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Kawasaki ZZR 1100 hydraulic lock!

Interesting issue with the 1100. I parked it up with a full tank of fuel and left it for a few days.I knew that the seals on the fuel tap had failed but I decided to wait to get new seals until I ordered some other service items. The seals went on the fuel tap a few years ago and it was fine until I got round to replacing them after a couple of months. So I went to start the bike and the starter turned over but the bike made a very loud "clacking sound".

Mmm, thats not good me thinks. I try again and the starter will not turn at all. Bloody hell I think, must be a major issue with the starter. I chat to the bikes mechanic and he calls round. I described the symptoms and he knew right away. We took out the plugs and hit the starter. Petrol shot out of all the spark plug holes,not a small amount either.. After that stopped he continued to crank the engine over and then the fuel started spaying out of the crank case breather. Again,not as mall amount.

It appears that the full tank and faulty seals in the fuel tap meant that the fuel flowed down to the fuel pump where it should have been stopped by the seals in the pump but they also seemed to have failed( 5 year old fuel pump) allowing the fuel to move up to the carbs and from there into the cylinders. They fuel then found it way into the crank case and filled that up. When I attempted to start the bike the "Clacking" was the pistons not being able to compress the fuel in the cylinder. It stopped the starter completely because it formed a lock.

Well, thats a new one for me. New fuel pump, new fuel tap all on order. ( I had just changed the bloody oil and filter as well) I will post some picture of the fix when all the parts have arrived.

Edit: The mechanic said he had come across a couple of examples of this and he believed it was because of the E10 fuel degrading the rubber seals. Newer bikes have seals made of a different compound that better copes with E10 fuel.

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