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2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

  1. #1

    2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning


    My (new to me) has a high idle (around 4k). I'll be checking and adjusting the valves first, since who knows when that was last done, but after that I'll be looking at the carbs. I remember seeing an ad on craigslist for ultrasonic carb cleaning (I think for $40?), but I cant find it anymore. Anyone do this? Any recommendations on whether thats even a good idea, or should I just disassemble and spray it down with an aerosol/check and clean the jets?

    Thanks! I've owned this bike for less than a month and it already looks like I've got plenty to work on this winter haha

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  2. #2
    Soul Rider Paul_E_D's Avatar
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    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    4k idle? I'd be looking for air leaks in the carb boot.

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  3. #3

    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Thanks - people check for leaks there by spraying starting fluid in that area right?

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  4. #4
    Lifer Kurlon's Avatar
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    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    There are carb sync ports that should be capped on the intake boots, if those cracked/went missing that'd raise the idle. There are also o-rings under the carb caps that like to vanish during carb maint...

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  5. #5

    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurlon View Post
    There are carb sync ports that should be capped on the intake boots, if those cracked/went missing that'd raise the idle. There are also o-rings under the carb caps that like to vanish during carb maint...
    Thanks, I'll check that too. BTW last night I backed out the idle screw and the idle came down - but the engine sputtered and died. Possibly I didn't let the engine warm up enough before messing with the idle setting.

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  6. #6
    suburban ghetto living... black's Avatar
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    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    head to harbor frieght and buy an ultrasonic cleaner for 50$? with coupon. you'll use it again and again. I use 50/50 simple green and water.

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    hmmmm......

  7. #7
    Lifer Kurlon's Avatar
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    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Someone may have jacked the idle stop to get around plugged idle circuits and intake air leaks?

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  8. #8

    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurlon View Post
    Someone may have jacked the idle stop to get around plugged idle circuits and intake air leaks?
    Seems likely, but at this point I really know nothing. I let it warm up before messing with the idle stop, but apparently to really warm up you need to ride for 15 minutes, not just let it sit for a few.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurlon View Post
    Someone may have jacked the idle stop to get around plugged idle circuits and intake air leaks?
    Seems likely, but at this point I really know nothing. I let it warm up before messing with the idle stop, but apparently to really warm up you need to ride for 15 minutes, not just let it sit for a few.

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  9. #9
    Super Moderator OreoGaborio's Avatar
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    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Steppum 1: Make sure it's actually firing up and running on both cylinders even when cold. Fire it up from cold, keep RPM's lowish if possible, check headers to see if both begin to warm up evenly. If not, you know you've got an issue with one side vs the other.

    Steppum B: Check idle screw, missing carb sync ports and vacuum leaks... as you said, starter fluid (or even wd40) can be misted over the carbs to see if the rippums change.

    That'll give you a quick 5 minute diagnosis to see what direction you need to start going in.

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    Last edited by OreoGaborio; 10-23-18 at 05:11 PM.
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  10. #10

    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by OreoGaborio View Post
    Steppum 1: Make sure it's actually firing up and running on both cylinders even when cold. Fire it up from cold, keep RPM's lowish if possible, check headers to see if both begin to warm up evenly. If not, you know you've got an issue with one side vs the other.

    Steppum B: Check idle screw, missing carb sync ports and vacuum leaks... as you said, starter fluid (or even wd40) can be misted over the carbs to see if the rippums change.

    That'll give you a quick 5 minute diagnosis to see what direction you need to start going in.
    Thanks, I'll do this


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  11. #11

    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning



    These look pretty bad. I couldn't tell if there are cracks for sure, but the rubber is flaking away from the steel and when I sprayed starter fluid in the area, after a slight delay rpm went from around 2k up to 5k with no throttle.


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  12. #12
    Rust never sleeps. whynot's Avatar
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    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    ^^ There you have it.

    +1 on the HF ultrasonic cleaner. I just use some diluted Simple Green for the bath, then dry and blast some carb cleaner or brake cleaner through the passages. No doubt you will find some other grievous situations inside the carbs when you get them off and apart.

    I had a similar experience with a KZ550 a few years back. Once sorted, it was a great running bike.

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    Last edited by whynot; 10-24-18 at 08:52 AM.
    Don't believe everything you think.

  13. #13

    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Looking at pictures online, the hf cleaner looks pretty small. Do the carbs need split to fit?

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  14. #14
    Rust never sleeps. whynot's Avatar
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    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by joshk1025 View Post
    Looking at pictures online, the hf cleaner looks pretty small. Do the carbs need split to fit?

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    You'd have to remove the carbs from whatever rack they mount on and strip them completely, float bowls removed, all the little bits removed ... . Probably can fit two carbs in at a time.

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    Don't believe everything you think.

  15. #15
    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by joshk1025 View Post
    Looking at pictures online, the hf cleaner looks pretty small. Do the carbs need split to fit?

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    You should be able to fit them without taking them off the rack. Won't be able to fit the cover on but should do the trick. I've done similar before.

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  16. #16
    Lifer Kurlon's Avatar
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    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Where are you located? I've got a tank that can handle full inline four racks.

    On what to put in the tank, I prefer distilled water and just a touch of that fru-fru, fancy no dyes no perfumes dish detergent to break surface tension. It takes longer to clean, but who cares? Put rack in, push button, walk away. I come back every half an hour to inspect, and push the button again if required. Heat helps, if your cleaner doesn't have a heat function don't worry, again it'll just take longer and will eventually heat up on it's own. Using just water means your cleaner has no chance of etching aluminum, reacting poorly to plastics, swelling any o-rings, etc. You don't have to be as critical about tearing the rack down to remove stuff sensitive to harsh chemicals, if you leave the rack in for a day it's not going to discolor, it's just easier.

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  17. #17

    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurlon View Post
    Where are you located? I've got a tank that can handle full inline four racks.

    On what to put in the tank, I prefer distilled water and just a touch of that fru-fru, fancy no dyes no perfumes dish detergent to break surface tension. It takes longer to clean, but who cares? Put rack in, push button, walk away. I come back every half an hour to inspect, and push the button again if required. Heat helps, if your cleaner doesn't have a heat function don't worry, again it'll just take longer and will eventually heat up on it's own. Using just water means your cleaner has no chance of etching aluminum, reacting poorly to plastics, swelling any o-rings, etc. You don't have to be as critical about tearing the rack down to remove stuff sensitive to harsh chemicals, if you leave the rack in for a day it's not going to discolor, it's just easier.
    I'm on the south shore of MA, about 2 hours south of you. At an earlier point in my life I would be asking when you have time free and heading up to see you, but with two young kids I'm stuck pretty locally for a few more years... really appreciate the offer though!

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  18. #18
    Lifer loudbeard's Avatar
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    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    If East Providence is convenient to you I have an ultrasonic cleaner in my shop, you can drop them off with me and I'll run them through.

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    I went to MMI I know what Im doing here chief

  19. #19

    Re: 2001 GS500 high idle/carb cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by loudbeard View Post
    If East Providence is convenient to you I have an ultrasonic cleaner in my shop, you can drop them off with me and I'll run them through.
    Really appreciate the offer.

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