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I am in San Juan which is about 80 k north of Mendoza Argentina I have a 2007 BMW GS 1200 and it is not running. At first I thought it was fuel with water in it. We drained the tank and took it off and flushed it out with alcohol so it was dry. We took off the fuel pump and check the mesh bag on the end of it. We filled two bikes with the same fuel pump and the other bike is running fine. We thought we had the problem fixed and took off and made it about 60 k north of San Juan and it did the same thing as before. We do not think it is fuel this time as the other bike was running fine. We think it is the fuel pump as it runs fine at times and you can go for 2 or 3 miles and then it kills again. It does not backfire or anything. It just kills. You let it stand and it seems to run for a bit. You might make it 30 feet or 1 mile before it kills again. We have tried leaving the gas tank open and it does not help. We took the tank off and flushed it out so I know that there is not water in it from before but we did have some in it before. We could see it going out of the hose we used. We find it hard to believe that it could be bad gas from two different towns and two different pumps. And the fact that two bikes were filled with it at the same time and one is having the problem. The last time we had the trouble we each used a different grade of gas. He used 95 and I used 97 and I had the problem. This time we both used 97 but he has not had problem at all. What I need to know is is there a BMW dealer in Mendoza as I have limited internet to search. The other bike has gone on now so I am alone with my wife. We are back in San Juan drinking so life is not totally bad. I have someone lined up to haul my bike to Mendoza but not sure if there is a BMW place there that can diagnose the problem and get me parts to go. It really sucks to not trust it. Today it ran fine for 60 k and then just started doing the same thing again. grrrrrrrrrrrrrr any help would sure be appreciated.
It may not be the same problem but there was a recall in 2005 for the fuel pump where the "O" ring that seals the electric motor was letting in water.
The corrective action was to replace the "O" ring but if the motor was corroded then the full fuel pump was replaced.
The symptoms were engine cutting out or not starting.
Hope this helps.
Thanks Dave and Ivan for your input on this. I have just arrived with the bike in Mendoza and have it on a trailer. Someone is coming back for me in the morning and then we will try to find a place to get it worked on. Thanks again. Larry
May be the wires to the pump are lose or corroded check the spark plugs check the air box and filter. Check to see the throtal bodies are tight and not letting in air. Check the oil full and no metal shavings and get it changed while its in the shop.
If its not any of that hope its gust a bad fuel pump.
Well We pulled the pump out of the gas tank when we had the tank off the bike. It takes a special wrench to get the locking ring off but we did it with 3 of us. Two were holding down the clips and I was hitting on the ring tabs with a socket wrench and a 1/4 inch socket driver. We were very careful not to hurt the seals and it comes out pretty easy once you have seen it out. On the bottom of the pump there is a mesh bag that is a filter to keep out the big chunks of crap that might be floating in bad fuel. It does not seem to be able to filter out water but with the pressure of the injection pump it should force bad gas though the injectors as long as there are no chunks that can plug the holes. We think it might be the distrubution can which is black and has I think 4 hoses going into it. That could collect water as it is sealed and the hoses are heat shrunk onto it. They are high pressure hoses so we did not take them off. My friend Paul made it to La Serina today with his bike and he had same fuel as I did yesterday from same pump. So now at least we feel we have a fuel pump problem or a filter. We took off all the electrical connections to get the pump out of the tank. There are two on top of the pump going into the tank and one sending unit inside the tank for the fuel level. This is a 2007 bike with only 12,000 miles on it and they all looked like new. I was impressed at the quality of the things. The pump is mounted with like 3 or 4 rubber mounts inside the tank and seems to be a sealed unit so we did not take it apart. We did take off the top of the pump unit but it was just a electrical connection there so did not seem to be any problem. The bike has been in a garage pretty much all of its life. So does not show any corrosion on it anywhere, Thanks to everyone and hope to get it all sorted out tomorrow. Larry
There is a BMW dealer in Mendoza - sells cars and bikes - just east of Av. Colon and Av. San Martin I believe.
