Kawasaki ZX-10R Forum banner
1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
250 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So last week I decided to change the oil, adjust the chain and clean the bike up before I used it for work on Monday.

Well Monday comes around and I go to the garage and see that there is a small oil puddle beneath my bike; I figured that maybe my drain plug wasn't tight enough but it was and it was coming from somewhere other than my plug. After inspecting, I noticed that my valve cover gasket was leaking on the front left side. Weird that it would just all of a sudden leak but I decided to leave the bike at home and take my Harley (The Irony) instead.

So I figured if I have to fix the leak, might as well check my valves. I have over 33K miles on the bike and have NEVER checked my valves. It has run strong and idles smoothly. After inspecting, I found only two exhaust valves a little tight. I bought some shims and put it all back together. I had never done this before but am mechanically inclined. It wasn't hard at all, just time consuming as I did it all without the tech-manual (for the exception of the clearances).

I got it all back together and it wasn't starting. I began to second guess everything I had done and so I started to remove the airbox in order to see the throttle-bodies while turning it over. After cranking it on and off for a few minutes (on and off), I cracked the throttle and it began to come to life. 15 minutes later I took it for a quick spin and the thing still pulls like a raped ape.... Ya gotta love these Kawi's, they are pretty much bullet proof!

One tip I found helpful: Before I removed the cams, I used a small scribe to mark the chain with the gears on both intake and exhaust. It made it REAL easy to align it perfectly, and removed any second guessing of whether it was a tooth off or not.

So what started as an oil-change and bike clean, ended up with me adjusting valves. Now I can rest easily for awhile.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
860 Posts
Nice job. Its not very common for a modern sportbike's valve cover gasket to leak but suprisingly that also happened on my buddy's 04 zx10. Setting the timing is definitely no fun. I've done it more times than I'd like in the past. I'm definitely enjoying the idea that I don't have to worry about it for awhile. You're really lucky you only had to do two of them. Nice suggestion on the scribe to keep everything lined up, wish I had done that my first time.
 

·
Speed Freak
Joined
·
12,730 Posts
yep those infamous kawi valve cover gaskets... :-( I've seen a lot of problems with those suckers in almost every model. IDK what it is but they seem to just always leak on the eyelet cut outs.... I have gotten away on my own bike a few times by removing the gasket, cleaning everything and re-installing with black silicon sealant and not had a worry. I defiantly need to pull the valve cover and check this motors valves, quite noisy!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,202 Posts
every zx10 ive seen at the shop has a valvecover gasket leak. on the newer zx6's kawi has a repair if need valve covr gasket update free of charge
 

·
ZX-10R enthusiast
Joined
·
6,562 Posts
Question, do I have to replace the valve cover gasket?
And where can I get the shims from?
One tip I found helpful: Before I removed the cams, I used a small scribe to mark the chain with the gears on both intake and exhaust. It made it REAL easy to align it perfectly, and removed any second guessing of whether it was a tooth off or not.
Thanks for the tip, as I'm about to perform the same maintenance.
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top