Cooling fan

Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
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steve 302
Posts: 31
Joined: Sun Feb 17, 2013 10:24 am
Location: North Pole, Alaska
Motorcycle: 1981 gl1100 interstate

Cooling fan

Post by steve 302 » Wed May 14, 2014 9:55 am

Cooling fan does not come on. I know I have seen an article on this somewhere. How do I go about fixing it? Thanks in advance :D

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Posts: 871
Joined: Sun Nov 21, 2010 11:37 pm
Location: Marengo, Ohio
Motorcycle: 1983 GL1100 I purchased 3/16

1983 GL1100I frame with an 80 engine. poor boy installed with C-5 ignition--DIED in Grande Prairie Alberta Canada 8/15

98 valkyrie sold 8/16

Re: Cooling fan

Post by Wilcoy02 » Wed May 14, 2014 10:27 am

what bike we talking about?
the most common is the temp sensor on the front behind the radiator- on top of engine.
Some just run a wire from fan to a switch and manually turn fan on/off.

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Motorcycle: 2000 GL1500 SE
1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
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1998 XV250 Virago (sold)
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Re: Cooling fan

Post by WingAdmin » Wed May 14, 2014 11:43 am

First is to determine the cause of the problem. Power comes from the battery, to the fan, and then from the fan to a switch mounted in the engine block and reading the coolant temperature. When the switch turns on (at a set temperature point) it connects the wire to ground, completing the circuit and turning the fan on.

Disconnect the wire from the switch, turn the bike's ignition to ON, then ground the wire against the engine case. If the fan turns on, then the switch is at fault, and needs to be replaced. If the fan doesn't turn on, the problem is elsewhere - either the fan is bad, a fuse is blown, or a wire is cut.

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Re: Cooling fan

Post by RBGERSON » Thu May 15, 2014 10:08 am

Options test as stated above if the fan works three options replace or rebuild the it's probably faulty or add a manual switch to the circuit..tie in a ground wire, to a switch and it should turn the fan on whenever you want.

You can pull the sensor w/o too much work..lowers off, unplug it and big deep socket to loose and remove..or long pliers??? The sensor can be disassembled and the pin cleaned up and then they usually work..can be tested in a pot of water using a meter to note if it closes the circuit and at what temp..need a candy or meat thermometer and your wife out of the house. :lol:


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Location: Central Iowa
Motorcycle: 1981 GL1100 interstate

Re: Cooling fan

Post by ankgrays » Thu May 15, 2014 9:18 pm

Hi from Iowa!

New guy here. Just bought an '81 GW Interstate.

Having the same problem with mine. I found out it IS the switch.

Found the switch, but in removing the rubber boot, I ripped a chunk out of the boot, now I have to go out and buy a replacement boot, an extention

for my ratchet and waste more riding time.

Good thing most of the days are still a bit chilly!

Thanks for the HUGE amount of info on this site.

I haven't had a bike in over 25 years...(you know..marriage, kids, house..all that "grown up stuff" we have to do.)...But this thing is gonna be fun!!

Happy riding!!

I don't tolerate voluntary stupidity very well, and it seems to be rampant now-a-days.

Only a fool looks for logic in the chambers of the human heart.
Ulysses Everett McGill

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