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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm a new owner of an 04 FJR1300. The bike overall is in excellent condition (24k miles) and runs perfectly. But twice now I've had an odd electrical problem and I hoping for some suggestions on what it might be or where to start looking.

When I go to start the bike, with the key ON, as soon as the starter button is depressed everything dies. The clock resets (to random times) and the trip odometer resets to 0. The starter doesn't even begin to turn over. I believe that the power only dies momentarily and by the time I've become aware of it, I believe that all power, lights, etc. are back ON. Sorry if I am a bit sketchy on the details...this has happened only twice in dozens of starts and the other time it happened it was at the hands of the dealer during my sticker inspection (not sure what he noticed but he told me "BTW your battery might be getting weak"). It fires up perfectly and instantly when the starter button is depressed again (not sure how he did it but when it happened to me I turned the key off and back on, just in case). All other times that I've started it, the engine has fired up instantly or near instantly (there has never been a drawn-out running of the starter).

So, is this simply a battery issue or something more? It seems more like a short to me, which is why I'm posting.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions!
 

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I also have an '04 FJR, ABS model. I can say I have had the same thing happen. More than once. However, I can't tell you what for it happens, nor the "fix". I've about 25k on mine and I keep it on a Battery Tender during its down times which have been longer here in NC than I really want.

Just a thought for full disclosure. I had a burglar alarm on mine, I was fond of it. In January '12 I was going to take it out for New Year's. Went to start it, it did, seemed strange. Also, in my haste I noted the Battery Team light was not green, but maybe orange-yellow, but really didn't register. So I get it started once in my storage position, again when on the driveway and away I went. Well, down the road, I shut it down, only to be greeted by a completely DEAD bike when I attempted a restart.

Long story short, turned out to be the burglar alarm had died in some shape or fashion electrically. I really don't think I've had the start issue you discuss since the burglar alarm was removed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Interesting. I have the ABS model as well. I'm playing with it now and tested the battery on a very simple (needle-type) voltmeter, and it reads at just under 13v. So it seems the battery is fine. I do have an aftermarket accessory plug for heated pants, gloves, etc. It has an inline 15v fuse and a dial (rheostat?) to adjust current. It was connected at the negative battery terminal but not at the positive (I presume the previous owner intended this). The positive-end of the wiring was just hanging in the open area next to the battery (well away from the battery). So anyhow I just disconnected the negative terminal as well, just in case (wiring is still there as it snakes along / under the tank to the accessory plug under the seat). Well, there's my update and we'll see what happens.
 

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First look for bad battery connections...........
 

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As you kniow, the resetting of the odometer etc. is simply a product of the voltage momentarily going below a set value and the RAM memory resetting.

Either the battery is weak enough to occasionally draw down to that low a voltage, or there is some short in your wiring or starter which brings it down that low.

First thing to do is take both battery connections off, clean them thoroughly and reinstall. If that doesn't work and since it's not my money, I would replace the battery with good quality new one and my bet is the problem goes away.

If it doesn't and the problem doesn't get worse over time, you live with it.

If it gets worse, it will prob. become apparent where the problem lies as the starter will start to drag badly or, as they say "it will let the smoke out". Philharmonic
 

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check your frame grounds also
 
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Interesting. I have the ABS model as well. I'm playing with it now and tested the battery on a very simple (needle-type) voltmeter, and it reads at just under 13v.
Borrow a better digital multimeter. With the motorcycle turned off, a charged battery should read at least 13.2 volts (2.2 volts per lead acid cell times 6 cells. With the engine running, you should read at least 13.5 volts. The charging system must generate more than the nominal 13.2 volts to charge the battery.
 

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If all the contacts are ok,then perhaps this caused from a faulty starter..A faulty starter needs much more amps that a normal needs.Clean and tighten all the terminals in the battery and in the relay,make your sure that the battery is really ok,because some faulty bateries show the normal volts but when you will try to start the bike the battery die..Happened to me this!After all these are ok,then the problem probably is in the starter with some small chances in the relay..My opinion...
 

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How old is that battery Niko? You know, just looking at the voltage across a battery is NOT going to tell you the whole story of its condition. A voltaic cell can show good voltage until under load, where all kinds of different things can happen such as cell shorting, or opening. If you have enough shorting going on in one or several cells, you will have a voltage drop..... which can be enough to cause the low voltage resetting you mentioned. As they discharge/charge cycle, they usually will be able to show 12+ volts, however, their current capabilities' begin to deteriorate.

So, I ask the age of the battery, thinking if it is over 4 or 5 years, I suggest buying a new one as Philharmonic suggested. You will need one reasonably soon anyway (I got 7 years out of my OEM), and they are not too expensive. I am betting the issue goes away with a new one...... if not, you are not out that much. And, even if it is not that old, it still can have issues...... especially if it lives on a charger all the time.

