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Motorcycle won't start!


steveinGa

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Last week I bought a 2005 R12ST with 5000 miles. Still under warranty.

Rode about 7 miles around neighborhood until registered with state yesterday.

Now it will not start!

Yes, it has fuel, battery is charged.

When I push ignition button, it makes a repetitive clicking sound.

General warning light goes on (Yellow triangle with exclamation mark)

Then image of engine shows--indicating fault in engine electronics, according to Rider's Manual.

Tomorrow I will call dealer who sold me the bike. But he is located 1000 miles away. Nearest dealer more than 100 miles away.

 

Any thoughts from the esteemed riders on this forum?

 

Steve

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Wooster- That was my first thought. Tried my Official BMW Motorcycle battery charger. But the ammeter never went above the 0.5 level. My understanding is that indicates battery is fully charged. Left it connected a couple hours anyway--no start.

Will have battery checked whith hygrometer (?) anyway later.

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Do you have a voltmeter?

 

Check that.

Try disconnecting and reconnecting battery.

Do you have another "good" battery?

If it's the original battery, on an '05, it's probably at least 30 months old with long periods on inactivity.

May just need to toss a new one at the bike.

Best wishes.

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Could be a bad starter. Mine died @ ~6k miles, and more than a few starter failures in R1200 bikes have been reported. The brushes in the starter motor can wear oddly and leave it unable to engage. With a fully-charged battery, I got nothing but clicks, and then the pre-start sequence shown on the RID would repeat. You might try giving things a nudge, as if you were going to try to push start it (ignition on, in gear, clutch in, roll a bit, then clutch out) and then try starting it again the normal way. YMMV.

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Thanks for advice.

I am hoping the battery is the culprit, not the starter.

Action Plan:

1. Extended connection to charger (12 hours)

2. In am, if will not start, will remove battery and take it to local auto supply store to test with voltmeter

3. Starter will be next suspect if battery found innocent

Steve

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...Tried my Official BMW Motorcycle battery charger. But the ammeter never went above the 0.5 level. My understanding is that indicates battery is fully charged. Left it connected a couple hours anyway--no start.

Will have battery checked whith hygrometer (?) anyway later.

 

What I know about electricity can be written on a small paper with a large crayon; however, a bmw tech explained to me that a bad battery can be like a leaky bucket (now that I get). Regardless of how much electricity you put in, it just piddles out the other end. In other words, a charger can say "good" even when battery is bad.

 

Wooster w/plumber's understanding of electricity

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Check the battery first. Voltage should read about 12.5 - 12.9 on a good battery. Then check the cables for corrosion or not tight.

 

On a 2 year old bike with low miles I'll bet on the battery.

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The 1st thing I would look at are all the connections for corrosion, even a minor amount can cause what you're describing. Check to see if connections at battery, ground to frame and at the starter are clean and tight. Good luck.

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Steve, You might not have the correct charger for the canbus system if you are charging through the acc. plug.

 

Without a voltmeter you are guessing.

If it were me, I would try jump starting with cables directly to the battery. If it starts...the starter is good.

Then I would check charging system with voltmeter.

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clap.gif

The diagnosis has been established-

After 8 hours of connection to charger, all I got was clickety sound.

Connectors looked fine.

I jumpstarted with connection to a car, follwing instructions in Rider's Manual, and it started immediately.

Doubt that battery will hold charge; plan to replace.

The replacement process is much easier on this bike than my R1200C. which required removal of gas tank to approch battery. Three people were needed to change the battery on that bike: me, one person to remove tank and replace battery, and a third person to keep me out of the way.

 

Good Riding!

 

Steve

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clap.gif

The diagnosis has been established-

After 8 hours of connection to charger, all I got was clickety sound.

 

While it's probably time to replace the battery, how were you trying to charge it? If using the accessory socket, you need the special CANBUS charger and there's a specific sequence to plug it in to charge the battery. If you were using a Battery Tender or the charger from your old BMW, it won't work unless hooked directly to the battery.

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I used the bmw charger from my 1994 bike that connects to accessory socket. It did not work. Next time I will use generic charger and attach directly to poles of battery. The Rider's Manual makes no reference to this CANBUS issue.

Fortunately, this forum does

Thanks

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stubblejumper

From the link below.

http://www.ascycles.com/detail.aspx?ID=2678

ATTENTION!!!! You must first turn the key on to the bike, then you plug the charger into the accessory socket, then you plug the charger into the wall for power, then you turn the key off.

Failure to do it this way will result in the charger not charging the battery and overheating.

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If the bike started easily one day and won't even turn over the next, it's very unlikely to be the battery. As others have said, it's probably a lousy connection, and probably right at the battery connections. Disassemble and clean the battery terminals and wire connectors until they are shiny, then assemble them tightly.

 

If you want to get fancy, put a voltmeter right on the battery terminals (not the wire connectors) and try to start it. If the voltage stays up (more than 10 volts) then the problem is likely the connection. If the actual battery voltage collapses, then it's the battery. Then you can try it at the wire connectors themselves. If the voltage collapses the connection to the battery terminals is bad. If it does not collapse, you've got a bigger problem elsewhere.

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If the bike started easily one day and won't even turn over the next, it's very unlikely to be the battery.

 

Why do you say this? He says that it started immediately when he jump-started it. This sounds like a definite battery issue to me - one that is either worn out or just needs to be charged properly.

 

By the way, welcome to the board! wave.gif

 

Jay

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Thanks to all for ideas.

This am bike started just fine after some exercise yesterday.

Expect to replace battery in not-too-distant future

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It's always best ot keep the battery plugged in on the charger whenever you park it if possible. I used Battery Tender Jr.'s for years. They are compatible wiht the newer BMW batteries... but my dealer said the BMW charger charger to a higher voltage level or something. I just sucked it up and bought it. Rather spend $70 on a new charger than be stranded with a dead battery or have to replace it early.

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Paul Mihalka

To charge the battery of any Can-bus type BMW bike through the original accessory socket: First you have to buy the correct special BMW charger, about $140.-, yes 140. Then different from the quote from A&S, you first plug the charger into the wall, then turn the ignition of the bike on, then plug the charger into the bike and turn the ignition off. If the battery is 100% dead, it won't work. Period. I do the process most every day in the BMW showroom where I work.

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It's always best ot keep the battery plugged in on the charger whenever you park it if possible.

 

I do not think this is necessary unless the bike is going to sit idle for several weeks or you ride for short distances routinely. I ride year-round, have never used a battery tender, and the alternator has always done a fine job of keeping the battery charge up.

 

Jay

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Jim VonBaden

Not to dis anyone's notions on what works and what doesn't. But I know dozens of people who ride regularly, at least once a week, and never use a tender, year round, in all temps.

 

I ride 110° to 10° and have never needed a tender in near 37K miles on my 12GS, and over 100K miles on various BMWs.

 

Jim cool.gif

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I thought that BMW's had massive charging systems? It would seem like connections and bad batteries would be far more likely the culprit for these types of issues. I have owned many bikes and often took lots of short trips but unless the battery wouldnt hold a charge never had a problem. (shrug)

 

JT

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