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Cranked up 'Blue Max' last week and as he was warming up noticed slight cloud of steam (with slight sweet aroma of coolant) coming up from under front cowl fairing & handlebars. Could notfind any leaks. Took 'MAX' to local Honda Shop, but they could not find a leak either, nor did 'MAX' release any steam while in their shop......possible cause: I was keeping 'MAX' under a cover outside, while they kept him inside a 'conditioned' garage. Condensation that formed on the engine just 'burned off' as the engine got warm...(didn't explain the sweet coolant aroma) :shakehead:

Today while checking the oil (and a general look around) I noticed green coolantpuddled in the groove on top of the engine...right side (below radiator cap). I checked the coolant level in the resevoir and the indicator showed no coolant on the stick. I added coolant to proper level, took off radiator cap, inspected it and put it back on. Inspected all the hoses and connections that were within sight and also looked for any indication of wet or coolant stains running down from up above...NOTHING !

Cranked up and letidle until running temp. was reached...inspected everything again. Did not see any leaks...rode down the rode about 10 miles. By this time the puddle of coolant had pretty much evaporated off the engine top...parked on centerstand while still running and allowed temp to get high enough to make cooling fans come on and stay on. Inspected everywhere that I could see again.......saw NO DRIPS or leaks....NO coolant on engine top.....NO steam....NO sweet aroma.....geesh...I'm kinda at a lost here....:baffled:

I'm wondering if the radiator cap may not have been put on tight and this is where it came from. :doh:

Any suggestions as to where to look from here ???? :stumped:

(SEE ATTACHED PIC)
 

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I think I would do an oil analysis, which will show additives from anti-freeze and/or glycol. You can get pre-paid sample kits from a local lubricants distributor - Shell, Exxon-Mobil, or Chevron for example.

Editing now, what was I thinking? Obviously the leak wasexternal.
 

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I wonder if there is a crack in the coolant overflow chamber, and the level of the coolant has gotten below the crack?

Just a thought, it's just above where the coolant is.
 

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i wonder if the 1500 has coolant lines through the carbs those may have cracked. just wondering cuz i never been on a 1500 but i know newer bikes do.
 

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Check the coolant resevoir tank and hose connection. I used a small plastic tie on mine. It was leaking very slightly and dripped at the same place as yours is doing:waving:
 

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Lots of good possibilities for a coolant leak or seep. My 1500 showed a bit of a seep at Calhoun. I'd been noticing a coolant smell once in a while for a couple months but at Calhoun I noticed a wisp of steam during warm up. The level in the expansion bottle doesn't go down much, it's still where it was at Calhoun which was over 3000 miles ago.

The hose clamps on the radiator hoses are often a bit loose and allow a bit of seepage. Likewise there are a couple of small hoses on top of the engine that could leak as well as the tubes between the radiator neck and the expansion tank. The hose attachement to the water pump isn't too likely because it's below the point where you're seeing coolant. Check out the radiator hoses first.
 

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After finding the coolant (2 days ago)...I've idled it to operating temp and also run it down the road a piece, several times. Been checking it for the past two days and NO COOLANT , as well as NO STEAM at start up. Also, the coolant level in the reservoir is exactly the same place it was after filling it the other day.

Weird :alco:.....Still wonder if my radiator cap was the problem...seems that problem stopped after removing and reinstalling radiator cap ....will continue to check it through the weekend closely....am going a ride tomorrow and/or Sunday, so that should tell me if there is definitely a problem.

Thanks for all the input !! :bowing:
 

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Your radiator cap leaked. Removing it and putting it back on a couple time has allowed it to seal. I think you can get a new one at Napa that will fit, much cheaper than the Honda Dealer.

If you do not have a problem this weekend, just replace the radiator cap.

Kt
 

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More likely your radiator cap wasn't properly seated. When you removed and replaced it that corrected the problem.
 

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Bluewinger,

I had the same problem. It was the return hose that went back into my Coolant tank, and also, a loose/broken radiator cap can cause this intermittently. Take it off, and look at the rubber under it, and see ther are any cracks.

BlueWinger wrote:
Cranked up 'Blue Max' last week and as he was warming up noticed slight cloud of steam (with slight sweet aroma of coolant) coming up from under front cowl fairing & handlebars. Could notfind any leaks. Took 'MAX' to local Honda Shop, but they could not find a leak either, nor did 'MAX' release any steam while in their shop......possible cause: I was keeping 'MAX' under a cover outside, while they kept him inside a 'conditioned' garage. Condensation that formed on the engine just 'burned off' as the engine got warm...(didn't explain the sweet coolant aroma) :shakehead:

Today while checking the oil (and a general look around) I noticed green coolantpuddled in the groove on top of the engine...right side (below radiator cap). I checked the coolant level in the resevoir and the indicator showed no coolant on the stick. I added coolant to proper level, took off radiator cap, inspected it and put it back on. Inspected all the hoses and connections that were within sight and also looked for any indication of wet or coolant stains running down from up above...NOTHING !

Cranked up and letidle until running temp. was reached...inspected everything again. Did not see any leaks...rode down the rode about 10 miles. By this time the puddle of coolant had pretty much evaporated off the engine top...parked on centerstand while still running and allowed temp to get high enough to make cooling fans come on and stay on. Inspected everywhere that I could see again.......saw NO DRIPS or leaks....NO coolant on engine top.....NO steam....NO sweet aroma.....geesh...I'm kinda at a lost here....:baffled:

I'm wondering if the radiator cap may not have been put on tight and this is where it came from. :doh:

Any suggestions as to where to look from here ???? :stumped:

(SEE ATTACHED PIC)
 

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I recently had a leak and it took me a long time to sort it out. There are a bunch of hoses in there.

In your picture there is a tiny hose right above your arrow. there is short little hose just like it on the left front, just about 2 inches long, and in my case it turned out to be that one. But I also ended up replacing several others in the process.

But I didn't replace them all, and a year later I have another leak. So I have to start the search all over again...... arrrrggggghhhhh!
 

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I had a similar problem with my 1500 and all I got was an ocassional drip on the garage floor when I got home from work of an afternoon. After looking several times, in frustration I finally pulled out the right fan and found the hose clamp on top of the thermostat had worked loose, tightened that and no more drips. Hard find, Easy fix.
 
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