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  1. #1
    Active Member Claire's Avatar
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    Default Need to replace Coolant & Flush on 2009 GS & have some questions?

    Hey All

    I've been reading through older threads and can't find an answer so I'm posting here.

    Couple of Questions.

    1. How to flush a radiator? And yes I'm draining via the hose. I have not and will not try to drain by the bolt on radiator.
    It was suggested to use distilled water & run the bike till the fan starts.

    A. Will distilled water clean all the hoses and the radiator? or

    B. is there a flush cleaner I should use

    2. What coolant is suggested for the 2009 GS? Hot weather. I'm in FL

    Originally green was added by a dealer. I drained that green today and had XPS orange - BUT this is why I'm here. I did not flush it and realized that green was probably still in the hoses when I poured the new orange in there today. I only started it twice for about 3 mins each time - fan never went on so I'm guessing it really did not get hot enough. Only went to 2 bars, then decided not to drive it when I realized it probably needed to be cleaned out. It hasn't been drained in about 3 yrs - it's my daily ride with low miles.

    Any advice is appreciated. Thank you!


    Edit to add: Can I use Water Wetter in this model?
    Last edited by Peter Aawen; 02-11-2024 at 06:27 PM. Reason: Expanded title to briefly state the reason for this thread! ;-)
    2009 GS SE5: Stage 2 Elka front shocks, BajaRon sway bar, K&N air filter, kuryakyn foot pegs, TricLED rear and front lights.

  2. #2
    Very Active Member Bfromla's Avatar
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    Please just flush the mixed colors out quickly- regular tap water flush(collect & dispose properly) & once clean can go back with one color & some distilled if needed to top off

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  3. #3
    Ozzie Ozzie Ozzie Peter Aawen's Avatar
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    - I really don't know about the specific coolants that you've used and their compatibility, Claire, but I DO KNOW that mixing coolants, even without running the engine/circulating the coolant at all, might result in a chemical reaction between dissimilar products that can form what is effectively CEMENT inside your cooling system &/or raditaor, or if it doesn't do that, it could create a highly corrosive mix that you really don't want to leave in anything for very long at all! (Do you really hafta ask how I know this little fact?? ) It is largely for this reason that you/everyone/anyone REALLY shouldn't change coolants without a thorough cooling system flush!

    So unless you KNOW that the green dealer supplied coolant and your replacement Orange coolant truly ARE compatible, then I'd suggest that you drain everything out of your cooling system RIGHT NOW or sooner, and immediately thoroughly flush the radiator and block with a LOT of fresh, running water! Your garden hose should be fine to do that, and it might even be an idea to run the engine for a minute with the hose supplying water to the block! It'll safely run gently for a minute or so without any coolant, and you really want to try and get any mixed coolant out of the system completely, so make sure you flush both the block and the radiator with copious amounts of water!!

    And sadly, if those two coolants aren't UNDENIABLY COMPATIBLE, you really have no choice but to discard whatever you drain out of the system now, even tho it might be brand new; and dispose of it (properly tho, not just down the drain/stormwater! ) because by adding the new Orange to any unflushed green that was left in the system, you've effectively mixed them inside the block/radiator anyway, and ANY incompatible mix left in there for too long could be damaging or even destroying things in there in a very expensive way!! Of course, none of this is an issue IF you can confirm that they are compatible.... You might be able to guess that they are, but do you really know what the dealer put in there last time??

    Just Sayin' Good Luck!
    Last edited by Peter Aawen; 02-11-2024 at 06:56 PM.
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  4. #4
    Active Member Claire's Avatar
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    Thank you for the feedback. Its 730pm here and I can't do it now. I will get out there and get rid of it tmwr.

    Can I leave it sit with no coolant till I get some? in a few days

    How do I flush the block?

    I can put the hose in the radiator I know that.
    Should I close up the radiator drain hose & run the engine for a minute?

    Distilled water vs hose water?






    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Aawen View Post
    - I really don't know about the specific coolants that you've used and their compatibility, Claire, but I DO KNOW that mixing coolants, even without running the engine/circulating the coolant at all, might result in a chemical reaction between dissimilar products that can form what is effectively CEMENT inside your cooling system &/or raditaor, or if it doesn't do that, it could create a highly corrosive mix that you really don't want to leave in anything for very long at all! (Do you really hafta ask how I know this little fact?? ) It is largely for this reason that you/everyone/anyone REALLY shouldn't change coolants without a thorough cooling system flush!

    So unless you KNOW that the green dealer supplied coolant and your replacement Orange coolant truly ARE compatible, then I'd suggest that you drain everything out of your cooling system RIGHT NOW or sooner, and immediately thoroughly flush the radiator and block with a LOT of fresh, running water! Your garden hose should be fine to do that, and it might even be an idea to run the engine for a minute with the hose supplying water to the block! It'll safely run gently for a minute or so without any coolant, and you really want to try and get any mixed coolant out of the system completely, so make sure you flush both the block and the radiator with copious amounts of water!!

    And sadly, if those two coolants aren't UNDENIABLY COMPATIBLE, you really have no choice but to discard whatever you drain out of the system now, even tho it might be brand new; and dispose of it (properly tho, not just down the drain/stormwater! ) because by adding the new Orange to any unflushed green that was left in the system, you've effectively mixed them inside the block/radiator anyway, and ANY incompatible mix left in there for too long could be damaging or even destroying things in there in a very expensive way!! Of course, none of this is an issue IF you can confirm that they are compatible.... You might be able to guess that they are, but do you really know what the dealer put in there last time??

    Just Sayin' Good Luck!
    2009 GS SE5: Stage 2 Elka front shocks, BajaRon sway bar, K&N air filter, kuryakyn foot pegs, TricLED rear and front lights.

  5. #5
    Active Member Claire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bfromla View Post
    Please just flush the mixed colors out quickly- regular tap water flush(collect & dispose properly) & once clean can go back with one color & some distilled if needed to top off
    Thank you!
    2009 GS SE5: Stage 2 Elka front shocks, BajaRon sway bar, K&N air filter, kuryakyn foot pegs, TricLED rear and front lights.

  6. #6
    Ozzie Ozzie Ozzie Peter Aawen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Claire View Post
    Thank you for the feedback. Its 730pm here and I can't do it now. I will get out there and get rid of it tmwr.

    Can I leave it sit with no coolant till I get some? in a few days

    How do I flush the block?

    I can put the hose in the radiator I know that.
    Should I close up the radiator drain hose & run the engine for a minute?

    Distilled water vs hose water?

    If you don't know that it's compatible and no-one else here can shed any light on that likelihood, you really should at least drain it out NOW, even if it's midnight &/or close to freezing!!

    Admittedly, it's a 'Worst Case' scenario, but how lucky do you feel?? If the mix that's in there now really is a combination of incompatible coolants, leaving it in there overnight could mean that you end up needing a new radiator AND a new engine!!

    This is because if you let incompatible coolants mix in the radiator core &/or the small cooling channels and galleries in the block where they can harden into something very much like concrete, there's effectively no 'non-destructive' way of getting it out of all the nooks and crannies and small cooling channels and your engine basically becomes a throw away job!! And even if the mix only turns into a highly corrosive substance, leaving it in there for even as little as just a few minutes to let it chew away at all the dissimilar metals and gaskets etc REALLY isn't all that good for your engine, radiator, cooling system, or any of those critical gaskets etc!!

    To flush the block, just put the running garden hose into the other side of the radiator hose you took off - one way clearly goes into the radiator, the other goes into the engine/block, so after you've flushed the radiator, just stick the running hose into the other side... And it doesn't hurt to gently run the engine for a minute or so while the hose is running water in there; that helps pump any remaining coolant out of the water pump & thermostat, cooling galleries etc, so it's a better flush than just pumping water in there, and if you only do it for a minute or so, you won't be over-heating or damaging anything.

    As for using distilled water or just tap water, if you are simply flushing everything before re-filling with proper coolant, sure, you can do that, but why waste any extra time/effort/money on distilled water when all you really want/need is a relatively benign liquid to flush out any remaining coolant. So unless you live in an area where your tap water is extremely 'hard' or full of high levels of dissolved metals, chemicals, calcium, etc, there's absolutely no benefit in using anything else....
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  7. #7
    Active Member Claire's Avatar
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    A quick update: all good! I dropped the new coolant. Flushed with hose water - ran for 2 mins. no more than that. Added distilled water and ran for 2 mins. going to add coolant.

    Peter, you're signature says worry less mate! I'm curious if you experienced coolant turning to gel in an engine?
    2009 GS SE5: Stage 2 Elka front shocks, BajaRon sway bar, K&N air filter, kuryakyn foot pegs, TricLED rear and front lights.

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    Ozzie Ozzie Ozzie Peter Aawen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Claire View Post
    A quick update: all good! I dropped the new coolant. Flushed with hose water - ran for 2 mins. no more than that. Added distilled water and ran for 2 mins. going to add coolant.

    Peter, you're signature says worry less mate! I'm curious if you experienced coolant turning to gel in an engine?
    Yes, I've been able to help a few owners who've had their vehicle's 'incompatible coolant mix' turn to gel - fixing that is sometimes possible, but it's always a pain; AND I couldn't really help a couple where that mix had already turned into unmovable concrete!!

    And Yes, I do try to practice & tell others to Ride More, Worry Less - after all, that's a lot of what riding is all about for many of us! But I really DON'T encourage people to play Russian Roulette at all - and mixing potentially incompatible coolant types is pretty much doing just that... Especially if you leave it in there for too long! You might ask, "How long is too long?" but that's even harder to answer than "How long is a piece of string?"
    Last edited by Peter Aawen; 02-12-2024 at 06:22 PM.
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  9. #9
    Very Active Member BLUEKNIGHT911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Aawen View Post
    Yes, I've been able to help a few owners who've had their vehicle's 'incompatible coolant mix' turn to gel - fixing that is sometimes possible, but it's always a pain; AND I couldn't really help a couple where that mix had already turned into unmovable concrete!!

    And Yes, I do try to practice & tell others to Ride More, Worry Less - after all, that's a lot of what riding is all about for many of us! But I really DON'T encourage people to play Russian Roulette at all - and mixing potentially incompatible coolant types is pretty much doing just that... Especially if you leave it in there for too long! You might ask, "How long is too long?" but that's even harder to answer than "How long is a piece of string?"
    ... Just let me add ..... you can get an anti-freeze / coolant tester , however BRP makes it very difficult to get a sample .... also note just because it won't freeze / over-heat doesn't tell you how effect it is to prevent corrosion .... Mike

  10. #10
    Very Active Member BLUEKNIGHT911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Claire View Post
    A quick update: all good! I dropped the new coolant. Flushed with hose water - ran for 2 mins. no more than that. Added distilled water and ran for 2 mins. going to add coolant.

    Peter, you're signature says worry less mate! I'm curious if you experienced coolant turning to gel in an engine?
    I could be wrong .... But I believe you need to use HOT water to flush - WHY .... Cold water will not allow the thermostat ( which controls coolant flow ) through the engine ..... Bert - Peter is this correct .... Mike ..... Correction : Although this will work - you need to have a LARGE source of Boiling water ......
    Last edited by BLUEKNIGHT911; 02-13-2024 at 11:09 AM.

  11. #11
    Ozzie Ozzie Ozzie Peter Aawen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLUEKNIGHT911 View Post
    I could be wrong .... But I believe you need to use HOT water to flush - WHY .... Cold water will not allow the thermostat ( which controls coolant flow ) through the engine ..... Bert - Peter is this correct .... Mike
    AFAIK, using Hot water to flush your cooling system won't hurt, but if you use the 'garden hose in the radiator first & then swap it to run into the engine' method, or some similar 'copious quantities of running water' method, it's not strictly necessary that the thermostat opens, but if you can flow that much hot water for long enough, then it certainly won't hurt!

    But as mentioned, it's not strictly necessary to open the thermostat; firstly, because the thermostat won't completely block off all flow of coolant &/or flushing water around the system anyway - most cooling systems &/or the thermostats themselves even have a small bypass built in to allow for some flow around the system even with a fully closed thermostat (most engine coolant pumps prefer if not actually need to move some coolant while they're running, and some few can even be damaged if they can't!); and secondly, by running the water into the system thru the radiator, and then by running it 'the other way' or vice versa, you're effectively stirring up any old coolant that remains in the system and either completely flushing it out thru the quantity and flow rate of the flush, or the remaining coolant is being so diluted by the sheer volume/quantity of flushing water that it's no longer an issue...
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