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Why doest bike start if not ridden every week

Discussion in 'Technical and Troubleshooting Torque' started by Tomcatalex, Feb 11, 2008.

  1. Is it the battery, and if the battery is not being used why the hell does it go flat, and why doesnt it go flat on the shop shelf????

  2. Yes it is the battery, (plus the fuel goes a bit stale and is harder to start).

    All batteries lose charge into the air (particularly moist air), through
    general degradation, and into any bike systems which are active
    (like immobilisers).

    They don't go flat on the shop shelves because they either aren't
    there long, the shop people charge them regularly, or they
    haven't had the acid installed yet.
  3. Change over to a "sealed" battery. They handle being left around more and crank harder for the same rating.
  4. How old is the battery?

    One way of checking if there is a drain is to hook an amp meter across the battery between the positive terminal and the lead that connects to it.

    With everything off there shouldn't be any drain, unless you have say, a clock of some sort. But even then it should take a poofteenth of the battery's capacity.

    Get the battery checked. Specific gravity check, make sure that it does have water in it, or a load test. Most tyre services will do this for free (and they're usually the cheapest places to buy batteries, anyway). Batteries in bikes rarely go beyond 5 years, so if it's getting on that's why it won't hold a charge when the bike's not in use.
  5. Just charged the battery over night, got a charge of 13.2 v dc
    next day went down to 12.3 v dc

    i havnt ridden over a week cause of the rain

    might get a new battery, sealed are better??? against moisture
  6. It's your bikes way of saying "RIDE ME MORE OFTEN!"

    If the battery is hooked up in the bike there will be some use as it uses the bike as a circuit.
  7. Eh? What circuit?
  8. Assuming that somewhere on the bike there is a leakage to earth. :grin:
  9. Sealed batteries are notorious for not being rechargable once they go flat. I found out the hard way.

    There's a guy on ebay who has fair priced batteries. The acid is in a oneshot dosing set up, which you dump into the battery then apply the seals. Voila!
  10. It's not the air.

    It's not even moisture in the air. Just think for a moment - if that was the case, every battery would go flat regularly because of "moisture in the air".

    Batteries, wet or dry, go flat because they lose charge internally, via impurities in whatever chemical reaction that takes place within them. The older the battery, the more it is likely to self-discharge (i.e. internally). When it gets cold lead acid batteries (the type mostly used in cars and bikes) can self discharge very quickly, in just a few days, if they are older.

    That is probably what is happening to the OP's battery - it is either old, or faulty if new. Batteries must be kept charged, otherwise the plates will sulphate (absorb a compound from the battery acid which eventually shorts out the cell).

    Unless, of course, there is some device attached which draws current when the bike is switched off, such as an alarm system.


    Trevor G
  11. That's normal.

    Sealed batteries are sealed to prevent evaporation of the electrolyte as the battery is used, especially as it heats up during charge and discharge.

    A sealed battery must be built to a higher standard to avoid cracking or bursting under the pressure which builds up.

    The best battery is the absorbed glass mat type (one brand is Odyssey) which are smaller, weigh less, are dry, and cost two or three times as much as ordinary batteries. People who use them swear by them.


    Trevor G
  12. You probably have CV carbs which have a hose connected to the fuel petcock. Fuel flows when the engine is turning over. When the bike sits for sometime the carby dries up. Takes a few engine revolutions to fill the carbs.
    Check your petcock of fuel tap. There are probably two hoses connected.
  13. It's sulking because you're neglecting it!
  14. If your battery goes flat on the bike after a week, you have a wiring problem.
    The GTR lives outside under a patio, and I can leave it for 2 weeks in a Canberra winter, put the fuel tap on prime for 15 seconds and it'll fire straight up from dead cold on a 0 degree morning.
    I bought a sealed golf buggy battery for my bike 12 months ago, it's great. The main advantage is no more checking electrolyte levels.
    Mind you, my bike is always in perfect tune....

    Regards, Andrew.
  15. Agree, or else a crap battery.

    Mind you, GTR's have a freakin huge battery and require not much power to start. Mine would start perfectly after 2-3 months (after a bit of cranking to pump in fresh petrol of course)

    Most bikes have batteries which are barely enough to start them under good circumstances, and so are more sensitive than GTRs, and are lucky to survive storage 4 weeks without a topup charge.
  16. Try a battery tender, although does sound like you may need a new batterty in the future if it's losing charge in a week.