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2009 KLR650 Engine Noise.

12365 Views 9 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Markpupilla
I recently purchased a preowned 2009 KLR 650 that was well loved by the previous owner and seems to be in great shape. Oil change and had a service center go over the bike and they seem to think it is in great shape too. As I rode it home today
(over 150 miles.... what a great riding bike) I was able to hear what I can only describe as a light rattle sound as the bike began to move in first gear. The noise seem to go away at the top of first and at speed. Noise gets a little louder as bike begins to move in first gear and is less apparent at speed and moving through the other gears. Sounds a little like a chain could be lightly tapping against the case.

If the bike in neutral or in gear with the clutch in and the throttle is turned I do not hear the above noise. Only as the bike begins to move.

That being said if I get on my hands and knees beside the motor I hear a light tapping noise different in sound than the noise i describe above, at idle mostly apparent on the left side of the engine case. I do not hear this noise as the throttle is turned and the bike is in neutral, probably due to the increase in engine sound.

As I read though the forums I become more and more confused on this topic as some people say that these sounds are normal and not to worry, some say it is one thing and some say it is another. I have had lots of motorcycles over the year to include other single cylinder four strokes bikes, but I do not remember hearing these sounds with any of them.

The bike seems to run great other than that. it has 15500 miles on it and has not had the doohickey replaced.

Checked most bolts and they seem to be tight.

Oil change today 10w40

chain cleaned and adjusted today (i do not think that the noise is the chain hitting the swing arm because when I try to reproduce the sound you can start to hear it before the bike gets moving good).

I was wondering if anyone has dealt with a similar issue. Do you think that it is the doohickey? I have ordered one from EM and plan to replace it anyway.

Also is there anyone in SC that has done the doohickey replacement that would be willing to give a fellow KLR owner a hand? I have never been inside of an engine before and will have to that it to a Kawi dealer otherwise. I figure I will do the .22 mod at the same time.

Youtube video of sounds. Sorry but you will have to search my user ID on youtube due to having to few post here to put in a url. User ID is ESBUFF2005 and title is 2009 KLR650 "Engine Noise"......could this be a normal engine low RPM lugging sound?

THanks fro any help.

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Scott -

I don't know if there is an official name for it, but I call it the "KLR Sound". Sort of like the sound you associate with air-cooled VWs.

To me, it's normal.

The sounds you here on your hands and knees is likely valve train noise, again normal. Lose valves are happy valves. On the KRL they tighten up over time.

As to the doo, the worry on the Gen2 bikes is not the lever itself, but the spring. Most find the spring to be loose almost from day one. Probably wise to get in there and replace it.

What Tom said.

Did my '09 "doo" at 1244 miles and the spring although not loose, did
not have tension either. It was just there. There wasn't enough tension for one
adjustment or if so just barely. Maybe it's just the peace of mind with the doo done,
but all that clatter down south doesn't bother me one bit especially after riding with
other KLR's now. They whirr too. LOL

I keep clean oil in it, ride hard, and never give the engine another thought.
These things are very reliable.
Tks for the info guys....I appreciate you taking the time to check out the sound. I really just want to make sure that all is well with the new addition. I love it so far. I will keep an ear on it.

Know anyone in South Carolina other than a kawi dealer who can do the doo? I have never torn down a motor before.
I would recommend against a dealer and advocate for joining up with a tech day or another KLR owner.

The dealer will cost a lot and there is a likely chance that you'll have to un-honk something they honked up.

Let's see if we can find someone to help you out...

Tks Tom,

I agree about the dealer. Hopefully there is someone close that would be willing to help. I am willing to supply the beverages and anything else needed
My 2009 sounds a bit like rocks in a can when going slow. I think it's the same kind of sound you guys are describing. It's nothing like a twin - I had a v-strom and it purred like a kitten. But the KLR is a bit loose and noisy sounding - which I think is what Tom is calling the KLR sound.
Tks for the info guys....I appreciate you taking the time to check out the sound. I really just want to make sure that all is well with the new addition. I love it so far. I will keep an ear on it.

Know anyone in South Carolina other than a kawi dealer who can do the doo? I have never torn down a motor before.

Have you adjusted your doo? The balancer chain makes some noise and vibration when it has to much slack.

I most always ride with earplugs but when I don't wear them the engine noise is concerning. It's a fairly noisy motor to begin with and (like Tom said) when the valves are loose it makes even more noise!
The valves were adjusted per the 15k service recommendation. They were done around 14500 miles. Bike has about 15500 miles on it now. I attempted to adjust the doohickey spring and the lite at idle tap seems better.

Back to the valves should they be so loose that they make noise and wouldn't they make the noise even if the bike was in neutral and the throttle was opened? I would also think you would hear it all the time.

I have order EM's doohickey and I guess I will attempt to make the swap. If I cannot do it I can always take it to the shop. Pretty good directions and a video on YouTube.
I just updated thedo ohickey on my 2008. I Used eagle mikes parts There is a significant amount of reduction in engine noise. Great step by step instructions on left coast klrs.com. Thanks to eagle mike for his support . The tensioner adjustment bolt Was accidentally sheared off And eagle mike is sending me a new 1.. The eagle mike parts are superior to the stock parts....
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