I think I have a cracked engine block. - TwoWheelForum: Motorcycle and Sportbike forums
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post #1 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-23-2007, 08:39 PM Thread Starter
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I think I have a cracked engine block.

Here's the story:

About 3 weeks ago, I happened across my '05 ZX-10R at a local dealer. It had 4000 miles on it. The bike had clearly been ridden on a track; I could tell that just by looking at the tires.

The dealership told me that the bike was purchased at a Kawasaki auction, and was one of their demo bikes.

I worked out a deal with them, that included free tires (it needed new tires badly) and a free jacket, and happily rode my ZX10 home. I bought the bike as-is. They tried to sell me a warranty at an outrageous price, I declined.

Less than 24 hours after I get it home, I notice that I have a leaky fork seal. I contact the dealership, pissed off. Again, they offered me the warranty (nearly $400 for 1 year), assuring me that it would then cover the repairs on the fork seal. I then heard about the 35mm film trick, and how Kawasaki considers fork seals as wear items and the $400 warranty may not cover the problem, anyway. I tried the film trick and it seems to have worked. I also got the dealership to give me a new fork seal, free of charge. Getting it installed would be on my dime (or time).

I have since mounted the new tires, put on a full set of Champ's sliders, made my own license plate bracket and fender eliminator, and installed a Tankslapper tank protector kit, slowly making the bike my own.

When I was looking the bike over at the dealership, I noticed some dried up coolant inside the fairing. It was on the same side as the coolant reservoir and overflow tube, so I thought it was nothing but a little overflow - no big deal.

I have put about 1000 gentle miles on the bike. I am stepping up from a SV650 and am still getting the hang of all the power.

Last week, I put it up on stands in the back of my garage to get it out of the way. The next day, I see a 2" diameter wet spot under the bike, right where (I think) the overflow tubes exit. Again, I don't think much of it, and figure I'll look closer for it when I get the chance.

Well, I got the chance, and figured if it was a leak, I would track it down and fix it. I assumed it would just be a matter of changing out a gasket, or a hose, or just tightening some things up. I started drying up coolant (there wasn't much at all) and tracking down the source of the leak. This is what I found:

Click

The drip seems to originate at that tiny silver spot on the side of the block. I can't find any coolant above or around that point, such as a pinhole in a hose, or a leaky hose clamp or anything else. I wipe the drip off, and it comes right back, seemingly from that tiny spot on the block. There is no coolant in the oil, and the leak is incredibly slow. It seems to stop when the engine is warm. I put over 200 miles on the bike the Saturday after I discovered the leak, and not a drop leaked out the entire time. Now that the bike has been sitting (haven't had the time to ride since Saturday), the drip is back.

I'm pretty freaked out right now, afraid that my block is cracked, and I know the dealership sold me the bike that way.

I have emailed the dealer, asking if the warranty is still available. I haven't told him what the problem is. He hasn't answered. I just emailed him again, asking him if it was their practice to wash their hands of a customer once the sale closes.

If he offers me the warranty again, I'm going to take it, and get this looked at. If he doesn't, am I screwed? Do I have any recourse here?

If the block needs replaced, on my dime, there's no way I can afford it; I'm going to get stuck paying a loan on a bike that's all but ruined, and I've barely ridden it!

2006 Kawasaki ZX-10R
Tank Pad, StompGrips, Homemade Fender Eliminator Kit

Last edited by jtemple; 05-24-2007 at 10:40 AM.
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post #2 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-23-2007, 08:47 PM
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i wish i could help on that one. im scratching my head too. im sure someore will chime in w/ suggestions.

01 CBR929RE ------------- 01 DRZ400S SOLD ------------ 95 CBR900RR

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post #3 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-23-2007, 09:34 PM
 
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God, I'll probably get flamed for this, but here goes. If there is no coolant in the oil, and no oil in the coolant, JB weld the hole. The hole may be directly over a water jacket.

As for the dealer, you are probably screwed. You know how you have ridden the bike, but they don't. Even so, they sold the bike 'as is'.

I hate that you've had this problem. I think we all have a fear of something like this happening every time we buy something used.

Good luck and keep us posted.
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post #4 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-23-2007, 09:38 PM
 
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Looks like the leak could be at the mating surface. Doesn't the gasket on the mating surface to the upper left of the fluid look like it's wet?
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post #5 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-23-2007, 09:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6doublefive321 View Post
God, I'll probably get flamed for this, but here goes. If there is no coolant in the oil, and no oil in the coolant, JB weld the hole. The hole may be directly over a water jacket.

As for the dealer, you are probably screwed. You know how you have ridden the bike, but they don't. Even so, they sold the bike 'as is'.

I hate that you've had this problem. I think we all have a fear of something like this happening every time we buy something used.

Good luck and keep us posted.
It's worth a shot at least... Or you can look around for a kick ass welder...

Quote:
Originally Posted by No Worries View Post
Looks like the leak could be at the mating surface. Doesn't the gasket on the mating surface to the upper left of the fluid look like it's wet?
I can't really tell... Cross your fingers that this is the case...

Do you have gap insurance? If so, you can gear up, find a twisty road near a cliff and pin the throttle, dump the clutch, and get the insurance... I would say you are probably out of luck with the dealer though...
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post #6 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-23-2007, 10:02 PM
 
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buying as is, is like playing russian roulette... sorry you got burned, im surprised they even offered you the warrenty again after you rode the bike off the lot.

