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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2000 vs800 Intruder and it's been a frustrating couple of days. I parked it last Saturday night and weather and work kept me from riding til Thursday night. At which point I put the key in the ignition, the bike lit up like normal, but when I hit the ignition switch... click click click. Nothin but the click of the starter solenoid.

I double checked that I was in neutral (clutch still pulled in,) the kill switch was in the start position and I put the kickstand up this time and tried it again. And again. And on the third try the lights went out. So, I figured, it's been colder, I'd had some trouble with what I'm somewhat certain was bad gas and had to start it a few times the weekend before, and I bet the battery is dead.

The next morning I decided to jump it from my car battery by hooking into the hot wire leading to the starter solenoid. The car was off of course. I had no trouble at all hooking it up, turned the ignition key and all the lights came back up, but when I hit the ignition button... click click click. Well, ****. Maybe I just don't know how to jump a motorcycle.

I have a battery tender line installed, so I hooked it up to my trickle charger and let it sit all day friday and into saturday morning.

I know what you're going to say. "Why didn't you just hook it up to the charger the night before?" Well, I live in a third floor apartment and, well, it's a giant hassle to run the extension cord and I wasn't in the mood to wake my girlfriend as I rummaged around for said cord. Anyway...

When I came out and checked it late Saturday morning, after nearly 24 hours of charging on the trickle charger, the charger light was green. HURRAY! So I stuck the key in, lights came on, hit the ignition and... you guessed it! CLICK CLICK CLICK aaaaand lights off.

To speed this all along, I'll list what I've done.

Turned the key on and checked the battery and the ignition solenoid with my multimeter. The red line on the solenoid is hot until just after I hit the ignition, then it goes to 0.00. Which is supposed to happen, from what I understand.
The battery was reading just under 12.5v, so seemed alright.

Took the battery out and over to advanced auto for a load check just in case my reading was false. Their little machine spit out a receipt saying the battery was "Good - Recharge" with 12.37V. Just what I was getting on my multimeter.

I cleaned the battery terminals, positive and negative leads on the bike, AND both red and black wires leading out of the starter solenoid (as they looked slightly corroded) all with a wire brush.

Used battery terminal (anti-corrosive) spray on the terminals and connectors along with the solenoid wires. Perhaps that last bit was a bad idea?

I put everything back together and turned the key. This time I got nothin'. NOTHIN! AAAHHHHH!!! I checked the obvious fuse box and all fuses are fine. Nothing even remotely burnt looking. Are there other fuses inline that I should check?

One weird thing, when I put the left side cover back on, I tried the key again and the lights came on! But... click click click went the starter solenoid. No turning over. AND the lights went out again and wont come back on.

Any suggestions of what I can try before taking it in to the shop? Could the battery still be bad even after getting a good load test?

Any help is greatly appreciated.
 

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What you really need to be doing is checking the battery voltage when you HIT the starter, not a static voltage reading. A healthy 12 volt motorcycle battery should maintain a range from 9.5 - 10.5 volts under the load for at least 30 seconds straight. If the battery drops in voltage below 9.5, the battery is bad.
If your battery passes the load test in your bike, the next logical point to troubleshoot would be your starter itself. It could have failed (it is 15 years old) and may need replaced.

Good luck.
 

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no start

Bad battery.
I had Advance charge mine for four hours after I had the charger on it all night. Came back a dead cell. New battery and no problems. BTW they sell one with a 12 month guarantee that's worth the extra coins.
 

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Do NOT go to advance auto and buy a MOTORCYCLE battery. They do not specialize in MC parts and have no idea what they are selling you. If you need to buy a battery for your Motorcycle, pay the money and get a good one like a Motobatt or Yuasa or Odyssey.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks a lot for the responses so far. One thing I realize I left out though. Before I re-installed the battery, I hooked it up to the trickle charger all on its own and charged it again until the green light lit up on my trickle charger. I then took the cables off and checked it with my multimeter and it read a straight 13.0v. Afterwards, I let it sit over night, and tested it with my multimeter once more before re-installing and it read 12.5v. I'm assuming the extra .5v was residual from the trickle charger having just come off. So, unless I'm wrong there, I'm not too concerned with that. My real question then is were my battery shot, would it show a full charge like that? Perhaps charging so far beyond 12.5 is indicative of a battery going to pot.
 

