Coolant change - with photos - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-10-2008, 01:51 PM Thread Starter
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Coolant change - with photos

Here are some pics I took while changing the coolant on my 2005 Vulcan 750.



What you'll need:
* Antifreeze
* Distilled water (mix with antifreeze to make a 50/50 mixture)
* Solvent/Cleaner (I used some brake parts cleaner)


* Socket set (10mm socket and extension especially)
* Phillips screwdriver (I used an electric but a manual will do fine)
* Open end wrench - 10mm.
* Drain pan - not pictured.



Step 1. Start with a cool bike. The coolant is under pressure when the engine is warm. NEVER OPEN THE RADIATOR ON A HOT BIKE.

Step 2. Put the bike up on the center stand. (Here's a helpful video - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fC6jGdzn4V4 ).

Step 3. Place the drain pan under the front of the bike.



Step 4. Use your socket set to remove the drain plug from the lower right side of the crankcase. Coolant will start to drain so make sure the pan is in position.



Step 5. Use your socket to remove the drain plug from the lower right side of the radiator. Coolant will continue to drain, so position the pan as appropriate.



Step 6. Remove the right-side steering cover. It is secured by two small screws and latches to the left side cover, but is easily removed.



This will expose the radiator cap.



Step 7. Remove the radiator cap by turning counterclockwise and pushing down. Note that when the radiator cap is removed the coolant may begin to flow more freely. Make sure the drain pan is still positioned properly.



Step 8. Using the 10mm socket, remove the drain plugs at the bottom of the front cylinder (right side) and rear cylinder (left side). Be ready for more coolant to drain.

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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-10-2008, 02:10 PM Thread Starter
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Step 9. Using the socket extension and the 10mm socket, remove the coolant reservoir tank overflow cover.





This will expose the reservoir tank. Remove the reservoir tank cover, and then gently pull out and empty the tank. Do not disconnect the hoses, and when reinstalling make sure the hose is still connected.



Step 10. You may wish to take the bike off the centerstand and gently move it left to right to ensure all remaining coolant is removed. In my humble opinion, as long as the coolant changes are done on a regular schedule, there should be no need to remove every single last drop. If it has been too long between services you may wish to consider flushing the system with distilled water. I will not cover this procedure at this time.

Step 11. With the bike back on the centerstand, reinstall the reservoir tank and cover, the cylinder drain plugs, the crankshaft drain plug, and the radiator drain plug. Leave the radiator cap off.

Step 12. Fill the reservoir tank to the "full" mark. Using a funnel, slowly begin filling the radiator filler neck with coolant.





Step 13. Once full, turn your attention to the bleed screw. The manual suggests removing the fuel tank, and if you haven't done this or a similar procedure before I recommend the same for 2 reasons. First, removing the tank will give you a clearer picture of what you are doing and makes access to the bleeder screw easier. Second, removing the tank helps you understand more of how your bike functions, and that's always a good thing.

However, it is easy to access the bleeder screw without removing the tank.




Step 14. Open the bleeder screw slightly and using one hand on the open end wrench (I believe 10mm again!) and one hand filling the radiator with coolant fill until coolant begins running smoothly from the bleeder screw, at which point you should close the bleeder screw.


Step 14. Fill the radiator up to the radiator filler neck and reinstall the cap. Replace the steering cover.

Step 15. Check the system for leaks. Start the engine, warm it up and then shut it down. Check the coolant level in the reservoir tank and fill if necessary.
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-10-2008, 02:15 PM Thread Starter
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Step 16. Using the cleaner/solvent and a rag, wipe down any areas where coolant was exposed to painted surfaces.

Further information:

The manual reccomends a 50/50 mixture of antifreeze and distilled water. DO NOT USE TAP WATER. Coolant should be of a type designed for an aluminum engine and radiator. Total capacity is approximately 1.8 litres.

Do not store unused antifreeze/water mixture in a gallon water jug. I've done this before and the mix winds up leaking out of the jug.

Dispose of used coolant properly. Many auto parts stores will take it. DO NOT DUMP IT IN YOUR BACKYARD. It is toxic and will kill household pets.

Next week - Air filter cleaning/replacement.
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-10-2008, 02:46 PM
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Very nice write-up and pictures! Thank you!

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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-10-2008, 07:36 PM
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Another exellent work posting! I'd love to see an engine pull like this. lol Seriously though. It would be interesting. Great Job Harvey birdman!
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-10-2008, 10:42 PM
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Kudos! I'm sure we'll be referencing to this writeup often! Wish I'd had a guide like this back when I did my coolant change.

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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-10-2008, 11:32 PM
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That is great, helps for those with questions

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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-11-2008, 12:33 AM
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I may have done something wrong but I found it necissary to pull the tank off on my 86 to get to the covers.......


Also I highly recommend a GREEN coolant as checking it's fill level on the outside of the resevior is easier. I goofed and went with the YELLOW and it's much tougher to check the coolant level.

1986 vn750-
purchased on 06-26-07 (19k miles)
22,000 miles, averaging 100+ miles per week.
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-11-2008, 09:37 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vn750joe View Post
I may have done something wrong but I found it necissary to pull the tank off on my 86 to get to the covers.......
That is what the manual reccomends, and there's nothing wrong with taking off the tank. It's a tight fit to get at it with the tank on but i was able to do it.

Now if only the weather would improve up here I could take it out for a ride.
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-11-2008, 09:38 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kanuck69 View Post
Another exellent work posting! I'd love to see an engine pull like this. lol Seriously though. It would be interesting. Great Job Harvey birdman!
One thing at a time, heh.
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