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Discussion Starter #1
My 2000 ZR-7 had 26.500km (16.000 miles) when I bought it. The sale included a small service check up, with new oil and oil filter. The oil used was Motul half-synthetic 10w40.

At 28.000km (17.000, miles) I noticed I needed to add a bit oil becouse the level was at Low. So I bought a liter of Motul half-synthetic 10w40 and filled till Full.

But after this..the oil consumption went totally out of line!
Now at 29.000km (18.000 miles) the one liter can Motul oil is empty.
Yesterday I filled the oil level to Full..and after one louzy ride (50km/ 30miles) it was at Low again.

*How do I check my oil? Allways on center stand with cold engine.
*How do I drive: sporty but allways warming up the first few miles.
*Any leaking: no, no leaks nor 'sweating' oil.
*Any other changes? Yes, I changed the stock exhaust by a Bos can (with db-killer). I didn't change the manifold, air filter, mappings etc.

Another small issue: everytime I rev up to 6.000 rpm or more and suddenly release the throttle, the exhaust sounds a 'booooom'. No flames, but I do get blue-grey fumes at that very moment. Only the Bos exhaust does this, didn't have this with the stock exhaust.

Any idea what could be wrong?
 

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Hey Black kiwi,

That's a lot of oil. Mine uses about 1 liter per 4000km.
I can't help you with your problem, but wanted to tell you how nice it is to finally see soneone else from Holland over here :D. Greets from Groningen!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hey Black kiwi,

That's a lot of oil. Mine uses about 1 liter per 4000km.
I can't help you with your problem, but wanted to tell you how nice it is to finally see soneone else from Holland over here :D. Greets from Groningen!
Goedemorgen :notworthy

You don't happen to drive a black ZR-7? Last week I was in Groningen city, and I spotted a black ZR-7 close to the Martini Hospital.

Yea the oil consumption really bothers me. I'm no technician..and I've asked my dad and a friend (who both have more experience).

Dad: don't worry, just add a bit engine cleaner and place the original exhaust back
Friend: DO WORRY! Major engine damage possible, get the compression checked right away, maybe piston or valve error.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Just returned from the garage. The mechanic there told me it could only be two things: Piston seals with to much tolerance or Valve seals not working properly.

In both cases, the engine must be taken out of the frame and needs a full assembly. Price estimate: 1500 euro. There is no danger in driving on right now if I keep a close eye on the oil level.
 

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Hey B K,
A big :welcome: to the forum, from Scotland :)

Sorry to hear you have problems with your 'new-to-you' bike.

If you haven't got a visible leak then the only way you can loose oil is by burning it.
The state of your exhaust should give a clue as to how its getting into the combustion chamber.
Is your exhaust tail pipe oily or sooty?
Oily would indicate the exhaust valve stem seals, sooty, the inlet valve seals or the piston rings.

At less than 20,000miles you shouldn't be experiencing engine wear, but on a 10 year old bike it is possible that your velve stem seals have hardened and cracked, especially if the bike's not been used for a while.

One other obscure possibility;
Are you 100% sure that the garage used the oil they claimed?
There have been cases before where a bike has been happily running on mineral oil, then giving all manner of oil problems when switching to fully synthetic.
Is your oil pressure OK? (Does the warning light go out as soon as the engine fires up, if not before?)

But you are correct in your belief that the bike is safe to ride, just keep a close eye on the oil level.
 

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No that wasn't me on the black ZR!. Mine is lightning candy blue, or whatever Kawasaki calls it :D

I'm sorry (kloten in dutch) to hear you engine might need a full overhaul. Do keep us posted on how this story develops.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
@ Funk: yes that is indeed pretty 'kloten'. This is actually the second motorbike I bought this year. The first was a Suzuki GSX-F 750 I bought from a private seller (so no warranty). I drove it 20miles home...the only miles I would ever drive on it. We found out that the 'minor adjustments it needed was actually a broken big-end bearing. It would take 1500euro to fix the engine. Because I didn´t want to spend a motor-season on fixing instead of driving, I traded this Suzuki (+a lot of extra cash) for this 'perfect' ZR-7 at the local dealer. Lucky me
 

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Discussion Starter #8
@ Greame:
*thanks for the welcome and the reply

*I had to google the word Sooty, but I found it ;). I will check this. Can I see this at the rear side where the db-killer is? Or do I need to remove the Bos tailpipe?

*I've been shopping at this garage for over 8 years now, they are pretty expensive..but I think I can trust their oil knowledge.

*The bike was imported from Italy. I am the first non-italian owner. The previous owner did not know the definition of TLC. I fixed the outside with a lot of care..and it looks great now. But what happened inside..who knows?

*The oil pressure is OK, never seen the warning light at strange times.

*I'll keep track on paper on the miles I drive and the oil needed to add from now on...I don't think the garage can help me if I say 'It uses oil..but I don't know when and how much'

Anyway..tomorrow is a 5-6 hour trip planned. I'll keep you guys posted!
 

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Johnny Blue Lightnin'
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Bad engine. Possible. It could have stuck, worn, or broken piston rings. It could have bad valve seals, worn valve guides, etc.... this would all be considered major repair. The ZR is not known for these problems. These would all require engine teardown and inspection.

