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Went for a ride this weekend and started out in serious traffic foobar out of Tacoma, WA. Sitting in traffic the temp gauge will go to almost redline, back down just a tiny bit then back up (I kinda of assume this was the fan kicking in?). It never went to the actual redline but was worrisome. Once the traffic cleared it came right back down well under the halfway mark and had no problems.



Is this "normal"? Something to worry about? Don't know the history of the coolant as I got the bike in mid-June. Maybe time for a flush?



Appreciate the help, thanks.
 

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Make sure your fan does run, but this sounds like a thermostat issue.
 

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Stupid question but is the fan always on or on demand?
 

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Yeah - definitely flush (clear water 2x) and refill.

Many of the 1500s will be underfilled in the radiator due to cracks/vacuum leaks along the tubing to the coolant reservoir tank (often in the elbow fitting at the top of that tank).

So as you open the radiator (cool, of course) get a good look at the fill level there - it should be right up to the cap level. You may underfilled ... Of course, the flush/refill will correct the underfill and repairing any leaks/cracks in the reservoir tubing will help to maintain proper coolant levels.
 

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> The two most common breaks are in Hose#21 (between both radiators)...






...and Hose#4 (goes into the reserve tank)
 

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Thanks for the help guys.
 

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that damned elbow (#2) and the hose that feeds it (#11) also tend to develop issues --- a hole in either of them will cause you to draw air into the radiators when the bike cools, leaving you underfilled.
 

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jpelmer wrote:
Stupid question but is the fan always on or on demand?
The fansare demand and the same thing happened to us in North Carolina last year when it hit the triple digits. The gauge would peg. I never lost any fluid and it never overheated. When I got back home I found out it was the raditor cap. Simple enough to check and simpler to fix. I bought one at the local auto parts store for something like ten bucks.
 

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Thanks. Going to check this out this weekend ... same as you I don't see any leaks and doesn't actually hit the redline but ...



It's due. Better to do it now. The oil and filter, air filter, check lubes and be ready for a nice long ride over labor day.
 

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it should not get more than 5/8 dial...if so there is a problem...even in hot traffic...fan switches go bad frequently and also leaks at the elbow at the resivoi...but the fans must come on when the fan switch gets hot enough
 

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I hit some nasty 100 degree heat in traffic latley and my 97 Aspencade never went over the 1/2 way mark, but thew fan kicked on and off very often.
 

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Thanks SnowMan. I have confirmed that the fans are coming on ... radiator level is full when cold. Reservoir seems empty (? or just low) though (dipstick has fluid but can't see into bottle well enough to confirm). Still not showing any leaks that I can see. Going to do a flush this weekend and see if that clears up the problem.
 

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jpelmer wrote:
...Reservoir seems empty (? or just low) though (dipstick has fluid but can't see into bottle well enough to confirm)...
> The dip stick has two holes in it, denoting the range between Low and Full.
> Also, the stick has to be inserted Straight Down... not sideways (eg You can bend the stick to enter horizontally, but then will get a false reading)
 
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