Rear Brake not working at all - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-21-2019, 02:41 AM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Rear Brake not working at all


Hi everyone,

I have noticed a new problem, my rear brake is not working at all! I push it all the way and it is like not even there ...
Some history: I couple of months back, I parked my motorcycle on the street right in the back of some delivery truck, and when I returned from work and left I noticed the mirrors where facing the sky ... I stopped and I checked the mirrors, and the right one was scratched, then I inspected the bike and saw scratches on the right signal, foot peg, etc. So the mo*****er backed up and hit my bike and (at least) he picked it up and left ...
From this happy encounter, also my rear brake was bent, and after 2 weeks the cast iron part that holds the foot peg and the break lever broke in half and I hat to replace it (80 EURO for that part ).

The rear brake was always weak from when I bought the bike, and I didn't gave it any attention, but yesterday I noticed it doesn't work at all.
In the meanwhile I also installed a center stand, as I mentioned in another post, and bent back the break pedal toward the outside of the bike so I can use it ...

Do you guys have any idea why this is happening, and what can I check or do?

Thanks in advance!
Ovi

Last edited by fasteddiecopeman; 06-21-2019 at 12:52 PM. Reason: helped a bit w/ spelling
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-21-2019, 04:18 AM
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I would bleed the brake first. Most of the time when a brake isn't working as it should, there's air in the system. So bleed it thoroughly and see if that helps. Make sure you keep an eye on the oil level while bleeding.

If that doesn't help, it could be a leaky oil seal in the brake master cylinder.
How old is the bike? Has the brake fluid been changed every two years?
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-21-2019, 06:04 AM Thread Starter
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Hi Kevin,

The bike is from 2008, and to be honest, I have no idea if the break fluid was ever changed ...
Is the break fluid bleeding something I can do (is it complicated?) or should I go to a service?

Thanks!
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-21-2019, 07:21 AM
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First thing to check is if there is fluid in the reservoir.
Second thing to check is if there is fluid where there should be none.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-21-2019, 07:56 AM
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bleeding brakes is in the manual. Unless you know for sure it has been done in the last 3 years it should be done and a high priority. The type of brake fluid is marked on the reservoir cap under the seat. Many don't understand that brake fluid deteriorates over time and picks up moisture, a common practice is to replace the brake fluid every 5 years maximum. My front calipers ( 2007 Versys) when bled had orange colour in the brake fluid as in rust from moisture. One thing that makes it easier is using a vacuum brake bleeding system, my son happened to have one, this still requires patience and a second person makes it go faster, the second person's job is to keep the brake reservoir filled with fresh brake fluid. Without a vacuum brake bleeding system, you need to follow the manual. FYI I sent a PM in this regard.
Last, be aware your rear brake is roughly 10% of your braking, 90% is your front brake, add in engine braking and I have easily broke traction by aggressive engine braking and applying some rear brake, as I said, front is 90% of all braking.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-21-2019, 08:21 AM
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Back brake is very weak in most Versys and its only meant for emergency when you apply both the brakes. As said 90% of breaking is front and you drop a gear which will bring about engine braking.

Brakes should be serviced as per manual and brake oil changed as per service manual too.

Do a trough check on you brake system. if you have not done so or have no idea on the work get it to a mechanic and observe work done so next time you can do it yourself.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-21-2019, 09:52 AM
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Yes, you can easily bleed the brakes yourself!

Get a bleeder valve tool with some clear plastic hose. It attaches to the bleeder nipple, and it lets the old fluid out but doesn't let air back in. You don't need to use the tool but it helps a lot.

Fill the reservoir with new fluid. BE SURE TO USE THE CORRECT TYPE OF FLUID. Then press down on the brake pedal and loosen the nipple until fluid just starts to come out. If you loosen it too much it will allow air in. When you press down, fluid will come out. When you release the pedal new fluid will be sucked into the system from the reservoir. The bleeder valve tool helps make this quick and easy. If you don't have the tool, you must tighten up the nipple before releasing the brake pedal so that air doesn't get sucked up into the caliper.

It is really easy to do. The tool is not expensive. Or, have a friend help. One of you presses on the brake pedal, the other opens and closes the nipple.

Repeat until only new fluid is coming out of the nipple.

The old fluid can be left out in the air to evaporate. Or, at least where I live, you can use kitty litter or another absorbent material and then put it in the trash. It doesn't need to be recycled here if it is a small amount not from a business.

Now is a good time to maintain the rear brakes. You can replace the rubber o-rings in the caliper. Also, lube the pins that the caliper slides on. Get a good brake grease, made for high temperatures. Take the caliper apart and put the grease on both slide pins. This is a very easy job, don't be intimidated.

Replace the brake pads. Mine were contaminated from some very fine powder from an offroad ride and never were as good as they were new. I put on new pads and the rear brake is now very strong. Better than new. I used sintered pads. No need to go with ceramics or carbon or any other fancy expensive stuff. I used EBC brand Double H Sintered pads.
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Last edited by Fly-Sig; 06-21-2019 at 09:54 AM.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-24-2019, 03:20 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fly-Sig View Post
Yes, you can easily bleed the brakes yourself!

Get a bleeder valve tool with some clear plastic hose. It attaches to the bleeder nipple, and it lets the old fluid out but doesn't let air back in. You don't need to use the tool but it helps a lot.

....
Thanks a lot for all the detailed information!
I will try to do it

BR,
Ovi
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