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Chapter 5  Regular maintenance in addition to the service interval chart

5.1  Check oil level

There is no service interval given in the Owner’s Manual. For the time being, I assume an interval of 2000 km; may later be increased. The oil prescribed in the Owner’s Manual is 20W-50 Castrol.

Done 2013-May-19 at 42 km, next time at 2042 km. Was near maximum.

Done 2013-Jul-21 at 1048 km, next time at 3048 km. After short test ride after oil change, it was still halfway between middle and full, like before the test ride.

Done 2013-Oct-01 at 3149 km, next time at 7149 km. Was at full mark, color still bright amber. Increased interval to 4000 km.

Done 2015-Mar-28 at 3694 km, next time at 7694 km. Wendy was just back from the Netherlands. After the first longer ride, I noticed that oil was lost at the back of the intake manifold (cf. 6.4), however, although significant on the garage floor, it is negligible concerning the engine oil level. When I checked it, it was at full mark, color still bright amber.

Done 2015-Jul-16 at 5722 km, next time at 7722 km. I noticed that the oil pressure went occasionally down, so I checked and it was indeed much too low. I added 2 liters (20W-50, albeit not Castrol, of which I had no more at hand, but some gas station brand), then it was half way between min and max. This is a higher than expected oil consumption. May be it is due to the test rides with still leaking intake manifold. For the time being, I reduce the checking interval to 2000 km.

Done 2016-Jan-24 at 7723 km, next time at 8723 km. Again, I noticed that the oil pressure went occasionally down, so instantly I pulled over to a gas station and added 2 liters of Repsol 20W-50. I reduce the checking interval to 1000 km.

Done 2016-Feb-02 at 7770 km, next time at 8770 km. As the level was still at the lower end, I added another liter which brought it close to maximum. The oil consumption is somewhat worrying. I will soon change the unknow oil from the Netherland Dealer in favour of Castrol Classic 20W-50 and see how it goes then.

Done 2016-Feb-07 at 7848 km, next time at 8848 km. At full mark after oil change.

Done 2016-Mar-24 at 8065 km, next time at 8565 km. Early check after just about 200 km because of surprisingly high oil consumption. Level was at 3/4 full. Gross extrapolation gives a little bit more than one liter per 1000 km. I reduce the checking intervall to 500 km.

Done 2016-May-04 at 8565 km, next time at 9065 km. Was halfway between min and max. I wanted to top it off but I put too much (about 1.5 l) because it takes some time for the oil to reach the pan. The easiest and fastest way to get the oil in is to remove the breather and its grommit.

Done 2016-Jun-19 at 9096 km, next time at 9596 km. Was almost full, considering the darker side of the drop stick. The other side was only very light coated with oil, and I had previously taken this as the one that counts, probably adding too much oil as a consequence. Giving it a second thought, most probably the oil is wiped off one side when tearing the drop stick out. Thus, I should consider the thicker oil covered side.

Done 2016-Jul-02 at 9511 km, next time at 10011 km. Still almost full. Hope is rising that the suprisingly high oil consumption was just due to my missinterpretation of the drop stick.

Done 2016-Jul-20 at 10177 km, next time at 10677 km. Was near min, added about 1 l to bring it close to max.

Done 2016-Aug-13 at 10757 km, next time at 11257 km. Was about mid, added about half a litre to full.

Done 2016-Oct-01 at 11385 km, next time at 11885 km. Was about 1/4, added a good half of my new old oil can, to full.

Done 2017-Feb-19 at 11869 km, next time at 12369 km. Was about 1/2, a little bit less than half of my new old oil can, was not completely full, but did not wait to let it settle; should be about full.

Done 2017-Apr-01 at 12586 km, next time at 13086 km. Was about 10 %, added a good half can to 90 %.

Done 2017-Apr-13 at 13262 km, next time at 13762 km. Backside was about 1/2, added about one liter, which didn’t change it max. Again I think maybe only the front side counts; thats is far beyond max.

Done with oil change on 2017-May-14 at 13535 km, next time at 14035 km. Filled up to the Full mark, consiering the oil on the back side. During the fill-in, I had convinced myself that indeed the back side is the relevant one.

Done 2017-Jun-17 at 14200 km, next time at 14700 km. Was at 3/4, nothing added.

Done 2017-Jul-16 at 14846 km, next time at 15346 km. Was a little below min, added about a whole can to bring it exactly to max.

