Oil, Water, and Steam Oh My! - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
Engine / Exhaust / Cooling
\ From the radiator, through the case and out
the exhaust. If it has to do with the cooling,
engine or exhaust, discuss it here!

 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-20-2013, 10:11 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Orlando Fl.
Posts: 57
iTrader: (0)
 
Oil, Water, and Steam Oh My!

OK this may turn into a long post but want you to know all the details. Once again, son's '98 bought last year with 6000 miles on it, now at about 15,000. Thought low mileage was good but didn't think about dry hard seals etc.
Have had over heating issues before. Blew a hose, had a bad fan and replaced thermostat. After that, blew head gaskets, had water in the cylinders. Replaced those and it ran for a month or so and bent a valve, replaced rear head. Since then been running fine. A week or so back he had hot water and steam come out of overflow bottle. Refilled radiator seemed ok. Yesterday went to Daytona, I saw steam coming out from overflow bottle but he said temp was normal. When we got home I saw steam coming out of oil breather filter and after a while condensation on the filter. We check oil and added water but seemed ok. About 10 min later he called me to say that oil was blowing out the breather filter (it was after dark). Had him come back and I saw it was oil and water. Site glass was fogged up, when I drained oil it was a dark gray with a little whitish marbling thru it, but not brown.
No oil in the water that I can see.
1. If impeller seal was bad will water get in oil or oil get into the water?
2. Compression is good, don't have a leak down gauge but hook air up to cylinder and could not hear or see escaping air.
3. Engine runs fine, starts right up and has power.
4. Once it's warm I get it to throw water out of filler cap when I rev engine and spin the water pump.
Maybe when it got low on water it built up steam that pushed itself thru somewhere and out the breather.
Any Ideas? Hopefully something simple I missed.
Thanks,
Ken in Orlando

Last edited by ffltstn; 10-20-2013 at 10:13 PM. Reason: sp.
ffltstn is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-20-2013, 10:47 PM
Sparky!!!
 
slimvulcanrider's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 8,695
iTrader: (3)
   
Garage
I would venture the impeller pump seal
slimvulcanrider is offline  
post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-21-2013, 12:27 AM
Members who have donated towards server costs
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chandler, Arizona
Posts: 3,024
iTrader: (0)
 
Not sure what you are calling an oil breather filter on a Vulcan 750. But water in the oil is the main clue. Could be the water pump, or a leaking head gasket. Or far less likely, a crack in one of the cylinders or the crankcase. You could have a bad head gasket, and still have good compression when cold. Things change when they get hot. One thing. Since you are definitely getting coolant in the oil, get any coolant out of it quick, and run distilled water only until you find the problem. Ethylene glycol coolant and oil mixed together make glue, and it will plug up every oil passage in the engine pronto. It's not a pretty sight. I have torn down engines that looked like they were full of cottage cheese.

I am a motorcyclist, NOT a biker.


1997 Vulcan 750, purchased about a week ago
2006 Sportster 1200 Low
2013 Royal Enfield Bullet 500, converted to carb
2001 Yamaha XT225, heavily modified
2004 Honda Rebel 250
1979 Vespa P200E
2002 Vulcan 750 parts bike
1994 Yamaha XT225 parts bike
VN750Rider/Jerry is offline  
 
post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-21-2013, 01:52 AM
Senior Member
 
Big Nick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Australia.
Posts: 493
iTrader: (0)
 
heat.

I guess you replaced the oil filter when you got it, did you drop the old thermostat in boiling water to check it's operation?The last thermostat I bought was good for 2 years by the manufacturers standards.
The fan you replaced, you obviously checked the thermo control switch for the fan,located in the radiator.
It may also pay to check the temp gauge sender unit. It may be a one in a million failure.
A readable oil pressure gauge, fitted for a test should help rule out oil pressure as a problem.
I have also seen garages put pressure testing gauges in radiator fillers, to check for pressure leakage.
There's a few idea's, if you have not done them yet. The more tests you do, shortens the list of possible causes.

Who walks into the Lions Den, and comes out alive?
The Lion!
12 inch apes
1986 A3 series 750
Slash cut stainless mufflers
170 rear tyre
Custom cyane blue paint, wheels included
Relocated regulator rectifier
Solo mod
Stainless washable oil filter
Six pack rack
LED indicators and flasher unit.
Replaced CDI
Coasters
Penrite 10/50
Oil pressure hot at 1000 rpm 20 psi, 4000 rpm 60 psi
Shows 67000 kms
Jets 38 idle Mains 120 changed to 40 idle 135 main.
Big Nick is offline  
post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-21-2013, 05:50 AM
Jack of all trades
 
M_Angell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Westland, Michigan
Posts: 2,863
iTrader: (11)
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by slimvulcanrider View Post
I would venture the impeller pump seal
Sounds like it to me too...