I wouldn't leave a battery on a battery tender all the time. If you are storing for a long time, just hook it up once every month or two to top it off, and unhook it. Even a floating/storage trickle charge is tough on a battery after a long time.

My $0.04 worth <grin>

Let us know your findings... Good luck.
 

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Had been having similar intermittent starting problems with my 01 last autumn. Even fitted new battery, but it started playing up again shortly after. That made me take a proper look at things, and found that both of the batteries and the charging system were actually ok.

To cut a long story short, what has prevented recurrence so far was to clean and lubricate with dielectric grease the battery earth cable at the bottom end where it's fixed to one of the engines sump bolts.
Although it's tucked away behind the headers, I imagine it still gets soaked when the roads are wet (and salty in winter here in the UK). When unbolted, the engine case alloy had a nice white layer of oxide on it, and the exposed end of the wire inside the crimped section of the terminal had a very 'dry' and dusty look to it. Soaked the wire with ACF-50, greased and reassembled it, and not had any problems so far.
 

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To cut a long story short, what has prevented recurrence so far was to clean and lubricate with dielectric grease the battery earth cable at the bottom end where it's fixed to one of the engines sump bolts.
Although it's tucked away behind the headers, I imagine it still gets soaked when the roads are wet (and salty in winter here in the UK). When unbolted, the engine case alloy had a nice white layer of oxide on it, and the exposed end of the wire inside the crimped section of the terminal had a very 'dry' and dusty look to it. Soaked the wire with ACF-50, greased and reassembled it, and not had any problems so far.
+ 1

Good first remedy.

Finnfjr
 

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Good stuff Marshman, I'm going to do that as preventative maintenance. Philharmonic
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks for all the suggestions to date. I rode the bike for much of the past 2 days, with lots of starts and stops. With probably around 2 dozen starts, it fired up perfectly every time. In fact, I'm still amazed how perfectly! Having always owned carburated bikes, every time I fire up the FJR I get a big grin and a desire to run around and hug everyone near me :D

Ahem, anyhow. I think I'll just hold tight and see if it happens again since I disconnected the accessory wiring circuit. Something about the negative end being connected to the battery and the positive end just dangling by the horn, I do wonder what it could have contacted and with what affect. I do plan to check the batter with a better meter. I'm not sure how old the battery is. The previous owner didn't buy it but he had the bike for only 1 season. If it does crop up again and the battery is good, I'll start with marshman's suggestion and go from there. The bike also does have an electronic cruise control, which I originally figured was factory but maybe is not (sorry I'm still very green to the FJR and have a lot to learn).

I'll update again, if for nothing other than to confirm what the problem was.

Thanks!
 

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Had been having similar intermittent starting problems with my 01 last autumn. Even fitted new battery, but it started playing up again shortly after. That made me take a proper look at things, and found that both of the batteries and the charging system were actually ok.

To cut a long story short, what has prevented recurrence so far was to clean and lubricate with dielectric grease the battery earth cable at the bottom end where it's fixed to one of the engines sump bolts.
Although it's tucked away behind the headers, I imagine it still gets soaked when the roads are wet (and salty in winter here in the UK). When unbolted, the engine case alloy had a nice white layer of oxide on it, and the exposed end of the wire inside the crimped section of the terminal had a very 'dry' and dusty look to it. Soaked the wire with ACF-50, greased and reassembled it, and not had any problems so far.
I'll be checking that MM thanks for the info.
 

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I have a different problem. When I start my bike (2011 fjr), the headlight doesn't come on, the windshield doesn't work and the turn signal indicators are lit. Checked the fuses....they're all good. Not sure what else to do. Maybe a relay??? Anyone else have this problem???
 

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I have a different problem. When I start my bike (2011 fjr), the headlight doesn't come on, the windshield doesn't work and the turn signal indicators are lit. Checked the fuses....they're all good. Not sure what else to do. Maybe a relay??? Anyone else have this problem???
Yep, you need to service your ground spiders...
 

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I have a different problem. When I start my bike (2011 fjr), the headlight doesn't come on, the windshield doesn't work and the turn signal indicators are lit. Checked the fuses....they're all good. Not sure what else to do. Maybe a relay??? Anyone else have this problem???
My 2012 fjr is having the Same Issues. What was the problem, and how did you fix it?
 

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Classic symptoms of ground spider bite....... check them out.
 
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My 2012 fjr is having the Same Issues. What was the problem, and how did you fix it?
Yep, classic signs of a spider bite!

 
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