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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi everyone,

I own a 2011 Ninja 650R ABS and last week I got a weird problem: the rear ABS brake does not works at all. When I apply strong brake on the rear the wheel just lock it up, no ABS engaging at all. The front wheel ABS is working just fine. There is no ABS light problem code. The ABS light turn on when I start the bike and goes off after I ride above 5 or 8 km/h.

In short: front abs works just fine. Abs light is working as the owner manual describe. No weird sound. Rear brake works ok, but no ABS engaging, which causes the rear wheel to lock up in emergency stop.

Does anyone have any idea what's going on? I'm really concerned about my rear ABS brake.
 

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Hi everyone,

I own a 2011 Ninja 650R ABS and last week I got a weird problem: the rear ABS brake does not works at all. When I apply strong brake on the rear the wheel just lock it up, no ABS engaging at all. The front wheel ABS is working just fine. There is no ABS light problem code. The ABS light turn on when I start the bike and goes off after I ride above 5 or 8 km/h.

In short: front abs works just fine. Abs light is working as the owner manual describe. No weird sound. Rear brake works ok, but no ABS engaging, which causes the rear wheel to lock up in emergency stop.

Has any one an idea of what is happening? I'm really concerned about my rear ABS brake.
I'd check if anything gummed up the ABS sensor ring, technically the bike should give a code for implausible readings but who knows, since the ABS pump is a central unit, responsible for both the rear and front i don't think that's not working. Still worth a look, but again should give codes...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'd check if anything gummed up the ABS sensor ring, technically the bike should give a code for implausible readings but who knows, since the ABS pump is a central unit, responsible for both the rear and front i don't think that's not working. Still worth a look, but again should give codes...
Thanks for you repply. This weekend I'll check the rear sensor, brake fluid lines and change the brake fluid. I'll post the results soon.
 

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Thanks for you repply. This weekend I'll check the rear sensor, brake fluid lines and change the brake fluid. I'll post the results soon.
Actually completely forgot, air in the lines can also affect it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Quick update: I changed brake pads and brake fluid. There were no air bubbles inside brake lines. The issue is still happening, unfortunately.
 

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Quick update: I changed brake pads and brake fluid. There were no air bubbles inside brake lines. The issue is still happening, unfortunately.
Honestly I'm not all that familiar with the ABS on these bikes. Short of being able to test the pump's operation I can't imagine a reasonable way diagnose the issue. Only other things I can think of is a corroded plug or torn cable and the self diagnosis system just doesn't display a fault for whatever reason. I'd try to pull codes from the bike as there may be some pointers there, might be that it indeed recognises the fault but it doesn't deem it "serious" enough to show a light for it. Just bouncing ideas at this point...
 

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Im probably the same as Antares on this. Vague on detailed knowledge but understand how it might work.
The shop manual should have test procedures..https://www.manualslib.com/manual/829375/Kawasaki-Ninja-650.html?page=412#manual

I just scanned and it seems it should work on the back wheel as it mentions that the rider should feel pulsation through the pedal.
I’d say it might not be releasing when it locks if your rear caliper might be sticking … do you fee the pulse through the pedal ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
In short: I don't fell the pulse.
But, I did some tests over asphalt and gravel with the same result: if I just step hard in brake pedal the rear wheel locks. If I apply soft brake and increase gradually, the rear wheel will lock when the pressure is high enough. In both situation, no pulsation at all. But performing those tests I discovered something intriguing at least: if I step hard on brake, let the wheel lock, then very quickly release the brake and re-apply, I feel the brake pedal pulsing! that's a new symptom.

While performing those tests, the activation of the front wheel ABS does not change the behavior of the rear wheel: The front wheel ABS will always work as expected while rear wheel ABS won't work as expected in all the tests.

What we know until now:
1. ABS light works as expected indicating no error.
2. Front wheel ABS works as expected preventing wheel locking during hard brakes.
3. Rear wheel ABS does not work as expected.
4. I changed brake pads and brake fluids. No air inside brake lines.
5. Both tires are same brand and within the specs of the bike: Pirelli Diablo 160/60 rear, 120/70 front.
6. All fuses are ok.
7. Battery is ok.
8. Brake lines are ok.

All the symptoms points to a solenoid valve failing inside the ABS module. There are two solenoid valves per wheel and it seems like one or both are failing for some reason. That's just a guess, I'm no mechanic, I'm just a regular user.
 

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In short: I don't fell the pulse.
But, I did some tests over asphalt and gravel with the same result: if I just step hard in brake pedal the rear wheel locks. If I apply soft brake and increase gradually, the rear wheel will lock when the pressure is high enough. In both situation, no pulsation at all. But performing those tests I discovered something intriguing at least: if I step hard on brake, let the wheel lock, then very quickly release the brake and re-apply, I feel the brake pedal pulsing! that's a new symptom.

While performing those tests, the activation of the front wheel ABS does not change the behavior of the rear wheel: The front wheel ABS will always work as expected while rear wheel ABS won't work as expected in all the tests.

What we know until now:
1. ABS light works as expected indicating no error.
2. Front wheel ABS works as expected preventing wheel locking during hard brakes.
3. Rear wheel ABS does not work as expected.
4. I changed brake pads and brake fluids. No air inside brake lines.
5. Both tires are same brand and within the specs of the bike: Pirelli Diablo 160/60 rear, 120/70 front.
6. All fuses are ok.
7. Battery is ok.
8. Brake lines are ok.

All the symptoms points to a solenoid valve failing inside the ABS module. There are two solenoid valves per wheel and it seems like one or both are failing for some reason. That's just a guess, I'm no mechanic, I'm just a regular user.

Hi! Any update on this? My 2011 650 seems to have a jammed abs valve according to my mechanic, "for not enough brake fluid maintenance"... the part costs around 1.000€ or trying to fix it around 400€, but it is the first time I hear of these problem, my mechanic says it is quite common...
 

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Hi! Any update on this? My 2011 650 seems to have a jammed abs valve according to my mechanic, "for not enough brake fluid maintenance"... the part costs around 1.000€ or trying to fix it around 400€, but it is the first time I hear of these problem, my mechanic says it is quite common...
Well that's utter BS cos you can get a used low mile ABS pump unit for like €50 or less and it's just a matter of out with the old, in with the new and bleeding the system, which can be tricky, a kawi main dealer will do it for you under another €50 for sure, usually it's a free procedure on top of services too. ABS can get blocked as it's sensitive to clean fluid and it is common IF you truly never changed your brake fluid or maintained your brakes, but it's definitely not a €400 to €1000 job, not on a brand new bike with lean sensitive hyper clever ABS let alone a 10 year old bike with a dead simple abs.
 

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Hi Antares, thx for the reply, I guess I'll start the hunt for an old unit and "force" the mechanic to use it, anyway, still waiting for the final cost... but I too think that those estimations are a bit steep...
 

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I guess I'll start the hunt for an old unit and "force" the mechanic to use it, anyway, still waiting for the final cost... but I too think that those estimations are a bit steep...
It's a free market and there are many mechanics around, you don't have to push anyone, just make an honest deal - quid pro quo ;)
 
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