Electrical Purgatory - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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  • 2 Post By Tom Schmitz
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post #1 of 7 Old 04-21-2019, 04:18 PM Thread Starter
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Electrical Purgatory

This site has helped me a lot, so it's time to join. I have a real mystery. If anyone can help, I'd be so appreciative. I love working on bikes, but this has stumped me. I almost never do electrical work...

Last fall, my 2008 KLR was running fine until it sat for about 2 weeks (under cover). I turned the key, and no power.
So, I charged the battery. I then had power, but when I pushed the starter, just a click and no power. It was fall and chilly, so I stored it under shelter.

This spring I had absolutely no power at all. The battery tested at 12.6 volts. I replace the starter relay and starter circuit relay (after doing some testing). I have power back now. When the system is charging up (just turned on the key), the battery tests at about 3.5 volts. Once power up, 12.6 volts or so. Seems good.
When I apply any draw (horn, turn lights, ignition), I lose all power immediately. When I push the starter, there is a click.
Battery again tests at about 12.6 volts.
I get power back again if I turn the key off, then back on, then wait somewhere between 30 second and 1 minute. I can repeat the process.

Maybe a useless point. I use a battery tender junior and lately it has been flashing green more often (indicating the battery is at about 80% charge). However, the battery is testing fine (I think).
Another side note, the wires are all wrapped up, so this bike went in for the wiring recall. I am the third owner and I've had it for about 3 years.

Sorry that was so long. Please do help. I am stumped.

Last edited by Lucky Penny; 04-22-2019 at 10:16 AM.
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post #2 of 7 Old 04-21-2019, 07:01 PM
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You have a dead battery. Replace it.

You may have a loose connection at the battery terminals.

It may be low on electrolyte in one or more cells. You could try adding water, but...

“It’s dead, Jim.”
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ďNeither of the two people in the room paid any attention to the way I came in, although only one of them was dead.Ē -Philip Marlowe

ď'Why' and 'How' are words so important they cannot be too often used.Ē -Napoleon Bonaparte


Sting like a butterfly.

Last edited by Tom Schmitz; 04-21-2019 at 07:07 PM.
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post #3 of 7 Old 04-21-2019, 09:57 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, Tom. I have a feeling I was dealing with two problems wrapped in one. I was thinking now maybe the battery. Itís on order.
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post #4 of 7 Old 04-22-2019, 10:05 AM
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I'll also suggest that you definitely have an all but DEAD battery. Do you not have a set of motorcycle sized jumper cables, 8 gauge cables & clamps? One can jump from another bike, tractor, car or just a spare battery.

Your battery is like a water tower, but your water tower only has a gallon of 'juice'. Volts is the pressure, amps is the juice. Your lights are consuming what little juice is in the tower & there is not enough left to power the horn, much less the starter motor. Sort of like someone flushing the downstairs toilet when you are using the upstairs shower, when there is already Low pressure in the system.

Battery Tenders & similar brands are great at maintaining Good Batteries. But they are POOR battery chargers. They drop into storage mode of 12.8-13.4V TOO Soon to recharge any marginal batteries, so the marginal battery Never gets Re-covered. Sort of like having too small of water pump feeding the tower.
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post #5 of 7 Old 04-22-2019, 10:18 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks! Great description! No cables around, but a new battery is on order now. I didnít know about the battery tender. Now I have a car charger thatís too strong and a tender thatís a little weak😏
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post #6 of 7 Old 04-25-2019, 12:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Lucky Penny View Post
Thanks! Great description! No cables around, but a new battery is on order now. I didnít know about the battery tender. Now I have a car charger thatís too strong and a tender thatís a little weak😏
With 14 or 12 gauge wire one can build test leads with 4 clips, as long as needed.

Connect the automotive charger (6, 8 or 10 amp?) to an automotive battery & use the newly built test leads to connect to the bike battery, this will allow one to recharge both batteries simultaneously & reduce/cushion the amperes going into the motorcycle battery.

Just keep your polarity straight, + to + to + / - to - to - , (parallel wiring)

pdwestman
Modify at "YOUR OWN RISK"!

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post #7 of 7 Old 05-19-2019, 03:56 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you to everybody who helped out! My bike is alive again! She started so quickly and powerfully compared to the last year or two that I think the electrical system was wearing out. The new battery was the last touch. Have a great riding season everyone!
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