IMO the dealer has done all they needed to do. They offered you the warrenty twice, and even supplied you free parts to fix the fork seal. i hate to see somebody get screwed, but i think thats the direction this situation is heading.....



you can allways bump up to full coverage and total the frickin thing.
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post #7 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-23-2007, 11:22 PM
 
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I would want to know exactly where the leak was coming from before I do anything drastic. I would pressurize the cooling system. Either at the blowby tube at the cap or modify a cap with a hose. I would then put my compressor on it and pump it to 20 pounds or so. I would try a hot and cold engine and see if and where it leaks.
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post #8 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-24-2007, 07:41 AM Thread Starter
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It's definitely coming out below the mating surface. I can't find coolant pooling up anywhere, except from that spot in the picture, where it appears out of nowhere, right on the side of the block.

It doesn't seem to leak when the engine is hot. I'd guess it's because the metal heats and expands, sealing the hole.

2006 Kawasaki ZX-10R
Tank Pad, StompGrips, Homemade Fender Eliminator Kit
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post #9 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-24-2007, 08:19 AM
 
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I don't know what the laws are in NE, but in Mayland, used vehicles purchased from a licensed dealer carry a 30 day bumper to bumper warrenty,by law, regardless of any "as-is" clauses; you may want to contact your Dept of Motor vehicles TODAY, and see if the laws in your state are similar; if so, ask for a copy of the law and the code and subsection.....you need to contact your dealership TODAY both in person and in writing (bring a signed, dated letter with you to the dealership detailing the problem.

Make no threats in the letter, merely detail the leak and request repairs under the appropriate code). Even if you have a similar law in your state, don't be surprised if the dealership refuses to fix the problem. Many employees are not aware of all the consumer protection laws, so don't get mad or frustrated. Just ask for the GM, hand him a copy of the letter and telling him you are asserting your rights under the appropriate clause (if such rights exist in your state; they may not; in some states, "as-is" means just that, even from a dealer).

If you have no such rights in your state, go back to the dealer and tell them you want the warrenty, without detailing your problem. wait a week or so to insure that the warrenty has been registered (they should give you a number to contact as well as a warrenty registration number) and then contact the warrenty co as to the process you should follow.


Good luck.
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post #10 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-24-2007, 08:27 AM Thread Starter
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Here's a quote from the Nebraska DMV website regarding the Lemon Law:
Quote:
As Is

A car that is sold "as is" is one which is sold with no warranty. The dealer and/or seller has absolutely no obligation to make any repairs, regardless of the vehicle's condition.

The law will not help you, even if a major breakdown occurs during the trip home from the dealership. Once you have signed and paid for a vehicle, it is yours you do not have three days to reconsider the contract.

2006 Kawasaki ZX-10R
Tank Pad, StompGrips, Homemade Fender Eliminator Kit
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post #11 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-24-2007, 08:29 AM
 
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put a little block sealer, or JB weld.. doubt dealer will do much with this.

You said it doesnt leak when you ride it.. well there is ur hint from above.. ride every day! 24/7
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post #12 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-24-2007, 10:59 AM
 
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Originally Posted by jtemple View Post
Here's a quote from the Nebraska DMV website regarding the Lemon Law:
Sooooo....looks like you need to get that warranty!!!
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post #13 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-24-2007, 12:12 PM Thread Starter
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I know someone that knows someone that might be able to weld it.

Regardless of what happens with the crack, I'm going to buy the warranty if the dealership offers it to me again.

2006 Kawasaki ZX-10R
Tank Pad, StompGrips, Homemade Fender Eliminator Kit
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post #14 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-25-2007, 09:06 AM Thread Starter
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One response I got over on zx-10r.net is from a guy that owns a bike shop. He looked at my picture and said that there's no coolant behind that part of the engine. That if I had a crack there, it would leak oil, not coolant.

I dug through the repair manual. It appears as if that part of the engine is the crankcase, and does not have a water jacket around it. The cylinders, which do have a water jacket around them, seem to be up above, where the machining changes to that silver color.

If that's true, that's good news!

What's confusing about the whole thing is that I can't see the coolant coming from any other source. The drip appears to form out of nowhere. I can't see/feel spray hitting that surface (it's not under pressure when the bike is off, anyway) or see a drop falling on that spot. It appears to weep right out of the side of the case.

2006 Kawasaki ZX-10R
Tank Pad, StompGrips, Homemade Fender Eliminator Kit
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post #15 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-25-2007, 02:14 PM
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Did you inspect the back side of that coolant hose?

I would start to tear into that thing... track it down...




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post #16 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-25-2007, 02:24 PM Thread Starter
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That's what I'm going to do, starting tomorrow morning.

2006 Kawasaki ZX-10R
Tank Pad, StompGrips, Homemade Fender Eliminator Kit
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post #17 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-25-2007, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldetymebiker View Post
Sooooo....looks like you need to get that warranty!!!
The dealer confirmed that the warranty is no longer available. I haven't told them what the problem is yet.

2006 Kawasaki ZX-10R
Tank Pad, StompGrips, Homemade Fender Eliminator Kit
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post #18 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-25-2007, 02:35 PM
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The warrenty isn't available cause its been over 30 days.




-Chris
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Was: 2002 Kaw ZX-9R
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post #19 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-25-2007, 03:04 PM Thread Starter
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It hasn't been over 30 days. I bought the bike on 5/2.

2006 Kawasaki ZX-10R
Tank Pad, StompGrips, Homemade Fender Eliminator Kit
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post #20 of 153 (permalink) Old 05-25-2007, 03:25 PM
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THat's what I'm saying. Most places only offer that for 30 days on used bikes. Now if it was new then you can usually buy those extended warrenties as long as its still under the manufacture warrenty. Figuring there is nothing wrong with it when its still under that manufacture warrenty cause you would have it fixed for free.




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