Author Topic: Help!! Very hard starting when cold  (Read 2462 times)

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Offline JD

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Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« on: April 13, 2017, 06:27:52 pm »
Hey guys, I desperately need your help!!

Bought a 2012, with 7K km on it. I love the bike. Ever since I got it, starting it was a pain in the neck.

I figured the battery was crap. Bought a brand new one, charged it for a full day to make sure it was topped up (is a yuasa battery topped up when i installed it on the bike and the voltage meter in the bike reads 12.3? I figured that was low).

I try starting it, still no luck. The starter motor is cranking, but nothing happens. Had to crank it like 6 times, and give it some throttle for it to start. Once it starts, it runs pretty smooth, idles at abut 1300 rpms.

Funny thing is, if i shut it off when warm and turn it back on, engine turns on in a heartbeat!

What is the issue here? The connectors to the ground seemed very clean, no rust or anything. Once the bike is running, it reads anywhere between 13.5 to 14.5Volts.

What do I do now? it's driving me crazy!  >:(

Please help!!  :??:
Best,

JD

--Harley Davidson is king when it comes to turning gas into smoke, without the outcome of power--

Offline jwh20

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2017, 06:48:29 pm »
First, check the battery cable connections especially the ground leads where they connect to the frame.  These get invisible corrosion that can make the bike difficult to start.  The starter will turn since it's not very voltage sensitive but the electronics will have trouble.

If that checks out, my next thought is the fuel filter.  It's inside the fuel tank and the fuel pump but it can be replaced.  It get clogged up with dirt from bad gas.  There is another thread on this board on how to change it out.  It's not all that difficult and a new filter is about $15 or so.
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Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2017, 07:30:43 pm »
Fuel filter on a bike with 4200 miles on it?

I doubt it....

Remove all the cables and sand them all, also the frame ground contact areas...

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Offline Nighthawk

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2017, 09:03:32 pm »
3 things start every combustion type motor out there. Fuel, air, and spark.

How's the fuel delivery?

Fuel pump, fuel lines etc. If it's good then move on.

Check the vacuum lines on the evap system. If that's all good then move on.

Check the grounds on the bike. Battery grounds are a real little gremlin for the c14. Make sure the cable connections are nice and snug. With just over 4000 miles its more of a 'might as well check' kind of thing but, check the plugs and wires too if you have to.

Most of this stuff is just a visual check. If it looks funky or not right then look into it further.

If ALL those check out then you may have to get a dealer to check out the ECU to see what's happening.

**BTW just how "cold" are we talking here?

Offline JD

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2017, 09:21:25 pm »
3 things start every combustion type motor out there. Fuel, air, and spark.

How's the fuel delivery?

Fuel pump, fuel lines etc. If it's good then move on.

Check the vacuum lines on the evap system. If that's all good then move on.

Check the grounds on the bike. Battery grounds are a real little gremlin for the c14. Make sure the cable connections are nice and snug. With just over 4000 miles its more of a 'might as well check' kind of thing but, check the plugs and wires too if you have to.

Most of this stuff is just a visual check. If it looks funky or not right then look into it further.

If ALL those check out then you may have to get a dealer to check out the ECU to see what's happening.

**BTW just how "cold" are we talking here?

Thanks for your responses guys!!
Battery grounds: Look very clean, but I will still remove, clean them with the rotation wire thing.

Fuel pump: if it would be the issue, how do I check it? When the bike is running, it runs extremely well. It is only the starting that is a pain in the a**.
What is the normal voltage for the battery to start it up?

Cold as in a 20C degree (roughly 71F), and haven't turned it on today.

I'll check the fuel filter thread...
Best,

JD

--Harley Davidson is king when it comes to turning gas into smoke, without the outcome of power--

Offline Nighthawk

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2017, 09:54:23 pm »
3 things start every combustion type motor out there. Fuel, air, and spark.

How's the fuel delivery?

Fuel pump, fuel lines etc. If it's good then move on.

Check the vacuum lines on the evap system. If that's all good then move on.

Check the grounds on the bike. Battery grounds are a real little gremlin for the c14. Make sure the cable connections are nice and snug. With just over 4000 miles its more of a 'might as well check' kind of thing but, check the plugs and wires too if you have to.

Most of this stuff is just a visual check. If it looks funky or not right then look into it further.

If ALL those check out then you may have to get a dealer to check out the ECU to see what's happening.

**BTW just how "cold" are we talking here?

Thanks for your responses guys!!
Battery grounds: Look very clean, but I will still remove, clean them with the rotation wire thing.

Fuel pump: if it would be the issue, how do I check it? When the bike is running, it runs extremely well. It is only the starting that is a pain in the a**.
What is the normal voltage for the battery to start it up?

Cold as in a 20C degree (roughly 71F), and haven't turned it on today.

I'll check the fuel filter thread...

71 degrees isn't cold. That's actually a pretty normal temp. I don't think we can worry about it being too cold with that temp.

If the bike runs and rides fine once it has started then the fuel pump or fuel delivery probably isn't the culprit. That also eliminates any evap or air delivery issues as well.

Seems like spark or power delivery may be your issue.

What can you tell us about the ECU? Has it been Flashed or is a Power Commander add-on installed? To check this stuff pop off the seat and take a look at the ECU. If it has a manufacturer sticker on it from anything other than Kawasaki then it has a flash. I don't know where a power commander would be installed since I avoid those like the plague but, it usually isn't too far away from the ecu and looks like another mini ECU and should have the Power Commander logo on it.

checking and cleaning the grounds and battery connections will be a good start.

Oh, and the normal battery voltage under load shouldn't go below 11 volts basically. While running it should probably be around 14.5 volts or so and while the bike is off or 'resting voltage' it should be about 12 volts or so.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2017, 10:17:42 pm by Nighthawk »

Offline JTX

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #6 on: April 13, 2017, 10:31:01 pm »
Hey guys, I desperately need your help!!

Bought a 2012, with 7K km on it. I love the bike. Ever since I got it, starting it was a pain in the neck.

I figured the battery was crap. Bought a brand new one, charged it for a full day to make sure it was topped up (is a yuasa battery topped up when i installed it on the bike and the voltage meter in the bike reads 12.3? I figured that was low).

I try starting it, still no luck. The starter motor is cranking, but nothing happens. Had to crank it like 6 times, and give it some throttle for it to start. Once it starts, it runs pretty smooth, idles at abut 1300 rpms.

Funny thing is, if i shut it off when warm and turn it back on, engine turns on in a heartbeat!

What is the issue here? The connectors to the ground seemed very clean, no rust or anything. Once the bike is running, it reads anywhere between 13.5 to 14.5Volts.

What do I do now? it's driving me crazy!  >:(

Please help!!  :??:


I think the idle is too high, personally.


I'm pretty sure mine idles around 1k or less when its at normal temp. But I would have to look again to confirm.


Seems like a fuel delivery problem if its cranking at normal speed and it takes along time to start.

Offline Kman

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #7 on: April 13, 2017, 10:48:30 pm »
+1 on Nighthawk's suggestion to test voltage drop under load.  This seems like the most likely culprit given the information we have. 

However, given the age of the bike and the low mileage,  my other thought is bad fuel especially if the bike was not used for long periods and left sitting with untreated E10 gas. 

It's very unlikely anything to do with the ECU if it runs well once started. 
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Offline Old Man on a Connie

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #8 on: April 13, 2017, 11:26:18 pm »
The cold start hard hot start easy has me thinking. Now don't be a hater. It happened on my diesel truck. Do you know what weight oil is in there? If the PO put a heavy straight weight oil in there ??????????? But I would agree 71 deg ain't cold. Just spit ballin'.
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Offline JTX

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #9 on: April 13, 2017, 11:46:10 pm »
Is the motor actually turning over in a normal RPM ?

