Question about 1980 Suzuki Gs 550 L

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Hello l have a suzki gs250 82model leaking fuel from rear of the carby (pilot air screw)+the overflow. have checked the float hight needle and seat seems to be cutting the fuel off ok. bike runs but very rich any help would be great thank you darren

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  • andavtr Mar 07, 2009

    thank you FTjoe

    l will have a look at the float hight again but fuel is coming out of every hole on the carby. when l move the choke back and foreward it seems to stop and worked for a short while thank you



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Gas leaking out of the overflow tube is definately a float or float tang problem. if you are sure the tang on the float is adjusted probably, then the float may have a hole in it and it is no longer "floating" to shut off the supply of fuel. i'd remove it and submerge it in gas for a bit and look for air bubbles escaping and also see if it no longer floats after you release it from being submerged. if either happens, then replace the float.

running rich is an improperly adjusted air screw, wrong setting on the jet needle (long needle attached to the carb slide with a circlip), clogged airfilter or wrong jet (main or pilot) size. i'd try to find out the settings for these items and adjust accordingly.

hope you get it all sorted out and get this classic back on the road!

Posted on Mar 07, 2009

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Unplug the fuel line at the carb and plug in a fuel pressure gauge:

If the pressure is too high, it could force fuel into the float bowl by forcing the float needle off it's seat.

When you replaced the float needle and seat, did you verify/readjust the float level?
The stop at the back of the floats can break if they are installed improperly, and the brass pin that holds them in place can wear an oval hole in the float pivot. New floats are not a bad idea if you're doing a rebuild.
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Only runs with full choke, I bought the bike last week and the float needle was stuck and I think it had bad gas. so I changed the gas, cleaned the carb, reset the float needle. I also set the main slide...

Hi mate reverse the needle clip position back to factory setting this issue is pilot circuit for sure - If you have cleaned carbi you need to replace or clean the pilot jet and compress air clean the hole where the pilot jet came out of to clear the circuit. Running only with choke on is classic symptom of block pilot circuit...
Also check you fuel air mix screw this may have been altered trying to correct this issue it should be 1.5 - 2.5 turns out from fully closed..
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and reason for running with choke on is it is changes air fuel mix with choke on compensating for lack of fuel from the pilot jet blockage
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1 Answer

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To test and clean, turn off fuel tap and drain fuel from carby via drain plug. Loosen carby manifold clamps and rotate carby enough to undo floatbowl. Return carby to level position and place a spill container underneath carby, turn fuel tap on and off (enough to allow small flow of fuel through open needle seat).

Now, gently hold up floatbowl with enough lift to close off needle valve seat and turn fuel tap on. If fuel still comes out you have a severe needle and seat problem requiring a replacement, if only a small weep of fuel is emitted it may just need a clean with a carby cleaning spray.

If no fuel comes out, your problem is the height adlustment of the floatbowl's level. Your engine is not using all the fuel that can be delivered and flows out the overflow outlet. The floatbowl level should be re-set incrementally to avoid leaning out your engine at high revs with too low a float level. To close off with a lower level you need to bend the small tab upwards.

The link below is for the same carby in exploded view format with all parts named. Cheers!

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My 1991 suzuki gsf400 has erratic idling. also is hard to start.

This could be almost anything, probably minor. Good premium unleaded fuel, fresh/clean and gapped plugs, fuel filters clean,. Carbies clean and jets good, correct float levels, no air leaks in intakes, air filter clean, Electrical connections 100%, ignition coils OK, no sign of moisture behind magneto/stator cover or on source/pick-up coils. Engine earth wire secure from head to frame?
New plugs, 0.7mm gap to start with and set air* mixture screw 1.5 turns out.
To flush carby with cleaning solvent (spray can from auto access.) Take float bowls off (check for sediment) and fuel lines off and spray till it pours out of float needle seat, Loosen carby clamps and swivel carbies outwards 90 degrees and unscrew pilot jets and spray thru also. Check operation and smooth return of choke.
* Air mixture screw controls fuel-air mixture at idle speed and is a trial and error thing. Pilot and Main jets regulate cruising and acceleration mixtures and ranges according to rider style and riding and climate conditions.
If there is any undue noise comming from the top of the engine with revs slowly rising from idle to 2000 revs, you may need to check camchain tension and valve clearances, easy done with some simple tools and a manual. Downloadable free with an engine search!
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1 Answer

I am getting fuel leaking from the bottom of the carb and I have adjusted the screws on the bottom of the carb but it is still is a 1997 flstf fatboy

Carburetors have a Float Bowl on the bottom. This float bowl has a small amount of fuel, that the carburetor uses. (The float bowl's amount of fuel, is replenished from the gas tank. The fuel is gravity fed from the gas tank, through the Fuel Line)

The float bowl has a Float Needle inside. The float needle is attached to the Float. The Float resembles a thick doughnut. On one end of this doughnut, is a flat piece of metal shaped like a U on the end. Looking at this -> U shape, there are two holes at the top. There is a metal pin that goes through these holes, and the pin is attached on it's end's, by the main body of the carburetor.

The flat metal U shape, and the metal pin, works together to form a type of hinge, allowing the float to pivot on it.
Where the U shaped hinge is attached, the float needle, clips to it.

The float needle has a tapered neoprene tip, and sits in a Float Needle Seat. This seat is a barrel shaped piece of brass, and has a tapered hole at the bottom. Fuel comes up through this seat, and the float needle regulates how much fuel can come in.

As the float drops down, it draws the float needle out of the float needle seat, and fuel comes in. As the float bowl fills with fuel, the float rises, and pushes the float back up, also pushing the float needle back into the float needle seat, cutting off the flow of fuel.

There is a specified height of the float, in relation to where the float sits in the float bowl. If the float sits too high, the float bowl fills up with fuel, and overflows. This overflow goes through an Overflow Tube, on the carburetor.
(If the float sits too low, the engine starves for gas)

A LOT of times, crud builds up in the gas tank, makes it's way through the fuel line, and gets into the float bowl. It can get in-between the float needle, and the float seat, thereby flooding the carburetor out, and fuel comes out of the overflow tube.

The float bowl is also attached to the carburetor with a brass main jet nut. At the bottom of the float bowl, this will look like a brass head of a bolt. Under the brass head is a small O-ring. This can leak. First step is too insure this is tight. (Do Not Over tighten! This is part of the main jet, and is expensive! It's Brass)

Where the outer part of the float bowl itself, attaches to the carburetor, there is another O-ring.
A large one. This O-ring, like the main jet O-ring, can deteriorate over time. Additives that gasoline has in it, heat from the engine, and heat from the sun does this. Plus just age. Neoprene breaks down after time.

It could also be that the neoprene tip of the float needle has broken down.

You indicated you adjusted screws on the bottom.
These are the Main Jet, and Idle Jet -> Air Mixture screws. All they adjust is how much air goes through these jets.
The amount of fuel going through, is predetermined by specific passageways, that are drilled through the main body of the carburetor.

This only comes into play when the engine is running. With the engine off, and fuel leaking out, you have crud under the float needle, or one or more of those O-rings has deteriorated.

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I don't know if its any help but I've fixed my Honda with similar problem. It turns out I reassembled the rich carbys air cut off valve incorrectly. Have you checked yours? I'm wondering if the cut off valves somehow affect the other parts of the carbys. Mine is running sweet now.

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