2003 vn750
1988 Pontiac Trans Am (project/driver)
M_Angell is offline  
post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-21-2013, 08:58 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Orlando Fl.
Posts: 57
iTrader: (0)
 
ok after reading your replies and doing a little reading this is what I believe.
The water side of the seal would have more pressure and therefore push water into the oil. If the water got low and caused steam to form it would push thru the seal easier?
I read of a weep hole in bottom of case, I think I had a water drop from there. If he keeps it to short runs and it stays cool and full of water can he drive it till I get the parts in and a day off?
Ken
P.S.
I have done an ear shave so added a filter to the breather hose.
ffltstn is offline  
post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-21-2013, 09:26 PM
Members who have donated towards server costs
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chandler, Arizona
Posts: 3,024
iTrader: (0)
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ffltstn View Post
ok after reading your replies and doing a little reading this is what I believe.
The water side of the seal would have more pressure and therefore push water into the oil. If the water got low and caused steam to form it would push thru the seal easier?
I read of a weep hole in bottom of case, I think I had a water drop from there. If he keeps it to short runs and it stays cool and full of water can he drive it till I get the parts in and a day off?
Ken
P.S.
I have done an ear shave so added a filter to the breather hose.
I definitely wouldn't run it with antifreeze in it if it is getting into the oil. If you have plain water in the cooling system, and the leak is very minor, it should be ok to use it for very short trips for a very short time. The problem is, even with plain water, it is heavier than oil, and will settle to the bottom, where the oil pump will pick it up when the bike is started. It would be a shame to ruin an otherwise good engine because of a bad seal.

I am a motorcyclist, NOT a biker.


1997 Vulcan 750, purchased about a week ago
2006 Sportster 1200 Low
2013 Royal Enfield Bullet 500, converted to carb
2001 Yamaha XT225, heavily modified
2004 Honda Rebel 250
1979 Vespa P200E
2002 Vulcan 750 parts bike
1994 Yamaha XT225 parts bike
VN750Rider/Jerry is offline  
post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-23-2013, 04:10 AM
Senior Member
 
gibbo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: South of England
Posts: 442
iTrader: (0)
 
My VN 700 had stood for years in a back garden and the water pump seal and outer bearing were both destroyed by corrosion. It produced the effects you have. You can remove the right hand side cover. This allows you to remove the pump impeller so you can inspect the mechanical seal. To remove this seal you will effectively destroy it, but you can then see the first sealed bearing, mine had lost its rubber sealing and was a sorry rusty mess (my weep hole was blocked). If the pump is the source of your problem this bearing will have lost it's rubber seals and will be passing coolant through into the crankcase. To replace this bearing requires a crankcase split as it needs to be drifted out from the inside. It does give you the best chance of removing all the "mayo" from inside. If you remove the impeller, and the mechanical seal looks good, then most likely the pump is not the problem. Here is a picture of my old pump assy. You can see the broken mech. seal and what remained of the "sealed" bearing, the shaft was heavily corroded. There is a small o-ring in the inside of the impeller which was missing on mine, also the retaining nut was stripped (It is supposed to be a "use once and discard item).

One can never have too many alternative forms of transport.
gibbo is offline  
post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-24-2013, 11:12 AM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Orlando Fl.
Posts: 57
iTrader: (0)
 
Thanks everyone for you input. Everything is pointing to a bad impeller seal. I will pull it apart and order the parts.
Is the nut something special I should order too or can I pick up a lock nut locally?
if the bearings are starting to go the bike will be sold. I am not pulling that motor for a
3rd time in less than a year.
I assume the O-ring goes into the groove on the shaft? Mine had some rubber in there but not much of an O-ring shape.
Thanks again
Ken

Last edited by ffltstn; 10-24-2013 at 01:17 PM.
ffltstn is offline  
post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-25-2013, 06:53 AM
Senior Member
 
gibbo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: South of England
Posts: 442
iTrader: (0)
 
The nut is a special locking nut, and not that expensive if I remember. Yes, the o-ring goes in the groove of the shaft and seals the shaft/impeller junction.

One can never have too many alternative forms of transport.
gibbo is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Bookmarks

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

Once registered, your User Name"cannot be changed". We can make exceptions within 7 days, but after that, it is set in stone.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome