ABS bleeding and failures

Standby diver

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Right I assume heat and other contamination were to blame for color change. But I have often heard that brake fluid changes color when there is water in it. So one may assume if brake fluid is clear it is safe to use. But i ended up with a mixture of 25% water with the fluid being clear. This means that water ALONE will not change the color of brake fluid. But we do know that small percentage of water will seriously effect the boiling point.

Why is this important, well it may not be at all. But it may also be an eye opener as to why you should only use brake fluid from a sealed container. Sure you opened it and closed it right away and stored it, but the fluid remaining clear does not indicate there is no water in it.

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RCinNC

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Re: ABS unit failure

EricV said:
As KevHunts has stated, there actually is a procedure for cycling the ABS unit. Yamaha uses a test lead, anyone can do it with a short piece of wire or paperclip to ground the test wires and follow the outlined procedure in the FSM.

Or, just take a short ride and engage the ABS system a few times. Easy enough to do in a gravel parking lot at low speeds even. They just as Kev said, do another flush/bleed and you've got fresh fluid in the entire system.

Part of the reason ABS valve blocks fail, due to that gunk and old fluid sitting in the valve, is because most people never engage the ABS. You should be engaging the ABS a few times a year, at minimum, just to cycle the fluid.
This is the way I've been bleeding my brakes and ABS system after I read about it on another forum, and it seems to be the easiest and fastest way to push fresh brake fluid into the ABS unit and flush out the old stuff. I bled the system first with a Mighty Vac, then cycled the ABS a couple times by braking hard enough in my gravel driveway to activate the ABS, then bled the system one more time. It was referred to as the "Hillbilly Flush", which I thought was funny.
 

scott123007

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A few points to ponder about brakes and brake fluid.

It more harmful to a braking system to lie dormant (corrosion and fluid crystalizing) than if it is used on a regular basis..

Water intrusion lowers the boiling point of the fluid, but for that to affect your braking adversely, you will have to be doing a track day on your bike, and riding it hard to boot.

If you want to cycle your ABS pump and don't feel comfortable activating the front brakes on gravel or grass, just apply the rear brake on the street. That "skidding" you think you are feeling is actually your ABS pump cycling.

The brake fluid in your brake system is "captive". By that I mean it is not circulatory, in that it has no return system like in a fuel injection system. It moves around a little bit from usage and blends with itself, but for the most part what is in your calipers stays in your calipers, what is in your reservoirs, stays in your reservoirs, etc. There is some movement of the fluid from the heat of usage, but it is not by any means circulatory. Activating your ABS on a regular basis is good for your pump and good for the fluid, but it is not necessarily going to flush it out and introduce new fluid.
 

Sierra1

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Well, I know that my ST1300PA work bike ABS got plenty of exercise. And although bled on a regular basis, it was just an ordinary brake bleed per the manual. Now that I have my retirement Tenere, I guess I will have to maintain my "ABS exercise" regimen. Once I become acclimated to the Tenere, and it gets broken in, I'm sure that between our poor roads and drivers, my ABS will be well exercised.
 

Sierra1

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I "thought" I wanted a Beemer....until I rode a RT1150P past the warranty....and went through two drive shafts/clutches. I "knew" I wanted a Tenere the very first time I saw it. (always been a Yamaha man). But I couldn't justify buying a bike that I wouldn't ride. (After riding 12hrs a day for work, the last thing I wanted was more saddle time) Now that have "unencumbered" time, and two adult sons that ride Yamahas, there was no holding me back. ::022::
 

RCinNC

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I would love to own a BMW, even taking into account their less than stellar reputation they've acquired over the past few years (and let's be honest, that reputation has not been the norm throughout BMW's history). Owning a BMW would be a lot like having an extremely hot, extremely crazy girlfriend; yes, it might be problems galore and cause you no end of grief, but at least for a while, you just won't care.
 

Sierra1

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RCinNC said:
I would love to own a BMW, even taking into account their less than stellar reputation they've acquired over the past few years (and let's be honest, that reputation has not been the norm throughout BMW's history). Owning a BMW would be a lot like having an extremely hot, extremely crazy girlfriend; yes, it might be problems galore and cause you no end of grief, but at least for a while, you just won't care.



While the BMW was under warranty, it was FANTASTIC!! Except for the oil consumption; wasn't leaking or burning. It was just gone; a quart every 1-2k miles. By trade-in at 60k miles consumption was down to 1/2 a quart per 2-3k miles. Still loved it; best brakes ever. But after the warranty mileage was up (39k) the hot chick turned into quite the pig. Which came as a HUGE surprise considering their reputation, and how well the bike started out. A person needs to ride whatever makes them happy....me, although I have strayed, I'm sticking with Yamaha.
 

Sierra1

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Spoke with a Yamaha Factory tech about the ABS pump bleeding. The tech advised that bleeding ANY bike with ABS will take more time and more fluid than the ol' days because of the additional length of the lines and the fluid in the pumps. BUT, the only time that you have to mess with the ABS pumps is if air was introduced into the system. (new lines, master cylinder, or a crash) The air will likely end up stuck in the pumps. If there is no air in the lines, just bleed as normal. This information also matches what a auto mechanic told me years ago about bleeding ABS systems.
 

holligl

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I did mine back in November. It is really easy to use the test plug under the seat to cycle the ABS unit and do it all in one sitting. Cycled it twice for good measure. All you really need is a paperclip. With the bike @ 2+ years, mostly pavement riding, ~22Kmi, I found the clutch fluid to be the worst, front not too bad, and the rear still looked new.
 

RED CAT

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Sierra1 said:
Spoke with a Yamaha Factory tech about the ABS pump bleeding. The tech advised that bleeding ANY bike with ABS will take more time and more fluid than the ol' days because of the additional length of the lines and the fluid in the pumps. BUT, the only time that you have to mess with the ABS pumps is if air was introduced into the system. (new lines, master cylinder, or a crash) The air will likely end up stuck in the pumps. If there is no air in the lines, just bleed as normal. This information also matches what a auto mechanic told me years ago about bleeding ABS systems.
Thats all I did to mine today along with the clutch. Easy peasey.
 

holligl

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blitz11 said:
Which color wires do you jump with the paperclip?
Process:
Summarized:
Up on Center stand.
Make sure the sidestand kill switch works.
Leave it in gear.
Make sure your battery is well charged.
Install the test adapter (Jump top two wires, Light Blue and Black) on the ABS test plug under the seat.
Confirm the side stand is down.
Ignition key ON (I waited for fuel pump to stop)
Press and hold the Starter Button for at least 4 seconds (doesn't start since it is in gear and sidestand is down)
Release the starter button.
After releasing the starter button, pull the front brake lever and press the rear brake pedal simultaneously and continue to hold both.
The front lever should pulsate for a few seconds, then the rear pedal will pulsate a few seconds, and then the front will pulsate again.
Release the brakes, ignition off, put it in neutral, remove the test adapter, etc....
 

Mark R.

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RCinNC said:
I would love to own a BMW, even taking into account their less than stellar reputation they've acquired over the past few years (and let's be honest, that reputation has not been the norm throughout BMW's history). Owning a BMW would be a lot like having an extremely hot, extremely crazy girlfriend; yes, it might be problems galore and cause you no end of grief, but at least for a while, you just won't care.
Your post reminded me of a great Youtube video on the Hot / Crazy girl matrix. Worth a look: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hKWmFWRVLlU
 

WJBertrand

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holligl said:
Process:
Summarized:
Up on Center stand.
Make sure the sidestand kill switch works.
Leave it in gear.
Make sure your battery is well charged.
Install the test adapter (Jump top two wires, Light Blue and Black) on the ABS test plug under the seat.
Confirm the side stand is down.
Ignition key ON (I waited for fuel pump to stop)
Press and hold the Starter Button for at least 4 seconds (doesn't start since it is in gear and sidestand is down)
Release the starter button.
After releasing the starter button, pull the front brake lever and press the rear brake pedal simultaneously and continue to hold both.
The front lever should pulsate for a few seconds, then the rear pedal will pulsate a few seconds, and then the front will pulsate again.
Release the brakes, ignition off, put it in neutral, remove the test adapter, etc....
So trying to decide if bleeding the brakes after this should be done. I think obviously bleeding them first makes sense in order to replace what's in there with fresher fluid.
 

Checkswrecks

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Black crud tends to build in the ABS pump and module, which you will be moving into the rest of the system. Bleeding afterward is a good idea and can't hurt.
 

holligl

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WJBertrand said:
So trying to decide if bleeding the brakes after this should be done. I think obviously bleeding them first makes sense in order to replace what's in there with fresher fluid.
Yes you should bleed first, cycle the ABS, then re-bleed. The advantage of using the test lead to cycle the pump is you don't have to leave the garage to apply ABS on the road, and then re-bleed. I used less than a full bottle for the whole bleed, the rest is wasted since it should not be used after the bottle has been opened for any period of time.
 

2daMax

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holligl said:
Yes you should bleed first, cycle the ABS, then re-bleed. The advantage of using the test lead to cycle the pump is you don't have to leave the garage to apply ABS on the road, and then re-bleed. I used less than a full bottle for the whole bleed, the rest is wasted since it should not be used after the bottle has been opened for any period of time.
I totally agree with this. Cycling the abs pump is necessary after bleeding n re bleed to get a clean system.

My S10 buddy came over complaining his rear brake is not working. Prior to this he has visited a few mechanics. They have opened up the master cylinder, n swap with a known good unit and yet the brake pedal when depressed has no resistance.
I was baffled as it doesn't feel spongy but felt as if the internal seal has broken. So I bleed the rear lines a couple of times. No change. Then he told me one of the mechanic open up the lines at the abs pump. Air must have gotten in n could not be simply evacuated by normal bleeding.

Cycled the abs pump by jumpering the under seat connector. Then bleed out a couple of times. Noted air bubbles were coming out. Finally lock up the nipple valve. Brake pedal now is back to normal.
 

AndrewA

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Guys - I've got a 2014ES and am unclear on exactly which wires I need to jump under the seat. Would really appreciate it if someone could post a pic. I've looked everywhere and can't find anything clear on it.

There are 2 connectors in the middle of the seat area... One of them has 3 bright blue/black wires - if it's this plug, which 2 are the ones that get jumped?

Thanks for any help you can provide!

Andrew
 
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