You CAN push start a 'Strom... Battery question - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
General V-Strom Discussion Talk about all things V-Strom not limited to just one of the above models

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 17 Old 10-02-2009, 09:41 AM Thread Starter
Stromthusiast!
 
rockitcity's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Northridge, CA
Posts: 285
You CAN push start a 'Strom... Battery question

So the other day, I get geared up to go home from work and try to start my K7 Wee. Do the usual routine, key, kill switch, kickstand, clutch, and... nothing. No oil-pressure light, no starter. First thought is the various switches, clutch, kickstand, work the kill switch. All ok. Got off the bike and checked the lights with the ignition on and had only a faint glow from the headlights. Battery, of course. Maybe I accidently left the parking light on? Never did it before. No one else around, and I didn't have my Slime compressor with the jumper cable with me, so I pushed the bike up one level in the parking structure (whew, major workout!) and bump started it in 2nd gear on the roll down. Fortunately it worked, and I was able to keep it revved up on the way home. Seemed to take and keep a charge,as it started ok the next day.

Decided to top-off the charge, so I disconnected the battery and hooked it up to a charger that had two settings: 10 amp quick charge and a 2 amp trickle charge. At 10 amps, the charger immediately pegged the charge meter and backed off to zero. It did this several times, like it was trying to charge a short circuit. Figured this wasn't good, so I put the charger on 2 amp trickle charge. This seemed ok, and after 4 or 5 hours, it was showing no further charging activity, indicating a full charge. Reconnected the battery and started the bike fine. Lights seemed brighter than before the problem, and the starter spun right up.

Because of the unusual charger behavior, I'm concerned about the battery condition. My bike is 3 years old and has 10,400 miles on it. I have ridden it fairly regularly in the last year and a half, mostly freeway commuting, and it has not sat through any winter hibernation (hey, this is LA, year-round riding). Should I be concerned about my battery?

Bob

2013 Triumph Tiger Explorer
rockitcity is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 17 Old 10-02-2009, 10:07 AM
Canis Lupus Ridin Sicles
 
GrayWolf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 1976
Location: West Coast
Posts: 1,429
Send a message via Yahoo to GrayWolf Send a message via Skype™ to GrayWolf
I can't speak to the charger behavior but my stock battery lasted 60,000 miles and through several Indiana winters (and I ride up to 20 below or so). So even sitting outside work in the winter it still was good. I also had it discharged several times and recharged it and continued riding. Your mileage may vary but I would keep riding and if it happens again then consider replacing it. Keep some wires under the seat to use to jump the bike in case there is no handy hill.

-GW

GrayWolf
--------------------
"I wouldn't take a million dollars for the experience, but I sure wouldn't give a red cent to go through it again" -Chester Russell
--------------------
2005 DL650 "Maelstrom"
2003 KLR650 "Lou"
1978 Triumph Bonneville 750 "Boomer"
Stromtrooper Offroad Club Member #3
Blue Wee-Strom Club #69
GrayWolf is offline  
post #3 of 17 Old 10-02-2009, 10:13 AM
Stromthusiast!
 
boroop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Middlevile, MI
Posts: 172
Who cares how far you rode it? How many times did you start it? And do you do much off road riding where vibration may be a factor?

How likely are you to get stuck again if it is the battery? And what is that peace of mind worth to ya?

I'd say the cost of running into a good parts store with a battery checker would be worth your time/effort. Your battery, at three years old may be approaching its end of life.

I like knowing I can just jump on and go. But that's just me.

[color=blue]
[size=5]Bo Roop[/size]
2007 Suzuki V-Strom 650
[/color]
boroop is offline  
 
post #4 of 17 Old 10-02-2009, 10:30 AM
Super Moderator
 
V-Tom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Port Perry, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 12,717
It's good you mentioned the age and low mileage!

Three years and the low mileage might give some insight as to what it wrong with the battery: You didn't say if you put a battery maintainer on it, and if you haven't then there is a good chance there is a sulfate build-up on the battery and this has shorted some of the cells out. Some chargers can remove this build-up but most likely you need a new battery.

If you ride it a lot more then the battery gets charged up and is less likely to sulphate. Short trips and long periods between use are very hard on a battery.

..Tom

2006 DL650: 202,000 km 125,500 miles, Sold
2012 DL650 139,500+ km, 86,700+ miles. Sold
2015 DL1000 New July 2015 200,000+ km, 125,000 miles.

This can help preventing from cars pulling out in front of you (SMIDSY)
SMIDSY detailed report.


V-Tom is online now  
post #5 of 17 Old 10-02-2009, 11:02 AM
Stromthusiast!
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Omaha, NE
Posts: 7,543
Meter?

Generally a failing battery will show a fairly quick self-discharge rate. If you have a meter, disconnect the battery, charge it fully. Disconnect from the charger, let the battery sit for a half-hour or so, measure the voltage, should be around 12.5-13.5 volts. Let the battery sit for a couple hours, go back and check it. Should be nearly the same. If there is a considerable drop (more than a half-volt or so) between the first and second measures, the battery is probably failing. If the battery seems OK, reconnect it to the bike. Check the voltage, let it sit for a couple hours, check it again. If you're seeing a big drop here, there's something drawing current on the bike. If not, I'd bet you left the parking light on. Doesn't take much to go from lock to parking light.
Jimding is offline  
post #6 of 17 Old 10-02-2009, 11:48 AM Thread Starter
Stromthusiast!
 
rockitcity's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Northridge, CA
Posts: 285
Quote:
Originally Posted by V-Tom View Post
It's good you mentioned the age and low mileage!