Done 2017-Aug-18 at 15449 km, next time at 15949 km. About half a can to max.

Done 2017-Sep-13 at 16076 km, next time at 16576 km. From half to full with half a can.

Done 2017-Sep-30 at 16764 km, next time at 17264 km. From 1/4 to full with 3/4 can.

Done 2017-Nov-19 at 17295 km, next time at 17795 km. Was full!

Done 2018-0304 at 17835 km, next time at 18335 km. 20 % → 95 %, 3/4 can.

Done 2018-0418 at 18158 km, next time at 18658 km. Topped off with oil change.

5.2  Change front brake fluid

It is usually said that the brake fluid should be replaced every two years. I think this is more than sufficient, particularly for the hydrophobic DOT 5. I go for a service interval of 16000 km.

As I don’t know what is in there, to be on the save side, I should flush it with denatured alcohol (Brennspiritus) and then put DOT 5.

None yet done by myself: Done ??? at -16000 km, next time at 0 km.

Removed the regular brake fluid change from scheduling, as I have now the electric checker.

5.3  Change rear brake fluid

As I have added DOT 3 or 4 to the system and it may have contained DOT 5, I have to flush it with denatured alcohol (Brennspiritus). Then I should put DOT 5.

After I had just passed the ITV (where I was suprised that the brake testing device showed sufficient effect), the rear break effect went down to really nothing. The brake fluid container was still full, but it could be seen that some brighter liquid at the top did not mix with some darker liquid at the bottom. I rinnsed the brake line with cleaning alcohol. I had to open the line at some points (at the pedal pump and at the parking brake) to really get the alcohol through. It flushed out a lot of clumpy stuff. When it looked clean, I put new DOT 4 brake fluid in the container and sucked it through the system with a hand vacuum pump. The liquid looked fine after some time, but I did not get any pressure on the pedal. I tried to bleed it several times, with the hand pump and also with the classical method of pumping the pedal, but there was no pressure at all. I was thinking that the brake pump is faulty and ordered a new one.

While I was waiting for the new brake pump, I looked at the internet for more information. It looks like people use either DOT 4 or DOT 5 on their cars, according to personal preferences. On,

their are some questions about DOT 4 or DOT 5, but nobody reports that he has used DOT 4 on his Boss Hoss. I was still afraid that DOT 4 may not be compatible with some parts of the Brembo system, but then I found some Brembo technical notes on

which stated:

All brembo braking products use natural-rubber base seals, and therefore are INCOMPATIBLE with DOT-5 SILICONE-based brake fluids. DOT- 5 SILICONE-based fluids react with natural-rubber seals to swell them WHICH CAN CAUSE SEVERE PISTON RETRACTION PROBLEMS. There is no cure for problems caused by DOT- 5 use other than complete seals replacement - USE ONLY DOT-3/4 NON-SILICONE TYPE FLUIDS such as CASTROLTM ’LMA’ in your brembo components.

Thus, I think I am fine with using DOT 4. Probably, in the end it does not matter much, and the hundreds of Boss Hoss riders with DOT 5 in their system are fine, too.

While I was further browsing

for brake information, I found something really important: The Brembo rear brake caliper is originally designed for the left side of the wheel. If it is mounted on the right side — like at the Boss Hoss — the bleeding bolt is at the bottom of the caliper and thus non-effective. No wonder that I could not get pressure on the pedal. This is a particularity which should have been covered in the Owner’s Manual.

For the record of the rear brake fluid change: Done 2015-Jul-16 at 5722 km, next time at 21722 km. So, when the new brake pump finally arrived, I had learned that probably I don’t need it. I just removed the caliper, put something between the linings, and bleeded the system. My hand pump did not work at all here, but the classical method gave me quickly pressure on the pedal.

While there is now again pressure on the pedal, the effect of the rear brake is still disappointing, but at least, there is some.

When done this, update also 4.8.

5.4  Flush and replace coolant

The GM recommended orange stuff would be “extended lifetime”, but I go for the “usual green stuff” which should be replaced every two years. I prefer to have things scheduled by mileage, thus I assume a service interval of 16000 km.

