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Discussion Starter #1
I am sure this has been covered already, but I did it this weekend and wanted to mention a few pitfalls to avoid. I did not do anything terrible, just spilled some coolant. ;D

Anyway, here is the procedure:

1. Make sure the engine is cold before you begin and place the bike on its center stand.

2. Remove the bottom cowling

3. Remove the four lower screws (front and rear) holding the front fairing in place. Then remove both mirrors, and four plastic screws above the headlight holding the cowling to the instrument panel. Place a towel on the front fender and slide the cowling forward and rest it on the fender. Leave the headlight and turn signal wires connected. Make sure you have moved the fairing far enough to have free access to the coolant filler cap on the left side and the overflow bottle on the right side.

4. Slowly loosen the filler cap (not on the radiator itself, but slightly above it) and the overflow tank cap and leave them resting in place.

5. Place a suitable container under the water pump on the lower right side of the bike. Remove the drain plug on the bottom of the water pump using an 8 mm box end wrench. Slowly remove the plug and be prepared for the coolant to come out in a fast stream!

6. Remove the radiator filler cap to facilitate faster draining of coolant.

7. After the coolant drains, reinstall the water pump drain plug. Reuse the same plug gasket if it has no groove cut in it, otherwise replace. Do not overtighten the plug, just tighten snugly with a short 8 mm wrench.

8. Remove the two bolts holding the overflow bottle in place. Use a 10 mm socket and a ratchet for this. Tilt the bottle and empty the coolant into a waste container, holding it close to the bottle. There is no need to disconnect any hoses from the coolant bottle for this. You can even flush the bottle with distilled water and pour the contents out. Reinstall the bottle and tighten the bolts - again only snugly, you do not want to break the plastic tabs.

9. I used Kawasaki coolant, which is not premixed. I prepared a 50/50 mix using distilled water. You only need one quart of Kawi coolant to replace the coolant on this bike. Once you dilute it, you will have two quarts and the bike takes a little less than 2 quarts.

10. Use a suitable clean funnel and place inside the filler neck above the radiator. Start pouring the fresh premixed coolant in, but do it slowly! I started pouring it too fast and it overflowed and spilled on the ground. When the coolant level reaches the top of the filler neck, stop pouring and remove the funnel.

11. Pour fresh coolant into the overflow bottle on the other side until you reach the upper mark (full hot).

12. With the cap off the filler neck and no cap on the overflow bottle neck, start the engine and idle for about 1 minute. This will purge the air out of the system eliminating air pockets. Stop the engine and reinstall both caps. The filler cap must be twisted about 3/4 of a turn or so to seat fully.

13. Wipe up any spilled coolant, if any got on painted bike parts, wipe it off, then wipe the spot with a wet paper towel dipped in water. Coolant can damage painted surfaces.

14. Reinstall the front fairing and the bottom cowling. Dispose of the old coolant properly. Make sure you do not leave it in an open container as pets are attracted to sweet taste of ethylene glycol and can die from it.

15. Take the bike for a test ride and watch the temperature gauge. It should be in the normal range. Park the bike and let the engine cool down. Then check the coolant level in the overflow bottle, it should drop slightly below the full mark. If it drops below the lower mark, add some coolant to the bottle so the final level is between the two marks.

Things you need for the job:

1 quart of Kawasaki coolant
1 quart of distilled water (usually sold in 1 gallon containers)
drain container (at least 4 quarts capacity)
graduated container to premix the coolant (at least four quart capacity)
funnel
8 mm box end wrench
ratchet and long 10 mm socket
Phillips screwdriver
new water pump drain plug gasket if the old one is damaged

Kawasaki recommends replacing the engine coolant every two years. If your old coolant is dirty, you may need to remove the thermostat and flush the system. I did not need to do this as my old coolant was clean and the bike is relatively new.
 

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OR,

Take out old coolant, put in new.

FOG
 

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OH yeah I forgot, you can change your oil , and you clutch springs ,the same way.

FOG
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Your owner's manual says: "Have your authorized Kawasaki dealer perform the coolant change".
 

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No, subsitute "engine" for "coolant"

FOG
 
G

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FOG said:
No, subsitute "engine" for "coolant"

FOG
Amusing, as always, but I have to disagree. There are many newbies out there who want to maintain their bikes themselves but have zero experience. We hear their tales of woe on this site all the time as they try to work on their bikes. Those of us who have been working on iron for many years can tend to forget the many stupid mistakes we made while we were learning. When you are inexperienced, even the simplest tasks can be daunting. The OP has taken the time here to present this in a way that I think will benefit some newbies.
 

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True enough but how far back do you need go? One guy doesn't know titey from loosey. do you need to tell them which end of the screwdriver to hold in their hand? How about, can you even read what I'm typing?
There has to be a point of reasonable skills to start a set of instructions. Do you really need to say get a catch pan if your trying to drain something.
Some ought to stick to typing on their computer and leave the Motorcycle un molested.

Yes I know my instruction were brief, I intended them to be to exacbrbate the point.

Yes I mean "exacbrbate"

FOG
 

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Discussion Starter #12
FloridaEX500 said:
Fairing removal is unnecessary for coolant change.
I did not say anything about fairing removal. I slid the fairing slightly forward out of the way so that I would have good access to the filler neck above the radiator and the coolant overflow bottle. Try to rmove the overflow bottle bolts and tip the bottle to empty it with the fairing on!
 

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You don't have to.

Just reach in under the tstat housing and pull the overflow tank hose off (with fairing fully attached) let it drain away.

Same with a valve adjustment- no reason to pull the fairing.
 
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FOG said:
True enough but how far back do you need go? One guy doesn't know titey from loosey. do you need to tell them which end of the screwdriver to hold in their hand?
FOG
Well, it used to be pretty common that kids would spend time doing things like building model cars and airplanes, working with Erector sets, etc. and began developing basic mechanical skills. Popular Mechanics used to publish articles and books on projects for young people to build, some of them pretty challenging. Since the advent of the internet and video games, that's all changed. So now you have teenagers and young adults who, when they visit a forum like this and get inspired to work on their own bikes, are really starting from zero. For them to face their machine with a shop manual in one hand and a wrench in another would probably cause them to break out in a cold sweat, so I think that what the OP has done here could help get them started.
 

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Yes agreed a nice new gen 2 fairing has great flexibility but some of the old gen 1s are brittle and will crack after repetitive rough removals and reinstallations. Like mine. Some things on an ex are better off left alone.

No arguement that the ops work on his tutorial is good positive work.

Yes some of us start at ground zero and some of us could write a book on ex500s.
 

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K-woppa said:
FOG said:
True enough but how far back do you need go? One guy doesn't know titey from loosey. do you need to tell them which end of the screwdriver to hold in their hand?
FOG
Well, it used to be pretty common that kids would spend time doing things like building model cars and airplanes, working with Erector sets, etc. and began developing basic mechanical skills. Popular Mechanics used to publish articles and books on projects for young people to build, some of them pretty challenging. Since the advent of the internet and video games, that's all changed. So now you have teenagers and young adults who, when they visit a forum like this and get inspired to work on their own bikes, are really starting from zero..
This is oh so true and it is not restricted to bikes.
 
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