Before I went that far I'd try removing the spark plugs and pouring some top engine cleaner into the cylinders and letting it soak. If the rings are stuck in the ring lands this may free them. You may need to refill the cylinders a couple times. After a couple days slowly crank the engine over by hand with the spark plugs still out to make sure there is no more fluid on top of the pistons. Then drain and change the oil and filter with regular old non-synthetic oil. Crank the engine with the starter then reinstall the spark plugs and see what happens over the next couple days.
 

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Johnny Blue Lightnin'
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Bad engine. Possible. It could have stuck, worn, or broken piston rings. It could have bad valve seals, worn valve guides, etc.... this would all be considered major repair. The ZR is not known for these problems. These would all require engine teardown and inspection.

Before I went that far I'd try removing the spark plugs and pouring some top engine cleaner into the cylinders and letting it soak. If the rings are stuck in the ring lands this may free them. You may need to refill the cylinders a couple times. Every few hours slowly crank the engine over by hand. (Spark plugs still out) You can put the bike in gear on the center stand and rotate the rear tire to rotate the engine. After a couple days with the spark plugs still out to make sure there is no more fluid on top of the pistons. Then drain and change the oil and filter with regular old non-synthetic oil. Crank the engine with the starter then reinstall the spark plugs and see what happens over the next couple days.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thx for the reply Jon.
Before I take the bike to the garage or try the engine cleaner..I'm first going to 'analyse' how much oil it loses and when. Today I started with oil on Full and drove around 5 hours / 200miles while following a R1 on some of Hollands finest bendy roads...so a sporty ride ;)

Tomorrow, when the engine is 100% cold, I will check how the oil level is doing....keeping my fingers crossed.

By the way: the garage where I went and asked for some tips, told me that adding an oil cleaner COULD work (pouring a 30euro bottle of special oil cleaner into the oil - let the engine run on idle for a couple of hours - replace the oil and filter) but didn't give it much chance for this type of motorbike. I didn't really asked why, tho..
 

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Discussion Starter #12
And Graeme: I checked the exhaust for sooty or oily...and it was a bit sooty, and absolutely not oily.
 

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Also take a look inside the air box for excess oil in the bottom of the air box. Seems when I had mine and removed the crank case breather tube from the bottom of the air box and routed it behind the motor with the other drain tubes, the oil consumption stabilized. But I do remember that riding it in a "sporty" fashion, as well as long highway streatches, resulted in a higher oil loss than normal.
 

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Why not do like Graeme says and try switching to a regular old dinosaur oil and see if that helps..I'd try a different shop or get the experience of changing the oil myelf if I were you..Could just leave the filter alone and change the oil by itself I would say...
 

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Discussion Starter #15
@ Martin: I'll check that. And yes the most oil consumption was noticed after long runs of sporty riding and 400miles (80 to 90 mph) of highway.

I think I will drop by the garage where I bought this ZR-7 in a month. Still have a half year of warranty. Then you might ask: why not go now??
*The store is at the other end of Holland.
*The store would need some time fixing or analysing..so end of season for me.
*I think it would be wise to collect some oil use data.

Yesterday I drove 200 miles...and I had to add just 0,1 liter of oil.

p.s. Strange that even with very sporty driving, the fuel useage is still 1:19 (around 46 miles per (US) Gallon)
 

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For comparison

My ZR-7S has over 60k miles. After a 600 mile trip last weekend, I added .1 liter to top it off. Then, my engine rarely sees 7000 rpm. I use Shell Rotella non-synthetic and a new Wix 24941 filter every oil change.


Jack
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I think my driving is a bit more sporty. I will accelerate to 10.000rpm every ride (but not all the time lol)
Normal touring is keeping the engine at 6.000 rpm so a slight twist of the throttle will give an immediate result.

Today I drove +/- 100 miles and it looked like the oil level was still at Full. I did get a lot of remarks that I was creating larger and longer lasting (10sec) blue fumes/clouds.
Kinda pisses me off that people keep on commenting my bike when I put so much effort in restoring it. But I guess they were just being helpfull.

Found another flaw...the front springs are soggy. After driving a lot of miles, it is hardly possible to drive a roundabout or to take other sharp & slow turns. I need to make the corner in 3 turns. It feels like the front tyre is glued to the road - but in a bad way. Above 50mph the bike feels more solid and I can corner like it was ment to be.

My tyres are Michelin Pilor Road 2 CT2's, both 2000 miles old, got the right psi, no strange wearing visible and all bearings look/feel okay. The only thing left: front springs. But can the respond differently to heat (fork oil getting hot)?
 

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Johnny Blue Lightnin'
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The ZR will use a bit of oil at constant high rpms. I've ridden in groups of ZRs and seen puffs of blue during shifts and even one 02 that smoked a lot on decel. He still has it and it doesnt smoke anymore. Maybe it was not broken in way back then. Long streaks of smoke are not normal. Maybe your bike will straighten itself out with more riding. It sounds like it is better already.


The front springs are notoriously soft. An upgrade will help.
 

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BK,
At 20K miles the forks could be due a spring upgrade, or maybe just a change of oil.
From what I've seen of Italian roads (off the Autostrada) the forks will have had a very hard life. You could try the PVC spacer mod, that stiffens up the front a little.

For the benefit of our friends in The New World, 'roundabouts' are 'traffic circles'.
I know there are very few in the USA, but I do know of one on the north side of Morro Bay just off the PCR.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Does adding the PVC spacers get anywhere near the effect of installing progressive front springs? In both cases new oil would be used.

The suspension and the oil usage will be both 'tackeled' in fall/winter...so I'm afraid I won't have any usefull updates soon.
 
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