Done 2013-Aug-25 at 2226 km, next time at 18226 km. Used Carefour −25C (40 %) green stuff. I could not find a drain valve, thus I losened the (short) lower radiator hose to the water pump. I could not get it off completely without removing the water punp, therefore, I losened both ends of the hose and push it away from the water pump as far as possible. When squeezing it a little bit, the coolant ran out. It was mostly clear, with a few black particles, no oil, just smelled old. The capacity of the cooling system is given with 12 quarts (11.4 liters), however, what came out was only about 6 liters; I suppose the rest remained in the engine itself. I filled the radiator with water and let it idle a bit to flush it, but then it came to my mind that about half or the old coolant is still in the engine, so it is just diluted, and this dilution is only partly removed by draining again the radiator and refilling with coolant. I did this drain, idle, and coolant refill two times in order to get somewhat close to the original concentration of the coolant. Next time, I shall not flush with water, but may be with coolant. Or just do the simple one time drain and refill frequently enough. If I really want to flush the coolant completely, there should be two drain plugs on each side of the block.

Done a few days after 2015-Apr-25 at 3790 km, next time at 11790 km. When sealing the intake manifold (cf. 6.5), the radiator had to come off anyway. Getting off the lower hose is much easier with losing the radiator that the way I did it last time. I learned also that in the Boss Hoss, the engine does not have a thermostat. I was thinking that I may get the old coolant completely out by running the (electric) water pump, but that did not get any more liquid out than already drained. While I had filled in 40 % coolant last time, I could only get 25 % coolant this time. Because I feel a little bit uneasy about this (although it should not be a problem in hot Spain) I have temporarily reduced the service interval from 16000 to 8000 km.

When done this, update the check 4.12.

Done 2017-Apr-13 at 13039 km, next time at 21039 km. Norauto and Feu Vert only had either the longlife stuff or very low concentration. Found the regular about 50 % stuff at Carrefour. I have to check the exact name and how much I put in. One extra splash came out when I briefly ran the pump. Filling was convenient with the new metal can. I leave the service interval at 8000 km, which implies about every two years.

5.5  Replace throttle cable

I replace it every 32000 km. I start from the pretended mileage when I bought her.

Done when new at -5000 km, next time at 27000 km.

5.6  Replace front tire

At this occasion:

When trying to remove the front wheel, I noticed that I do not have a 3/8″ inbus wrench, so I ordered a set on Amazon from Oxid7 for eur 12.90 plus eur 4.94 for shipping. It came very quickly within six days.

I also found that the bolts (6 mm, metric since it’s Brembo) holding the front brake calipers are quite tight and seem to be difficult to remove with a regular inbus wrench without demaging them. So I got a little impact driver. It needed some tens of seconds on some of the bolts, but finally removed them all easily.

So, I removed the wheel and had the tire replaced by SASAM. They do not have Avon (which was the old one), so I chose Metzeler. On 2013-Aug-03 at 1266 km, I reinstalled the wheel without poblems.

5.7  Replace rear tire

At this occasion:

SASAM would also change a tire which I bring. The mechanic to which I spoke is usually in on Saturdays. Price would be eur 15.

I took the Avon which I bought from Andrés to SASAM, but the mechanic spooted a mark at the inner rim of the shoulter. I refrained from having this one installed and bought a new Metzeler instead. The final prize (with a discount of 40 % on the invoice) was eur 264.

On 2013-Sep-14 at 2784 km, I reinstalled the whell. Getting the wheel out and back in is pretty much straight forward. I bought a small hydraulic lifter to get the back up. It needed a little plate of wood under the lifter to get the wheel high enouth to turn freely.

The rear tire went flat over night. There was some metal piece sticking in it. Got a new tire from SASAM on 2017-Aug-14, must have been at about 15 400 km.

5.8  Replace battery

It is usually said that a battery lasts five years. Transforming this somewhat reasonably to a mileage, I assume a replacement interval of 16000 km.

On 2013-Jun-22, removed the seat pan (one of the bolts holding it was broken and could not be reïnstalled) and looked at the battery. There is a big Nappa battery installed, using all the available space. The pole shoes (which have possibly exchanged just to fit the Nappa battery) would most probably not fit the recommended Odyssey battery. There is no mounting bracket at all; there should be one holding the Odyssey battery.

Recently bought a Varta A14 for the Insight. A15 would have been the right one but was not available. The A14 has reversed poles, but can be connected with some effort. Tried the A14 on Wendy, but engine was hardly turned and starter selenoid flickered. No way.

