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Is my battery on the way out? Is this normal?

Discussion in 'Technical and Troubleshooting Torque' started by RuKu, May 2, 2012.

  1. Hi all,

    Sometimes when I press the ignition switch, it takes several seconds for the engine to fire up. Sometimes it will take two seconds, occasionally it will start even faster. Once the thing does turn over, it starts up just fine every time. But that long silent time holding the button is a bit nerve wracking...

    Also, when I press the ignition switch, the headlight goes off for that time. Normal? I figure that a capacitor somewhere is drawing juice to make the ignition, and am then inferring that the delay in firing up is due to the battery's weakness. But I may be completely misunderstanding...

    1. I did search.
    2. I don't have a battery charger or multimeter yet. (soon...)
    3. I have a 1999 Honda CB250 - have had it for three months.
    4. The electrics and horn seem to work okay. The headlight seems a little dim, but I don't know if that is its regular brightness. I don't ride in the dark too often.

    Can anyone explain what is happening?
  2. the headlight will seem less
    Bright when you are not ridding the bike as there will only be around 12volts pressent however whilst you are riding you can be putting out closer to 14 volts which in turn increases the amount of light produced by your headlight.
  3. there are no capacitors
    sounds like a poor electrical connection.
    first thing to do is buy a small wire brush. pull both battery terminals off and give the battery posts and clamps a good scrub. then put it back together (duh!)

    might not fix the problem, but it's a good starting point
    • Like Like x 1
  4. check that the terminals are tight.
    Most bikes have a cutoff for the light when the ignition is pressed, not sure about the cb250.
    It's cold and the bike will take a little longer to start, especially if it is carbied.
  5. Thank you for the advice. I'm glad to be reassured that it probably is not the battery itself.

    I'll check the terminals, and take it on a freeway run soonish... just to be sure the battery is nice and charged. :D
  6. Add to the list...

    * check for tightness / clean terminals on the starter solenoid
    * check / clean contacts in the starter switch on the handlebar
  7. That sounds similiar to what happened with my bike recently. Turned out it was the Stator.
  8. Just tried and LizzyM's CB250 headlight definitely goes out when the starter turns.
  9. There is a solenoid that turns off the headlight when the starter is pushed in order to draw more current to the starter.
    Normal then.
  10. I am amazed they bothered. Judging from the dull orange glow that comes from the headlight I doubt that it draws any power.
  11. possible spark plugs need replacing?
  12. Ahhh, the thing IS very weak, it is good to know it is not just my bike.

    I live on an unlit winding road and I have to creep along it at night.
  13. Providing all your terminals etc are are clean and tight you should be ok.
    However, depending on the age of your battery starting in the cooler months can be an issue and show similar symptons.
  14. What is this dull orange glow of which you speak? On my first few bikes and several cars from my early career, I swear the headlamps were dark brown. You had to go round the front with a torch to make sure they were on and the beam curved downwards 'cos the photons had so little energy :D.
  15. Um, No
  16. Does sound like your battery is on its way out.. does your headlight get brighter on the throttle?
    Mine was doing this, gave it an overnight charge.

    BTW... battery chargers are must haves!
  17. Excellent restraint
    • Like Like x 2
  18. Be fair. When you ride a stroker, replacing the spark plug(s) is the default solution to everything :D.
  19. cb250 aint a stroker :)
  20. I must be out of date. I thought lemontree's ride was an RS125.

    As you were.