Three years and the low mileage might give some insight as to what it wrong with the battery: You didn't say if you put a battery maintainer on it, and if you haven't then there is a good chance there is a sulfate build-up on the battery and this has shorted some of the cells out. Some chargers can remove this build-up but most likely you need a new battery.

If you ride it a lot more then the battery gets charged up and is less likely to sulphate. Short trips and long periods between use are very hard on a battery.

..Tom
Thanks for the replies. I bought the bike when it was a year and a half old with less than 3,000 miles on it. Previous owner also had a DL1000 and decided he liked it better. I've put nearly 8,000 miles on it since I've had it. My morning commute is about 15 miles freeway, typically a steady 80 mph (LA traffic moves fast at 5:30 AM). Afternoon return is slower, but I lane-split, although I don't do it as fast as some of the squids on their sport bikes. I typically commute 3-4 days per week. It's not sitting around for too long at a time, so I haven't felt the need for a battery tender. I don't off-road at all. I have taken a few longer trips in hot weather (Laguna Seca, Northern California), but nothing that should kill a battery.

Checking with a meter is a good idea. Would an average motorcycle shop be able to test the battery, or would I have to go to a dedicated battery place? Sears, maybe? I have a feeling most places would try to find something wrong with the battery whether there actually was or not...

I appreciate the response.

Bob

2013 Triumph Tiger Explorer
rockitcity is offline  
post #7 of 17 Old 10-02-2009, 12:48 PM
$tromtrooper
 
garandman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 4,198
Quote:
Originally Posted by rockitcity View Post
//

Decided to top-off the charge, so I disconnected the battery and hooked it up to a charger that had two settings: 10 amp quick charge and a 2 amp trickle charge. At 10 amps, the charger immediately pegged the charge meter and backed off to zero. It did this several times, like it was trying to charge a short circuit. Figured this wasn't good, so I put the charger on 2 amp trickle charge. This seemed ok, and after 4 or 5 hours, it was showing no further charging activity, indicating a full charge. Reconnected the battery and started the bike fine. Lights seemed brighter than before the problem, and the starter spun right up.

Because of the unusual charger behavior, I'm concerned about the battery condition. My bike is 3 years old and has 10,400 miles on it. I have ridden it fairly regularly in the last year and a half, mostly freeway commuting, and it has not sat through any winter hibernation (hey, this is LA, year-round riding). Should I be concerned about my battery?

Bob
That's way too high a rate for a motorcycle battery, so it doesn't really indicate a problem or absence of a problem. Any idea of what caused it to go flat?

2005 DL650 (sold) | 2009 DL650A (sold) | 2008 Tiger 1050 ABS | 2012 WR250R | 2008 CRF100F
garandman is offline  
post #8 of 17 Old 10-02-2009, 12:54 PM
Stromthusiast!
 
randyo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Farmington, New Hampshire, USA
Posts: 10,196
Quote:
Originally Posted by rockitcity View Post
So, so I pushed the bike up one level in the parking structure (whew, major workout!) and bump started it in 2nd gear on the roll down.
it only worked cause there was still enuf juice in the battery to pressurize the fuel injection system

if the battery was completely flat, it would not have started



Never pay again for live sex! | Hot girls doing naughty stuff for free! | Chat for free!

RandyO
IBA# 9560
07 Strom 1k (8x,xxx miles)
99 SV650 (135,006 miles)
82 XV920R
A man with a gun is a citizen
A man without a gun is a subject
www.gbhsurvey.com
randyo is offline  
post #9 of 17 Old 10-02-2009, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
Stromthusiast!
 
rockitcity's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Northridge, CA
Posts: 285
Quote:
That's way too high a rate for a motorcycle battery, so it doesn't really indicate a problem or absence of a problem. Any idea of what caused it to go flat?
Probably left the parking light on although I didn't notice it when leaving and never have before. Easy to do though.

Quote:
it only worked cause there was still enuf juice in the battery to pressurize the fuel injection system

if the battery was completely flat, it would not have started
I usually hear the fuel pump whir when turning on the ignition. Didn't do it this time. Thinking maybe the alternator put out enough juice to charge the injectors? Anyway, I could never have push-started it on my own on flat ground.

2013 Triumph Tiger Explorer
rockitcity is offline  
post #10 of 17 Old 10-02-2009, 01:33 PM
Stromthusiast!
 
JPryce's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: VT
Posts: 186
Don't junk the battery just yet. Yuasa has a simple table you can use to get an idea about the health of your battery, or if your local shop has one good guy in the shop, they can test it in a matter of seconds for free.

I'd also quickly test the charging system by measuring the voltage at the battery with the bike running at ~3k.

2012 Super Tenere
2006 CRF50 with big-boy mods. :biggrin:
1973 RD350
JPryce is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome