Constant fuel smell / cold bike - Kawasaki Forum :: KawasakiWorld.com
 
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post #1 of 7 Old 04-18-2019, 05:34 PM Thread Starter
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Question Constant fuel smell / cold bike -- solved

This is my first Kaw / fuel injected bike, so i'm wondering if our ZX12s by nature emit a noticeable raw fuel odor (mine seems strongest from RH side of the valve body area). Two weeks ago I pulled the valve body and injectors a to fix a steady drip from where the hard line attached to the valve body (old o-ring) & wet injectors where they seated in the fuel rail. Fuel was pooling up in the valley of the engine block. Installed all new o-rings for all injectors and for both lines going to the tank (at the fuel rail) and lubed the o-rings with silicone grease. Perfect, snug fit in every instance.

The bike runs fantastic. The tank is probably 3/4 full. Fast forward two weeks to today, and every evening when I get home from work and open the garage, the raw fuel smell is there. I've looked five or six times for 15m each time all over the bike and around the valve body with a strong flashlight looking for wetness. And also looked under the tank (I had the tank off a couple weeks ago, so not a stranger to the fittings or the fuel pump gasket). I simply cannot find any sign of fuel seeping out of anything or any wet/damp components.

Are the early FI bikes like this? Or do I have a problem? Any known problem areas to recheck? Thanks much! (my carbed Yammys don't smell like fuel at all - and if they did, typically a leaky petcock o-ring/easy fix). Thanks, gents!

2000 ZX12R (A1) with 14k (Candy Persimmon Red)

Last edited by 71Rcode; 05-04-2019 at 11:37 AM.
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post #2 of 7 Old 04-21-2019, 11:52 AM Thread Starter
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Interesting. I filled the fuel tank in the garage (cold bike) two days ago before my ride yesterday (I keep non-ethanol fuel in VP cans in my garage). Yesterday morning, I walk out to a small but thick 2x1' puddle of overflow sludge/gunk that dripped from the vent hose down by the kickstand (LH side of bike). Wasn't expecting that. Has to be from the cruddy ethanol that sat in the tank all those years with the original owner.

I hopped on the bike and it ran flawlessly for a 50m ride just after that.

Back to the fuel odor. I'm wondering if the raw/heavy fuel smell from this A1 is coming from the venting fuel cap. It seems somewhat strong coming out of the cap. Is that normal for the early bikes?

2000 ZX12R (A1) with 14k (Candy Persimmon Red)
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post #3 of 7 Old 04-21-2019, 11:51 PM
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Check the righthand air scoop pipe under the infill panel is connected up properly. I know on the zx-9rs when one is left undone the same happens, but the zx-9rs are carburated, but you never know, worth a check.

For Tech Questions Bike Model letters and Country are more useful than saying the year, for UK owners anyway, as registration year is not always the year of manufacturer model.
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post #4 of 7 Old 04-24-2019, 06:05 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, Yorkie. Good tip right there.

Just found the leak. Went in the dark garage after a 12-hour workday with my old school 4D-cell maglite and sat down on the floor, shining the light everywhere. It was wet right in front of the shock against the black plastic (front part of the fender). Lifted up the tank and see that the SENDING UNIT gasket is leaking. Good... glad it's not the throttle body again! Putting together a Partzilla order now. Might get lucky and find one at a reasonable price at the dealer.

BTW, my fuel level shows only one bar with the tank full. I'll be checking the sending unit when it's out. New the sending units are $125. Crazy. Used $15-20. Guess I'll try my hand at a second-hand unit, eh? Or maybe i'll get lucky and find a wire that needs soldering.

Update: Sending unit is shot. Overly corroded and gunked up from years of ethanol sitting idle. Considering pulling the trigger on a new sending unit. Would be nice to deal with this only 1x.

2000 ZX12R (A1) with 14k (Candy Persimmon Red)

Last edited by 71Rcode; 04-24-2019 at 07:04 PM.
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post #5 of 7 Old 04-24-2019, 11:12 PM
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I've not heard of sender units giving problems so getting a second-hand one I think would be worth a shot.

For Tech Questions Bike Model letters and Country are more useful than saying the year, for UK owners anyway, as registration year is not always the year of manufacturer model.
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post #6 of 7 Old 04-25-2019, 05:17 PM Thread Starter
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I took your advice, man, and have a $13 used sending unit on the way (much better than $125 new and a two-week delivery date). Amazing I couldn't find the sending unit mounting gasket at any Kawasaki dealer in DFW Texas, however. Partzilla order (all small stuff/all in stock) should be here in a week.

2000 ZX12R (A1) with 14k (Candy Persimmon Red)
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post #7 of 7 Old 05-03-2019, 12:57 PM Thread Starter
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Used sender and new gasket in place with a 3/4 full tank. All is working/no leaks. I'll fill her up to the brim tonight and check to see if we have any drips in the early morning. If no, we're gonna take a ride! Simply cannot wait...

(60m later) The dang electrical connector (baby blue/green circular plug) in the center of the sending unit base is leaking, causing a slow drip. DANG. So close. I'm going to try a product called "Seal-All" to see if I can stop the fuel weep.

(6 hours later) Bike is all back together with a full tank. No sign of fuel odor/leaking. I scuffed up the area around the green (plastic/circular) electrical connection plug (in the sending unit) with a red scotchbrite pad, wiped with PPG wax and grease remover and applied two coats of Seal-All with a plumbers brush all around and on top of the plug. I then cut the black wire connector boot from the original/bad sending unit and attached it over the green/plastic electrical connection plug to keep that connection protected, using the Seal-All to hold in place. If this stuff holds up, I'll be quite impressed (I let the Seal-All cure for about three hours) before filling the tank with fuel.

Seal-All Contact Adhesive -- available on Amazon or locally at Ace Hardware.

2000 ZX12R (A1) with 14k (Candy Persimmon Red)

Last edited by 71Rcode; 05-04-2019 at 11:39 AM.
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