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Discussion Starter #1
So today I was about to go on a ~150 mile ride with a big group and when I pulled up, one of the guys pointed out that coolant was coming out of the overflow line at a pretty good rate.

Upon further inspection my coolant overflow tank was all the way full up to the brim and bubbling (not boiling I dont think, just bubbling like one of the lines was releasing air into it or something). At least the coolant that we saw--there wasnt TOO much that came out, but what did come out came out pretty quickly, this wasnt just a little trickle. Coolant temp only read 212F and this was after a little stop and go. Then it stopped, I rode it around the block and back, decided not to go on the ride and rode it back to the garage and havent noticed any more leaking since.

On the way back I cruised some back roads to try and get it cooled down and it got down to 158F which seems a little low for this 76 degree day, then as soon as I pulled in, it quickly shot back up to like 180, what seemed a good amount faster than normal.

3-4 riding seasons ago I flushed the coolant and put in engine ice, have had zero issues up until today. 2011 with only ~7000 miles. Could I have just gotten an air bubble in the system? Could the coolant have just gotten low and it started to boil or something?

Any input appreciated!
 

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Is your oil milky?

Could be a blown head gasket. Stuck thermostat maybe as well.
 

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Uh...if the overflow was bubbling, that means it was boiling. Water boils at 212 degrees Fahrenheit. At sea level pressure that is. The cooling system is pressurized to make the water boil at higher temps. If the higher temp fluid goes to the overflow tank, it boils and fills up and spits out. That's the way it works and that's why it was bubbling. There's no air in the system and it's not putting air in there to make it bubble up.

You need to open the radiator up, refill the system, and then see if it repeats itself (which it probably will). If it pissed out that much coolant then there's air in the system and you nee to get rid of that or it will boil much sooner and cause lots of issues. The most common issue with this type of thing is a bad cap that won't maintain pressure correctly. But there's all types of other things that could be wrong like the head gasket, or the age of that that engine ice crap, or a plugged up radiator, etc, etc. You need to repeat the problem with a fully serviced cooling system and trace down the real issue from there!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
It wasnt boiling....Imagine if you took a straw in a glass of water and gently blew bubbles through it; there was just one stream of bubbles coming from what I think is the hose that is supposed to suck coolant from the overflow tank back into the cooling system, which makes me think air got in there somehow. My oil doesnt look like a latte so I dont think my head gasket went bad. I'm going to start with just flushing it out and putting new in and gonna see if it happens again and if so, start with a new radiator cap and go from there.

Could this happen because there is to low of coolant in the system?
 

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It wasnt boiling....Imagine if you took a straw in a glass of water and gently blew bubbles through it; there was just one stream of bubbles coming from what I think is the hose that is supposed to suck coolant from the overflow tank back into the cooling system, which makes me think air got in there somehow. My oil doesnt look like a latte so I dont think my head gasket went bad. I'm going to start with just flushing it out and putting new in and gonna see if it happens again and if so, start with a new radiator cap and go from there.

Could this happen because there is to low of coolant in the system?
It was boiling. :idea:

You can do one of two things here. You can continue to think that it would look like your pot of Ramen noodles cooking and you can chase down some issue with your head gasket leaking air into the system and causing itty bitty bubbles to form and escape out like you're blowing a straw in your chocolate milk.

Or you can understand that the boiling fluid in the hot engine case will produce air and exits the system through that tiny rubber line that connects to the reservoir tank. Which shows as a stream of bubbles. And that hot boiling fluid expands and gets pushed into the reservoir through that same line which will then overflow the reservoir and piss it out onto the ground. But then you'll remember that you blowing bubbles in your chocolate milk does the same thing and overflows your cup like that. :headshake: And since your coolant level fluctuates up and down with cooling and heating cycles, having too much coolant in there will level itself out in 1 to 2 good rides and stay static from there aside from any minimal evaporation.

So, I suggest you just remove the straw from the engine which will keep the bubbles away. :hello:
 
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