There's quite a few Mendoza area locals that own 1200GS bikes there as well; Mendoza BMW has experienced mechanics and know how to use their diagnostic computer if necessary. (they only work on the newer bikes)
There's also several independent BMW mechanics in Mendoza (see the related HUBB sections/do a query on Mendoza). These guys work on all the older bikes. But they all have to go through Mendoza BMW for BMW OEM parts.
Mendoza BMW is able to get some things from the BA dealer. Unfortunately, it doesn't matter where in south america you are - if you need parts, other than ordinary consumable items, they most likely will have to be ordered from Germany.
We think it is the fuel pump as it runs fine at times and you can go for 2 or 3 miles and then it kills again.
Have you eliminated other causes? !!!!
Do you have spark when the bike stops? If no spark - I'd suspect the Hall Effect Switches - try removing the front engine cover and throwing some cold water on them .. if the bike then runs (the cold water cools the hall effect switches and they work .. until they get hot .. this works for a while) you have your fault identified.
Even from the sounds of the description .. it sound more like a blocked filter than a faulty pump? .. does it run further with a full tank of fuel (before stopping).. the more fuel = more cooling of the gas ..
Thanks to all that offered help. The problem turned out to be a known to BMW problem that they have chosen not to send out a alert to anyone on. It is the electric switch that turns the pump on and off. It seems if it gets wet it corrodes and will stop working. The fix is to replace it with a new one that the dealer in Mendoza did not have. They did know about the problem and how to by- pass the switch. I talked to Danial Novaco the sales manager I think he is. He spoke very good english so they took me direct to him. He was very confident that that was the problem and I have ridden it about 550 miles now and not a bit of probelm. It sure is great to be back on the road and know that the problem is not going to be back. I can not believe that BMW has known about this problem and has not had a recall on it. When you buy the best bike that you can that is supposed to be built for world travel and it has a $10 part that is known to stop the bike dead in the water I can not believe that they did not recall it. When it stopped it stopped dead and you could be killed by cars behind you. I am certainly going to be following up with them when I return to the USA as I spent $640 dollars getting the biked hauled 3 times and spent about 5 hours tearing the gas tank and fuel pump off and dumping the fuel 3 times to try to get it going out in the middle of no where. All three times that I had to get it hauled could have been life threatening because of the time and the area. I think I ended up hauling the bike close to 400 miles total. Oh well we live and learn. Again thanks for you help.
I have heard about this problem a few times: it is commonly discussed within the BMW owning/riding fraternity in the UK.
IIRC, it is an issue with the item collecting water on the top of the unit in question: water "ponds" there i.e. it does not drain away, leading to corrosion.
I recall various 1200GS owners having this fail and getting it replaced under warranty cover - yours' has the 3 year USA cover I presume - in the UK the warranty is for just 2 years, but the unit has failed well inside this time.
I have also been told that the unit has been re-designed in some way to keep the top dry: I don't know any detail - I wasn't listening to all of the moans and groans of the 1200 guys!!
Well The unit I think is the part on the left side of the gas tank on top. The piece is held on by two small screws and I can see where water would pond on top of that unit as there is no way for water to get out of it. If you build a depression on top of the tank you should not need a engineering degree to know that it will get wet. As far as how they by pass it I do not know as I do not speak Spanish and did not get to talk to the mechanic. The service writer that I talked when I checked the bike in went back and asked the guy and then we went back to the sales office and talked to Danial who told me in english but he did not know just how they bypassed it. I am sure this problem has come up in BMW forums as it is a engineering mistake that they should have fixed long before they stranded me out in the middle of no where. We had pulled this unit off but it just had the electrical connection down below that attaches right to the fuel pump. We checked the connection and it was prefect as the sending unit is like a sealed unit. Sorry I could not tell you more from South America with limited email connections. Larry
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