Offline Zarticus

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2017, 12:00:04 am »
It does not matter that the battery & ground connections "look clean", Take them off & clean them !, Every time someone post about a starting problem & they replace the battery & that does not fix it it ends up being the grounds that go to the frame !!!!
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Offline Claude aka MotorcycleClaude

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #11 on: April 14, 2017, 12:24:12 am »
Hi All,

I find that the battery voltage seems low for a new battery.  Anything close to 12v is going to cause problems.  When I charge my battery over the winter, the battery stays in in the higher 12v even after a few days after I charged it.

The battery won't charge in the bike when idling.

Claude

Offline Bud

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #12 on: April 14, 2017, 12:24:42 am »
Listen closely to the guys that are telling you to not rely on the looks of the grounds.  They all know what they're talking about.  Nudge nudge.   ;)

Offline Nighthawk

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #13 on: April 14, 2017, 12:31:16 am »
Hi All,

I find that the battery voltage seems low for a new battery.  Anything close to 12v is going to cause problems.  When I charge my battery over the winter, the battery stays in in the higher 12v even after a few days after I charged it.

The battery won't charge in the bike when idling.

Claude

The battery is always receiving a charge from the alternator any time the bike is running. This is the same with all 12v vehicle systems.

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Offline jwh20

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #15 on: April 14, 2017, 01:18:38 am »
Listen closely to the guys that are telling you to not rely on the looks of the grounds.  They all know what they're talking about.  Nudge nudge.   ;)

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Offline Zarticus

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #16 on: April 14, 2017, 01:36:15 am »
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AGrvQ1c5khU


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Offline Steve in Sunny Fla

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #17 on: April 14, 2017, 01:37:21 am »
grounds and old gas. Steve
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Offline JD

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #18 on: April 14, 2017, 04:00:22 pm »
I looked at all your suggestions.
Thank you all.
Gas is fresh (second full tank since i bought it).
Oil is motul 5100 10w40 changed yesterday.
Battery brand new, left on charger all night, had 12.7V when i went to start it.
Ecu is original, no re flashing.
Yesterday i polished with metal wool the ground connector, so no oxide there.
Here's a video. It usually takes much more than just 2 tries.
Thoughts guys?

https://youtu.be/Nnj16Gpq968
Best,

JD

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Offline mattchewn

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #19 on: April 14, 2017, 04:12:47 pm »
1st that wasn't the Fueling ECU that is the KiPass ECU.
Behind the toolbox and under the relay module is the fuel injection ECU.
Just a guess here but maybe you have some crud causing the injectors to leak off some of the fuel pressure.
Your idle seems a tad low. You should be at about 1100 RPM when the engine is at normal temp.
I would try a good fuel system cleaner since it is a cheap test and see if the symptoms improve. BG 44K is about the best there is for this job. @25$ for a can of it.
Battery charge level and cranking sound fine.
Check your air filter for crud/ blockage?

Note: to me it sounds like the fuel pump was not reaching full pressure and was running for a extended time frame. Possibly there is an issue with the regulator or the in-tank filter.
Matt
BG44K will also clean a lot of trash out of the filter so once again I would try that FIRST.
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Offline MAN OF BLUES

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #20 on: April 14, 2017, 07:38:02 pm »
Frankly after watching that video... I can't see anything extremely wrong, or problematic...
Seeing as this is the second tank of fuel you have, since purchasing the bike, I highly suggest starting it, twisting the idle knob a twitch to make it idle around 1150 rpm.... and spend a couple days burning some fuel for criminy sakes... ride the thing... put some miles on it... quite starting it and idleing it and shutting it off...


Sheeeesh...
Two tanks of fuel... really....? Like 500 miles or less on the bike with you riding it?

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Offline Nighthawk

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #21 on: April 14, 2017, 08:05:50 pm »
MMk.

I'm going to ask what seems like a silly question at this point but, after going back and re-reading the rest of this thread I realize this has been specified.

How many days do you go until you try to start it again? Do you start it everyday or do you wait a day or two?

I'm with MOB on this. That video didn't really show anything wrong. Other than having to crank it once more I think we have all done that at least a couple of times with our C14s.

