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Discussion Starter #1
I ran a search through several posts and found similar issues, but not one quite like mine, so forgive me if this has already been discussed.

Some background - I was riding around the area for roughly half an hour when the bike begins to feel like it's losing power when I apply the throttle. I pull into a neighborhood to try to diagnose the problem and the engine dies. When I try to restart, the engine cranks and will idle, but dies as soon as I touch the throttle. Not cool. I start the bike, adjust the choke (even though the bike was warmed up) and let it idle for a minute or two. Still can't touch the throttle without it dying. I start the engine with full choke and I'm able to slowly let the clutch out to get it rolling, apply the throttle, and push the choke in...bike seems to run fine afterwards.

Two days later - I try to start the bike and it cranks just fine, and I let it sit in the driveway for a minute or two while I finish putting on my gear. It seems to be dropping RPMs, so I adjust the choke accordingly. Eventually the bike dies, even with full choke. I try to fire the engine and all I get is a continuous buzzing/clicking noise and the engine never attempts to start. I let it sit for a few minutes, still no luck. It does not appear to be the battery, as the bike previously started just fine before it died.

I removed the seat to take a picture of what appears to be making the buzzing/clicking noise. I haven't owned the bike for too long, so I'm not familiar with it, nor do I have a shop manual. Any suggestions about what my next troubleshooting steps should be? Thanks!

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Yes, your tank vent is plugged. It's in the filler cap. This prevents air from entering the tank to replace the used fuel resulting in a vacuum strong enough to overcome the weight of the fuel in the gas line. After a while this vacuum dissipates and your fine again till enough fuel is used to do it again. This will happen faster with a full tank than a almost empty one, as the volume of air is greater in the empty tank and it takes a greater amount of fuel to be used before a Vacuum of equivalent weight is used.
Everytime you open the cap you release this vacuum and your good again.

Take the cap apart and clean it. The vent is a labyrinth of plates designed to let air in but restrict fuel out.

FOG
 

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I have the same exact problem....i hear a clicking noise coming from the starter relay. I am not exactly sure how to fix the problem, i dont exactly see how cleaning out the cap will fix the problem.

I have a 2002 California model. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if you can blow air in and out through the vent hose on the bottom of the gas tank (near where the battery is), then you don't have a clog! I have also tried starting the bike without the gas tank closed, and it makes the same clicking noise. Could this problem be something else?
 

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surge2k said:
I have the same exact problem....i hear a clicking noise coming from the starter relay. I am not exactly sure how to fix the problem, i dont exactly see how cleaning out the cap will fix the problem.

I have a 2002 California model. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if you can blow air in and out through the vent hose on the bottom of the gas tank, then you don't have a clog! I have also tried starting the bike without the gas tank closed, and it makes the same clicking noise. Could this problem be something else?
You have a completly diffrent problem, it's called a dead battery.

FOG
 

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Could i have possible killed the battery by trying to jump start the bike with a car battery (from a Honda Accord)? The tail-lights turn on and the turn signals work fine. Why would the starter relay make the noise like that if the battery was dead? Doesnt make any sense to me.
 

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im not really sure... how old is your battery?

also, did you have the car running? FYI, when you jump your bike, leave the car off. long story short, your bike's voltage regulator wants to keep the bike at like 14.1 or something while running... your car is at more like 14.5 or so... it becomes a tug of war, and the bike's regulator will ALWAYS lose.

your car battery will have more than enough power to jump the bike without having the engine running...

im just grasping at straw here, but maybe one of your safety switches is bad, like the sidestand switch or clutch switch.

every now and again my bike wont want to start and it just clicks... but if i put it in first, rock it a bit with the clutch out, and then try to start it with the clutch engaged, it usually fires right up.
 

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I tried what you said DK, moved the bike around a bit, fooled around with the kickstand and center-stand. The starter is kind of half-working. The other half of the time the starter relay is clicking. Seems like some sort of sensor, just not sure which.

How many different sensors make the starter relay do that?
 

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surge2k said:
I have the same exact problem....i hear a clicking noise coming from the starter relay. I am not exactly sure how to fix the problem, i dont exactly see how cleaning out the cap will fix the problem.

I have a 2002 California model. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if you can blow air in and out through the vent hose on the bottom of the gas tank, then you don't have a clog! I have also tried starting the bike without the gas tank closed, and it makes the same clicking noise. Could this problem be something else?
+1 to fog, new battery time.

cleaning the cap will fix the OP's problem, because the cap is where the vent is. that hose you describe at the ass end of the tank, is not a vent hose, but a drain hose for the area around the cap where you fill up. if you spill some gas or get some water in there, it drains out the back rather than sitting in there and rusting. if you stick your finger in the hole, and reach back a little bit, you can feel the tube.
 

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surge2k said:
I tried what you said DK, moved the bike around a bit, fooled around with the kickstand and center-stand. The starter is kind of half-working. The other half of the time the starter relay is clicking. Seems like some sort of sensor, just not sure which.

How many different sensors make the starter relay do that?
i forget off the top of my head. although i think this problem was discussed on here a few months ago... maybe someone else can remember better... im sure FOG can tell you...

i THINK you check your neutral switch first, then the clutch switch and then the kickstand switch.

im pretty sure those are the only 3 lockout switches...
 

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Hmmm well it could be the neutral switch, but you can start the bike when its in any gear, you just have to have the clutch in! Also, you can start the bike with the kickstand down, so its not there either. I guess that narrows it down to

-dead battery (we will find out after i charge it over night @ 2amps)
-center stand switch (if there is one)
-some other possible scenario.
 

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there is no center stand switch.



wait for the battery to charge and see what happens.

but from what you posted, it sounds like it DIDNT crank when you jumped it, correct?

that kind of makes me think that its "some other possible scenario". maybe the relay itself is bad.
 

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id also double check all your connections, at the battery and at the starter relay. make sure everything is clean and tight.

its also a possibility that your starter could have siezed up... you could rap on it with the handle of a screwdriver a few times, and see if that helps... i used to have to do that every now and again in my 350 S-10... sometimes it would just click... id crawl under, whack the starter once or twice and then it would fire up. :)
 

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Okay, well here is the best way i can explain what is happening:

When the bike is just sitting there and I am trying to start it, i get the clicking sound from the relay. Now, if I take the bike off its side stand and move it around a little bit and hit the start button, i can hear the actual STARTER trying to crank the bike, and it almost does, but all of a sudden it will stop and the relay will start clicking again.

Hope thats a good enough explanation. I really don't think its the battery, but you never know!
 

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hmm. yeah that leads me to think that its NOT the battery.

maybe your relay itself is bad, or the starter is stuck.
 

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Ok, your starting to make a little sense. Now it sounds like your battery connections, Take them apart and clean them then re tighten them check the end of the ground strap that connects to the frame. Check means take it apart and clean it then redo it.

FOG
 

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The positive terminal on the battery did look a little rusted...ill do what you said and get back to you.

I am wondering if the relay makes that clicking sound enough times that you can break it?
 
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