The KRX 1000, officially known as the Kawasaki Teryx KRX 1000, is a favorite among outdoor enthusiasts who have a need for speed when hitting the trails.
As Kawasaki’s sport side-by-side, this model offers an appealing build, a high performance engine, and the same durability and dependability the line of Kawasaki Mule utility vehicles have built their names on through the years.
But despite these many positives, there do exist some common Kawasaki KRX 1000 problems.
Kawasaki KRX 1000 Problems
Here are the most common Kawasaki KRX 1000 problems:
- Clutch Trouble
- Spring Sag
- Faulty Fuel Gauge
- Axle Caps Coming Loose
- Spongy Brakes
This guide will detail each of these problems, including likely causes and proven fixes.
For more information on both the strengths and weaknesses of these vehicles, check out this review of the Kawasaki Teryx models.
Most Common Kawasaki KRX Problems
The most common issue found in the KRX 1000 is the stock clutch causing issues.
Numerous owners report excessive clutch drag, which creates hard shifting in and out of gear.
Belt slippage is another problem, leading to a whining noise when idling or coasting downhill.
And the vehicle tends to slip out of gear often as well.
All of these are symptoms of a faulty clutch, and will eventually lead to premature clutch failure.
These issues with the stock clutches tend to stem from two components of the clutch system – the weights and the rollers.
The chrome on the factory weights leads to galling with the side of the clutch, which wears the weights down rather quickly and leads to clutch sheaves.
For this reason, it is recommended to replace the factory weights with uncoated weights, such as those included in RCOR’s KRX 1000 clutch kit.
Many owners confirm that these higher quality weights last longer and lead to better overall performance from their clutch.
The rollers are the other main source of clutch issues, as there is a bushing inside of them that tends to wear out quickly and makes them stick.
This then has a negative effect on the weights. While it is known that operating at sustained high speeds often will wear out the rollers faster than driving at varied speeds, there is no real way to prevent this from happening or to service the rollers.
While Kawasaki has attempted to address these clutch issues in new models by installing upgraded weights, time will tell whether the rollers stop this from having the desired effect.
Preventing A Failing Clutch
There are some steps owners can take to aid in preventing a failing clutch.
Idling for long periods is known to increase the wear on the clutch faster. A best practice is for owners to cut the engine off when stopped for extended periods of time, rather than letting the vehicle idle.
Additionally, it is recommended that owners clean their clutch system by blowing out both the primary and secondary clutches with a compressor around every 300 miles.
Grit and grime buildup in clutches will occur regardless of where or how owners drive their vehicle.
This buildup will cause excessive wear on the clutch if not removed. Multiple mechanics have confirmed that doing this will prolong the life of your clutch.
Clutch Replacement From Kawasaki
For owners experiencing clutch issues, especially those whose machines are popping out of gear, Kawasaki is well aware of this problem and will likely cover a full clutch replacement under warranty.
But as this usually leaves the vehicle out of commission for some time, many owners have been able to overcome this on their own by way of aftermarket clutch kits and upgraded weights, along with added focus on preventative maintenance for their clutch.
Another common issue in the KRX 1000 is spring sag. Over time, usually when reaching around 300 to 500 miles of riding, the stock springs in the front and rear of the vehicle will begin to sag under any added weight.
This will negatively affect the UTV’s ground clearance, with riders only getting around 11 inches rather than the listed 14 inches, and can lead to bottoming out during trail rides more often.
This happens as the stock springs used in the KRX 1000 are not of the highest quality. While owners do have the ability to adjust the preload on the springs to offset this sagging for some time, eventually the sag will overcome that preload adjustment as well.
Installing aftermarket tender springs is the best solution to this problem.
RCOR Tender Springs, All Things UTV Tender Springs, Bandit Tender Springs, and Shock Therapy Tender Springs are all highly recommended and compatible with the KRX 1000.
They can be installed by the owner fairly easily, with a number of video tutorials available online for guidance.
Each of these sets of aftermarket tender springs will not only increase the standard ground clearance of your vehicle, but are also more high quality than the stock springs and will not sag over time.
Axle Caps Coming Loose
One of the top complaints with the Kawasaki KRX 1000 is the tendency for the axle caps that fit on the end of each axle, in the center of each tire, to fall off very easily.
Many riders report missing some of them after their very first ride.
While not the biggest deal, a missing axle cap does not look natural for the tire. Understandably, after opening their billfolds for an expensive vehicle such as this one, owners want it to look top-notch.
This requires all four axle caps being present on the tires. And these little plastic/rubber caps are not cheap, running you around $25 each per replacement.
Fortunately, there is a simple solution here.
Owners should remove the axle caps and apply silicone adhesive or self-stick rubber foam strips to each to help hold them in place, then reinsert them. This fix is proven to keep them secured to the axle ends.