Offline JD

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #22 on: April 14, 2017, 08:09:14 pm »
Frankly after watching that video... I can't see anything extremely wrong, or problematic...
Seeing as this is the second tank of fuel you have, since purchasing the bike, I highly suggest starting it, twisting the idle knob a twitch to make it idle around 1150 rpm.... and spend a couple days burning some fuel for criminy sakes... ride the thing... put some miles on it... quite starting it and idleing it and shutting it off...


Sheeeesh...
Two tanks of fuel... really....? Like 500 miles or less on the bike with you riding it?

 :-[ :-[ :-[ :-X :o ::) :-X :truce:
As much as i appreciate your input and "advice", it's not very accurate. I have ridden the thing since i bought it a week ago; the reason i don't put more miles to it it's because I'm not sure it will start next time i shut it off, and leave me stranded in the middle of nowhere.

I just got back from putting 70 miles on it, and while it rode beautifully, i found another gremlin, which may help those electricity savvy help me further.
I wanted to have my iphone charged just in case; when i plugged into the aux port, i realized it didn't work.

When i got back, i pulled the seat and looked at the fuse; it was blown. I exchanged it with the spare 5amp one, and guess what? As soon as i turn the knob (didn't start it) it blew that one too. It seems there is a short somewhere.

Could this and the hard starting issue be related!?

As you can imagine, I'm a bit disappointed about these issues, having just purchased it.

Appreciate all of your inputs!
Best,

JD

--Harley Davidson is king when it comes to turning gas into smoke, without the outcome of power--

Offline Nighthawk

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #23 on: April 14, 2017, 08:12:43 pm »
Frankly after watching that video... I can't see anything extremely wrong, or problematic...
Seeing as this is the second tank of fuel you have, since purchasing the bike, I highly suggest starting it, twisting the idle knob a twitch to make it idle around 1150 rpm.... and spend a couple days burning some fuel for criminy sakes... ride the thing... put some miles on it... quite starting it and idleing it and shutting it off...


Sheeeesh...
Two tanks of fuel... really....? Like 500 miles or less on the bike with you riding it?

 :-[ :-[ :-[ :-X :o ::) :-X :truce:
As much as i appreciate your input and "advice", it's not very accurate. I have ridden the thing since i bought it a week ago; the reason i don't put more miles to it it's because I'm not sure it will start next time i shut it off, and leave me stranded in the middle of nowhere.

I just got back from putting 70 miles on it, and while it rode beautifully, i found another gremlin, which may help those electricity savvy help me further.
I wanted to have my iphone charged just in case; when i plugged into the aux port, i realized it didn't work.

When i got back, i pulled the seat and looked at the fuse; it was blown. I exchanged it with the spare 5amp one, and guess what? As soon as i turn the knob (didn't start it) it blew that one too. It seems there is a short somewhere.

Could this and the hard starting issue be related!?

As you can imagine, I'm a bit disappointed about these issues, having just purchased it.

Appreciate all of your inputs!

Good catch. I'm not totally sure if it's related but, go through all the grounds you can find and make sure they're snug, corrosion free, and placed properly.

With all the electrical nonsense on these bikes these days who knows if that would actually cause the issue. Since nothing else is really adding up, I would assume that's the problem until proven otherwise.

Ground on the c14 are a bit of a nuisance. Don't be discouraged though. There are quite a few threads floating around talking about the annoyance of the grounds.

Offline JD

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Re: Help!! Very hard starting when cold
« Reply #24 on: April 14, 2017, 08:13:40 pm »
MMk.

I'm going to ask what seems like a silly question at this point but, after going back and re-reading the rest of this thread I realize this has been specified.

How many days do you go until you try to start it again? Do you start it everyday or do you wait a day or two?

I'm with MOB on this. That video didn't really show anything wrong. Other than having to crank it once more I think we have all done that at least a couple of times with our C14s.

I agree with what you said; but that start on the second try was just luck. Usually i have to crank it more like 6 or 7 times. Which worries me bc i know it is straining the starter motor.

I also try to ride it every day. When not, i keep it plugged to my noco genius, very similar to a battery tender.
Best,

JD

--Harley Davidson is king when it comes to turning gas into smoke, without the outcome of power--