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  #1  
Old 30 Dec 2010
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My BMW 1200GS won't start

I need your help! Got on my bike today and it won't start. Makes a click, click, click noise when I press the ignition but that is it. (Have checked kill switch.)

When I had the final drive oil changed last week they did say that the battery was getting a little flat. I haven't ridden it for just over a week and it has been raining a lot. I assume the battery is flat and I need to take the battery out and go to a garage and get it charged up.

Would that seem like a good first step?

Thamks

Dom
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  #2  
Old 30 Dec 2010
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Hey,

That's usually the first step yeah, certainly when the guy's told you that about the battery. When the voltage become under the 10.4 (around that) there is not enough power to get your fuel pump on the run.

Cheers
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  #3  
Old 30 Dec 2010
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Once a battery is that far gone it will not recover again.
You may get a start or two out of a recharge but that is all.
Buy a new battery.
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  #4  
Old 30 Dec 2010
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Dead battery

Hi Dom,

I had the same thing on my 1200 and it was indeed the battery. You might be able to nurse it a little while longer after you get it charged but you'll be needing to purchase a new one soon. I found the 1200 very difficult to bump start. OK, impossible really and we needed to get a boost.

I hope the rest of your trip is going well!
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'84 R100RT 141,000 km (Dad's!)
'89 R100GS 250,000 km (and ready for another continent)
'07 R1200GS Adventure 100,000 km (just finished Circumnavigating Asia)


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  #5  
Old 31 Dec 2010
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Thanks

I told a friend I was going to post this on a motorbike forum to get help and they looked at me as if I was mad. Who would help a complete stranger the day before new years eve?
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  #6  
Old 31 Dec 2010
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No start

Hi
I had exactly the same thing recently in Salta, Argentina. Lots of info here -

http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...742#post312565

Although mine turned out to be dirty contacts on the starter motor. Also posted on ADV link here -

ADVrider - View Single Post - Dead GS1200A

Lots of info for you. Hope it's as easy a fix as mine.
Currently stuck in Cochabamba, Bolivia with water in the fuel ..... again!!!! happened last year in Puerto Madryn, Argentina, anyone got a spare pre filter????
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  #7  
Old 31 Dec 2010
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Roll or Clutch starting, it's all in the technique...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ekke View Post
I found the 1200 very difficult to bump start. OK, impossible really and we needed to get a boost.
I don't agree with Ekke here.

I have on many occasions roll or clutch started my R1200GS. I have had a flat battery 4 times and each time I have roll started it. Hell, sometimes I'll just roll down a hill with my miss'us on the back and roll start it for fun (this happened a lot in Nepal and Thailand when I was on reserve tank of fuel and wanted to save petrol, so like the locals I would just roll in neutral downhill).

The trick is to have the bike in 3rd or even 4th gear, you need it in higher gear as the torque to the rear wheel is too high in lower gears and thus it has a tendancy to lock up and skid. The higher the gear, the easier it is to roll start. I can (after some practice) even run along side the 1200 (without luggage) and in 2nd and clutch start it on the flat. So I maintain that it is all in the technique.


I second the battery troubles but it's not worth buying a new battery straight away as the AGM gel batteries can sometimes have a new lease on life even once dead (<10V) as mine did.


Good luck
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Old 31 Dec 2010
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I guess I better do some practicing!

The only time I tried it was in a campground on a dusty road, in second gear. When the snow clears I'll try it at home in third nor fourth.
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Old 31 Dec 2010
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Before buying a new battery, try to charge it, one night or 24 hours with a battery charger.
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Old 31 Dec 2010
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I have one other question (I know nothing about electrics). Currently my bike is sat there with a dead battery. When I turn the ignition key it starts up, runs through its warm up process and the lights work so there must be some electricity from somewhere.

I am planning on getting a new battery on Thursday. Am I doing the bike any harm sitting there with a dead battery until Thursday? Should I take it out? When I go to get a new battery will I do the bike any harm if I take the old battery out (leaving the bike with no battery for 24 hours) as I go to get a new one? And finally, I assume (I do have a Haynes manual) that taking a battery out and putting one in is fairly simple ( as long as I disconnect and reconnect the terminals in the right order) Is there anything I'm missing?
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Old 31 Dec 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lonesome George View Post
I have one other question (I know nothing about electrics). Currently my bike is sat there with a dead battery. When I turn the ignition key it starts up, runs through its warm up process and the lights work so there must be some electricity from somewhere.

I am planning on getting a new battery on Thursday. Am I doing the bike any harm sitting there with a dead battery until Thursday? Should I take it out? When I go to get a new battery will I do the bike any harm if I take the old battery out (leaving the bike with no battery for 24 hours) as I go to get a new one? And finally, I assume (I do have a Haynes manual) that taking a battery out and putting one in is fairly simple ( as long as I disconnect and reconnect the terminals in the right order) Is there anything I'm missing?
This is a new symptom to what you mentioned. It could be more serious than the battery. I would hold out on the new battery because you may not need it if it is the starter for instance.

First charge the battery. Do this with any normal 12V battery charger (ie. for a car or other) BUT you must disconnect it from the bike, take it out completely to be safe. This is so as not to fry the ZFE (onboard computer) which has voltage controller, if you have a BMW charger that connects to the 12V socket then this will send a signal to the computer letting it know that a high Amp current is coming through to charge the batter and it won't destroy the computer.

Next once charged try the battery back in the bike.

If this doesn't work (and/or roll/clutch starting the bike doesn't start it then you have another issue.)

You could check contacts like gear sensor (difficult to get to), side stand switch and clutch switches in case of a dirty or bad connection.

After checking all those and the bike still doesn't start then there might be a problem with starter or FPC (Fuel Pump Controller). But I doubt this as the 'clicking' you hear is most probably the fuel pump.

Let us know how it goes. Meanwhile Happy New Year 2011
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  #12  
Old 31 Dec 2010
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if it's clikety-clikety-clik .... it's prob a goosed battery or loose battery connections-
If it's cranking but not firing, it's probably the FPC (again !)
good luck

Happy new year!
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  #13  
Old 31 Dec 2010
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The only noise it makes is the "click click" I mentioned. About two clicks a second whilst I'm pressing the ignition button. Sounds a bit like a spanner hitting something metal. Absolutely no other noise at all.
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Old 31 Dec 2010
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Starter Relay

The R1200GS has only one relay (everything else is CANBUS) and it is the starter relay under the seat. The clicking is in all likelihood the starter relay and the battery doesn't have enough juice to turn the starter motor. Once the battery is charged you'll probably be good for a while but if you can get a battery where your at then do it. Better now than being stuck out in the back of beyond having to practice push starting.
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'89 R100GS 250,000 km (and ready for another continent)
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Old 1 Jan 2011
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Good advice from Ekke .But before you get a new battery , check the terminals are CLEAN and the connections are TIGHT .Batteries at rest should show about 12.6 volts if they are in good condition .If ,after a long ride or some time on a charger, it cannot hold 12.6 volts ,it's time to replace it.
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