Done 2013-Aug-17 at 1885 km, next time at 17885 km. Got the recommended battery Hawker Odyssey PC680MJ from Akkufit-Elektrohandel Oliver Heib1. The MJ in the battery type refers to the Metal Jacket version. The addtional T at the end of the type in the Owner’s Manual recommendation refers to the automotive terminals, which I ordered seperately (eur 169+12.90). I took out the Nappa battery. Cleaned the plate holding the battery from remnants of some battery boiling with water and baking powder. Put in the Odyssey. I cut of the pole shoes and fitted some from Norauto. As the mounting bracket is missing, I use a luggage strap and some wood and Duct tape construction to hold the battery in place, for the time being.

Done 2015-Mar-28 at 3035 km, next time at 19035 km. When Wendy came back from the Netherlands, the battery was flat and I had to charge it (cf. 6.4). I noted in the invoice that the dealer charged me for a new battery, and indeed, my little Hawker Odyssey had been replaced by something bigger. I suppose that the long standing times at the dealer had killed my Odyssey. As noted above, also the new one was already flat. One nice thing about the new battery is that it has a color indicator for its state (full/charge/replace). To be conservative, I assume that the battery was replaced at the mileage with which Wendy was shipped to the Netherlands.

Done 2015-Nov-13 at 11626 km, next time at 19626 km. After the transmission oil change, the battery was flat, thus it did not last long. Curiously, the color indicator still said it was fine. Ordered another Howker (with new pole adapters) and put it in. Started right out of the box. Reduced the change intervall to 8000 km. This equals now the service interval for checkin the battery, thus, for the time being, I remove the check from the list.

5.9  Check ingnition timing

In fact, there should be no need to check the preset ignition timing. However, I was thinking that the rough running at low load may be due to wrong timing. I have ordered a timing light and shall check it, just in case. Afterwards, I assume for the start a check interval of 8000 km.

In fact the rough running was gone when Wendy was back from the Netherlands for changing the hot cam to the normal one, so it was possibly related to the cam — or may be not. The hot cam would have required a much larger timing advance, for which there was no mark on the distributor. May be there was never a hot cam in there and the importer in Cologne cheated me. I never got the removed hot cam from the dealer in the Netherlands who changed it.

Done 2016-May-01 at 8481 km, next time at 16481 km. After I had resealed the intake manifold (6.5), I reassembled the distributor in exactly the same position as it was before. There are marks on the istributor, two on one side, one on the other side. The single mark did not match either of the other two. I think one of the two marks corresponds to 0, the other to 10 advance (the recommended ignition timing). Corresponding to the position of the single mark and also to the timing light, the ignition was set a few degrees earlier than recommended. First, I got a wrong measurement with the timing light, because I had the arrow on the clamp around the spark plug wire pointing towards the distributor (which made the timing appear to be much too early), while the arrow needs to point to the spark plug. I adjusted the advance to exactly 10. This increased the idle speed significantly to almost 1000 rpm.

Remember to remove the vacuum hose from the distributor and plug it (M5 bolt does well) when adjusting the timing.

Done 2017-Sep-30 at 16764 km, next time at 24764 km. Was a little bit early; adjusted it with the idle set to 800.

5.10  Replace PCV valve

The rough running at low load may be due to a PCV valve malfunction. I shall order a valve and replace it, just in case. Afterwards, I assume a replacement interval of 32000 km. I check the PCV valve with each engine oil change (4.1).

On 2013-Aug-20 at 2010 km, I disconneced the hose from the PCV valve and plugged it. The engine did not jerk at low load any more.

Measured the size of the PCV valve: Connection to the hose is 3/8″, base which fits in the grommet in the valve cover is 3/4″.

Ordered a S6008 PCV Valve from mr.topspeed on ebay for Ł 29.95 plus Ł 10 for shipping.

Done 2014-Aug-27 at 2349 km, next time at 34349 km. Pretty easy replace, fitted perfectly. Deviating from what was advertised, there was go gromet included, but the old one was still fine. The rough running at low load is almost completely gone. A little bit like it is still there when the engine is cold. This is consistent with the idea that the valve was stuck open. Now the engine seems to heat up much less when riding in the low gear.

5.11  Replace fuel filter

I am thinking to replace it every 32000 km, starting from the pretended mileage when I bought her. May be the service intervals for this and for checking the fuel lines (4.14) can be equalized and both be done at the same time.

Done when new at -5000 km, next time at 27000 km.


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