Faulty Fuel Gauge
The fuel gauge in the KRX 1000 is wildly inaccurate and will fluctuate randomly during rides, leaving owners frustrated and stressed about not really knowing how much fuel they have left at any time unless keeping track themselves.
This happens due to a flaw in the design of the fuel float/sensor within the fuel tank.
The float rests upon a plastic lip within the tank, so is not able to move to the bottom of the fuel tank as it should as the fuel empties.
This leads to the inaccuracy of the fuel gauge.
Owners can fix this issue rather easily following the steps below:
- Remove the passenger seat and frame to locate the fuel tank
- Remove the fuel tank cover
- Clean around the top of the fuel pump
- Unplug the power plug and disconnect it from the fuel line
- Remove the 6 bolts from the pump retainer ring to remove the fuel pump
- Bend the arm of the float outward to the left and then downward
Making this adjustment will give the float/sensor the ability to move fully up and down as it should and give owners a more accurate fuel reading.
The brakes in the KRX 1000 are another common source of frustration, with many owners reporting that the brake pedal feels like it has too much give, with the brakes slow to react to the pressure applied.
Owners may need to exert more than the usual amount of force on the pedal in order to stop the vehicle.
This is usually an issue in newer machines, with the brakes eventually working in and the issue subsiding within a couple hundred miles of use.
But for folks who don’t want to wait that long, bleeding the brake fluid reservoir and completely replacing the brake fluid may help to resolve this issue faster.
While Kawasaki engines are looked at as some of the best in the industry, they’re not without their drawbacks.
Like many other UTV engines, they are prone to overheating. This can occur for a few different reasons.
- Clogged Radiator
- Temperature Sensor
- Air Blockage in Coolant System
- Blown Head Gasket
The KRX 1000 radiator can become clogged with sand, mud, and grass over time which will lead to overheating.
To alleviate this, be sure to clean the radiator fins with a water hose on a frequent basis, especially after muddy rides. Note that it is important not to use a pressure washer to do this.
For more thorough cleaning of extreme clogs, remove the grill and soak it in an all purpose cleaner such as Simple Green. Once soaked, spray out the remaining debris with a hose from the front and back.
The fan in the KRX 1000 is programmed not to engage until the engine reaches temperatures of around 200 degrees.
A problem can arise when running in low gear for an extended period of time, especially in warmer climates or at higher elevations.
As the fan is not triggered until 200 degrees, sometimes in these conditions that is not enough time to keep the engine out of the overheating zone, which starts around 230 degrees.
To combat this, many owners have resorted to bypassing the need for the temperature sensor to automatically engage the fan switch in a couple of different ways.
Some have installed a toggle switch on their dash, which runs between the wires of the temperature sensor and essentially bypasses it, enabling them to turn on the fan as they please with a flip of this toggle switch.
Others have taken it to a different level, rigging their machines so that the fan automatically engages and runs constantly when the engine is on.
Another option is having your machine tuned or the ECU flashed, which gives folks the option of resetting the fan to trigger at around 190 degrees.
All of these methods have worked well to minimize these overheating issues.
Airlock In Coolant System
An air pocket blockage somewhere in the coolant system is another of the main causes of the KRX 1000 overheating. How can an air pocket form?
Many times if the cooling fan is not triggering correctly, the engine will overheat and allow air into the system.
If this happens, the air usually works its way to the water pump, which won’t pump air. This results in a blockage that restricts it from pumping coolant as intended, which results in the KRX 1000’s engine overheating.
When air pocket forms in the system, the engine won’t stop overheating ’til that air is bled out. You can bleed the air by following the steps below:
- Raise the front end of your side-by-side by parking on a hill or using a lift
- Ensure the engine is cold
- Remove the radiator cap from the fill area
- Fill the radiator with coolant until it just overflows
- Be sure and repeat the steps above for any overflow reservoir
- Start the engine and let it idle – you’ll likely see bubbles
- When these bubbles have stopped, kill the engine and replenish coolant if necessary
- Repeat this process until you no longer see bubbles
- Reinstall your radiator cap (and reservoir cap if applicable)
At this point your coolant system should be free of any air blockage. But if you see excessive bubbling from the radiator fill area that just won’t go away, this is a tell-tale sign of a blown head gasket.
Blown Head Gasket
Any overheating the engine experiences puts your head gaskets at risk of blowing. And a blown head gasket will lead to recurring overheating, along with other issues.
You can purchase a head gasket test kit to confirm whether your head gaskets are blown, or simply replace them if you suspect this to be the case.
In summary, the most common Kawasaki KRX 1000 problems are clutch trouble, spring sag, a faulty fuel gauge, the axle caps coming loose, spongy brakes, and overheating.
While the KRX 1000 is rightfully viewed as one of the best sport side-by-sides in the industry, owners should be aware that they may experience some of these issues and take the proper proactive steps to avoid and overcome them.
For more on Kawasaki side-by-sides check out this guide to the strengths and weaknesses of the Kawasaki Teryx 800, which is just a step below the KRX 1000.