Overheating or just hot outside? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 12 Old May 3rd, 2018, 8:34 pm Thread Starter
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Overheating or just hot outside?

Recently adjusted valves, now it runs slightly hot. In my region of south central Pennsylvania daytime average temp suddenly went from 60 to 90 degrees. At 90+ degrees it runs slightly hot at any speed. Stop & go road conditions will result in overheating (fans come on). Last summer I never noticed a problem with overheating. Any thoughts? Thank you.

Manheim, PA
2002 LT BlueBeast
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post #2 of 12 Old May 3rd, 2018, 9:50 pm
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

test your radiator cap, make sure the reservoir is full to the mark (cold) better still, put a new rad cap on, you can get to it with out taking off any plastic, I would start there.

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post #3 of 12 Old May 3rd, 2018, 10:28 pm
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

My '99 was overheating to the point of bogging down; I disconnected the airbox temp sensor (next to the rad cap) no more issues. Yea, check coolant levels and age of coolant too. Not sure about the valves having any effect. Good luck
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post #4 of 12 Old May 4th, 2018, 12:31 am
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

Look, these bike are air breathers. Below 55 mph the engine temperature starts to climb. Keep the radiator clean. Change your coolant every 4 years. Get behind a truck and watch the temp start to go up, that shows you how sensitive they are. The cooling system is too small.
Pick out the bugs in the fins, pick out the small rocks, wash with some hydrogen peroxide to get bug guts out, flush with some brake cleaner spray to get street oil grunge out. Then a good soap and water flush. To do a really good job every couple of years remove the radiators and renew the coolant. Clean on the bench.

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post #5 of 12 Old May 4th, 2018, 4:07 pm
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

On the 99-2004 the gauge will go almost to the red before the fans kick in and that is normal. Then it should go down a little after they are running. Panic only when the red dash light comes on.

John
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post #6 of 12 Old May 4th, 2018, 5:46 pm
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

The fans coming on does not equal overheating.
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post #7 of 12 Old May 4th, 2018, 6:53 pm
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

Quote:
Originally Posted by beech View Post
Look, these bike are air breathers. Below 55 mph the engine temperature starts to climb. Keep the radiator clean. Change your coolant every 4 years. Get behind a truck and watch the temp start to go up, that shows you how sensitive they are. The cooling system is too small.
Pick out the bugs in the fins, pick out the small rocks, wash with some hydrogen peroxide to get bug guts out, flush with some brake cleaner spray to get street oil grunge out. Then a good soap and water flush. To do a really good job every couple of years remove the radiators and renew the coolant. Clean on the bench.
I would not use brake cleaner while the radiators are on the bike. This stuff can be be very rough on rubber parts and there are a lot around the radiators. Usually Dawn does a good job and is quite safe.

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post #8 of 12 Old May 4th, 2018, 7:09 pm
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BluBeast View Post
Recently adjusted valves, now it runs slightly hot. In my region of south central Pennsylvania daytime average temp suddenly went from 60 to 90 degrees. At 90+ degrees it runs slightly hot at any speed. Stop & go road conditions will result in overheating (fans come on). Last summer I never noticed a problem with overheating. Any thoughts? Thank you.
My LT runs right in the middle of the gauge (middle of the indicator middle marker) from about 50-75 F. Colder than that and it runs at the lower edge of the marker to a few bars below when below 30 F or so. 75-90 F it runs towards the top of the middle marker. Above 100 F it runs a few bars above even at cruise speed (as when I rode through Death Valley and the Texas panhandle in temps from 94 to 102 F). In traffic, or below 30 mph or so, it will run up to 3/4 scale or so and then the fans kick on periodically.

I have never had my LT truly overheat. I did have a GTL overheat in Switzerland. We rode up a gravel trail to a fairly high mountain (2500 meters or so) in first gear in temps around 65 F. The K1600 flashed a warning on the dash and started losing power so I had to stop for 10 minutes about 3/4 the way up. The GS and RT I was riding with motored to the top without issue. I suspect my LT would have been rather toasty also in those conditions. That is one reason I decided not to buy a K1600. I occasionally ride dirt roads in PA and the LT runs at 3/4 scale, but we don't have any 2500 m mountains here. As Beech stated earlier, BMW K series street bikes seem to have marginal cooling systems. I don't think the R series are nearly as bad.

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1976 Kawasaki KH400
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post #9 of 12 Old May 6th, 2018, 9:07 am
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

Normal operating temps:

Thermostat opens at 185 F

Fans kick in at 221 F

Red light comes on at 239 F (overheat).
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2009 K1300GT Red Rocket
2009 R1200GS (Gone)
2005 K1200LT Ocean Blue Blue Wizard 110 K and counting...
2006 Bushtec Turbo+2 Spell
2004 330 Ci Convertable
K4AN

Have ridden a Motorcycle in all 48
But lack DE, MA, RI and CT with the 2005 LT

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post #10 of 12 Old Sep 3rd, 2018, 11:49 pm
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

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Originally Posted by jzeiler View Post
On the 99-2004 the gauge will go almost to the red before the fans kick in and that is normal. Then it should go down a little after they are running. Panic only when the red dash light comes on.
Very glad to read this. I am used to my Vstrom 1000 that the temp stays steady pretty much all the time no matter what I am doing. I was on my first ride on my new to me 2002 LT. I was above tree line and came across a Colorado traffic jam in the high country. As I was stuck in stop and go on a steep incline while the multitudes of vehicles were trying to find parking spots on the side of the road my temp gauge went to the white line just before the red. I was freaked out a bit. The fans came on and it did not go into the red but I thought I had problems.
I still checked out the coolant situation and found that it was not up to the minimum mark. I thought it was empty but after opening things up I realized the coolant reservoir is much bigger than the small amount of coolant it needed to top it off. I still cracked open the radiator cap and blew into the reservoir until coolant came out of the radiator cap to make sure there wasn't air in the radiator.
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post #11 of 12 Old Sep 4th, 2018, 12:56 am
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

My 2004 runs hot in the summer on main roads. I run it above 4300 rpm most times so it runs the upper range of the temp gauge, but never overheats where the light comes on. As was stated. The cooling system is a little on the small side. But does work..

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post #12 of 12 Old Sep 4th, 2018, 6:35 am
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Re: Overheating or just hot outside?

My fans would come on anytime while sitting in traffic, regardless if it was 90-degrees or 40-degrees outside. It never overheated.

Mike Trevelino
Williamsburg, VA
2008 RT
2000 LT - Totaled at 99,960 miles


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