: 20 August 2020, 07:02:18 AM »
yes...well said FAZERIDER...


was the coolant changed or topped up at the garage ?...i find a slow fill the best for avioding an air lock,if the garage just topped it up in a rush that might be where your problem is....as always, check the easy bits first.....plenty of help on here if you need it  :thumbup
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darrsi

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #6 on: 20 August 2020, 07:33:55 AM »
First thing i would do would be to properly clean the cooling system with a bottle of Radflush. If it's never been done before then over time the waterways can get get slightly furred up (like a kettle) which will eventually lead to poor circulation and overheating.


Initial signs can be the fan coming on, or coolant being dumped normally from the expansion tank.


Add the fact that it was really warm weather last week would only enhance the problem.
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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #7 on: 20 August 2020, 08:30:43 AM »
You say top and bottom hoses, from which, the rad, oil cooler or the water pump?

Head gaskets rarely just blow and if they do they don't pressurise the cooling system so as to blow hoses.  They pressurise the the expansion tank, or blow coolant out via the the cylinders/exhaust. 

Head gaskets are extremely reliable and mainly blow due to cooling failures of either the cooling system or lubrication, not the other way around. 

1. What colour is the expansion tank?
2. Is there excessive water in the exhaust, i.e. it's rusty inside, is there a lot of steam (condensation) after a few minutes of starting the bike especially in the mornings. I not talking about the normal condensation when it's first started I'm talking about a second period of stream a few minutes after the first?
3. Have you been losing coolant over this 6 months since the 1st hiss?
4. Has the coolant temp warning ever come on?

My experience is telling me this is more likely a cooling system problem, failed water pump, jammed thermostat, collapsed rad etc, if left it will bugger the head gaskets, it's possible it already has, but likely it's not.

Oh and change your stealer ;)
Later

darrsi

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #8 on: 20 August 2020, 10:17:19 AM »
Another simple one as well is make sure all hose clips are tight, so up by the rad cap and even the bigger rad pipes. A torch can help show up where coolant is leaking from too, as the liquid will have a shine to it.
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orion kid

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #9 on: 21 August 2020, 04:30:55 PM »

Thanks guys so much for the tips. Yeah I verified the mileage is genuine at least. I will get a pro to do a full check of the cooling system next week and get a second opinion.


Where is the coolant coming from? The overflow hoses from the rad cap and coolant bottle or somewhere else?
Pretty sure I saw some spurting out of here, it was also spilling out from somewhere below. I didn't manage to jump off in time to see exactly where



Also this overflow looks melted ?



Do you have oil in the water ? (colour frothy etc)
Sorry not sure how to tell/ where to check


Do you have water in the oil? Milky oil mayo on the cap etc?
No


Presumably the bike has a temperature gauge or warning light… was it reading hot?
Not especially - it was reading 97C when it spilled this week


Does the radiator get hot?
Pretty sure it does


Had the fan come on?
Not during the spill it hadn't but it does come on at other times yes.


Does the water pump work?
Sorry not sure how to tell/ where to check

What colour is the expansion tank?
Not sure what that is (yet) but if its the same as the reservoir, that is an opaque white and I've never been able to take a reading from it between the mix max lines. Not sure if that's normal or not.

Is there excessive water in the exhaust, i.e. it's rusty inside, is there a lot of steam (condensation) after a few minutes of starting the bike especially in the mornings. I not talking about the normal condensation when it's first started I'm talking about a second period of stream a few minutes after the first?
No, don't think so


Have you been losing coolant over this 6 months since the 1st hiss?
No just a couple of spills 6 months ago, then nothing until it was refilled last week


Has the coolant temp warning ever come on?
Don't think so.
« Last Edit: 21 August 2020, 04:55:08 PM by orion kid »

Gnasher

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #10 on: 21 August 2020, 05:02:16 PM »
From the pictures it's almost impossible to tell you what's going on.  The second picture shows a hole the drain elbow for the coolant reservoir (expansion tank) cap, which could have sprayed coolant onto the bottom rad hose union you've circled in the first picture.


It's unlikely it's been leaking from the hose union as there's no discolouration I would expect to see on a leaking hose union.  My money is on the water pump, collapsed rad core or a leak somewhere in the system, which has caused the bike to over heat and dump water into the expansion tank. 


You need to get the pump, rad and system leak checked.     
« Last Edit: 22 August 2020, 08:49:48 AM by Gnasher »
Later

orion kid

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #11 on: 08 September 2020, 09:24:51 PM »
Hey thanks for all the advice. So I dropped it into another larger outfit who do a lot of yammies a couple of weeks back. They checked the cooling system, ran it for an hour, told me the coolant is circulating fine, fan coming on over 100, and off as expected once it's done its job. Found no problem with the water pump. They refilled it and made some comment about what was in there maybe wasn't the best coolant. 5 or 6 rides later there's been no further hiss and spills, so honestly not sure now what the hell it was. My initial guy also said he didn't like the sound of the engine but I have read on other forums that the Fazer has a rep for a slight rattle in the engine and that it's normally nothing to worry about?

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #12 on: 08 September 2020, 10:42:49 PM »
Maybe it had an airlock?

The cam chain tensioner might be on the verge of needing another click. Sometimes an Italian tune up can help it on its way 😀

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Re: Head gasket busted?
« Reply #13 on: 09 September 2020, 12:44:23 AM »
I have read on other forums that the Fazer has a rep for a slight rattle in the engine and that it's normally nothing to worry about?

The cam chain "tick" is a well known feature of the FZ6. Some people take it out and replace it with a manual one, but unless you've been running it with almost no oil or it's done a *lot* of miles, it shouldn't be a problem.