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Try it with a multimeter on the battery when you press the start button. Then come back and tell us the voltage. If your battery drops below 10 volts when u hit the start button, it is a bad battery, regardless of how much charge it shows while NOT under a load.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I just tried. Tapping into the battery with the key on, but no load, the battery read just under 12 (sorry I'm not exact. I did it on a whim about an hour ago then decided to check here again.) Holding the ignition switch, the battery actually read above 12.
 

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I just tried. Tapping into the battery with the key on, but no load, the battery read just under 12 (sorry I'm not exact. I did it on a whim about an hour ago then decided to check here again.) Holding the ignition switch, the battery actually read above 12.
With all the charging you have apparently done the The battery should be holding better than 12.5v with the key on and not cranking.

You can compare a good battery to the bucket that you fill with water to a bad battery is a bucket that is full of rocks and water.

The water in each of the buckets represents the amount of charge the battery holds and is available for things like cranking the engine with the starter. The rocks represent the damage to the plates of the battery over its previous life that will prevent it from accepting a full charge even though it looks like the bucket is full to the brim and the battery voltage is at the expected level for a full charge.

The Bad battery/bucket with rocks and less water may only have enough charge to run the lights for a little while and the starter draw when attempting to crank the engine over drains the bucket/battery.

even though a poor connection or a failed starter can give similar symptoms while cranking I am with the opinions of the rest that your battery has failed.
 
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battery

Do NOT go to advance auto and buy a MOTORCYCLE battery. They do not specialize in MC parts and have no idea what they are selling you. If you need to buy a battery for your Motorcycle, pay the money and get a good one like a Motobatt or Yuasa or Odyssey.
I have to disagree with this. I bought one at Advance over 6 months ago and had had no problems. It had a 12 month warranty which is better than most batteries that only have 3 months. There was a Yuasa sitting right beside it. I bought a battery at Tractor Supply once that the only difference between it and the "factory spec battery" was the terminals were on opposite sides if the caps. And it was 1/2 the price. Worked fine in my voyager for a long time.
 

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I have to disagree with this. I bought one at Advance over 6 months ago and had had no problems. It had a 12 month warranty which is better than most batteries that only have 3 months. There was a Yuasa sitting right beside it. I bought a battery at Tractor Supply once that the only difference between it and the "factory spec battery" was the terminals were on opposite sides if the caps. And it was 1/2 the price. Worked fine in my voyager for a long time.
That's fine, you have that right. I won't shop there. I am a retired diesel mechanic of 27 years and I don't shop there, but that's just my opinion. The price sometimes isn't worth the hassle to me. I would rather pay the money the first time than the tow bill. Oh, I also don't shop at tractor supply either.

Going to an Auto parts store to buy a Motorcycle battery is like going to a Pizza place and ordering a Taco. Not this guy.
 

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I had that problem for me I was able to fix by dropping battery remove terminals , use star washers and red lock tight on all screws reinstalled battery and terminals cranked down on them good and tight and knock on wood no more problems
 

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Advance

That's fine, you have that right. I won't shop there. I am a retired diesel mechanic of 27 years and I don't shop there, but that's just my opinion. The price sometimes isn't worth the hassle to me. I would rather pay the money the first time than the tow bill. Oh, I also don't shop at tractor supply either.

Going to an Auto parts store to buy a Motorcycle battery is like going to a Pizza place and ordering a Taco. Not this guy.
Not trying to start an argument but my local Advance has a complete line of autocraft batteries , parts, filters (k & N) Valvoline mc oil, mobil 1and other parts specifically for motorcycles. Besides its 3 miles compared to the local dealer 17 miles.
Like you say to each his own.
 

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You say that after putting the battery back in that you got "NOTHING"....but when you put the left cover back on....the lights started working again. Did you by chance check ALL connecting points of the cables? Just asking. (Maybe I missed something while reading).
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yeah, I got nothing until after I put that side cover back on. I double checked everything that I had taken off or even loosened. I even took the cables off and put them back on and still had no lights until I put the cover back on. When I went back out a few hours later to attempt to check the battery under load, the lights came on. But only until I hit the ignition and then nothin again. I know that with other types of batteries, if they sit and "rest" for a while, they'll act like they have a charge and turn a light on or change a channel or two. Until you really try to use whatever they're there to power, then they're dead again. Kind of a ghost charge. Maybe that's what I'm getting here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Here's a specific question about batteries. I've been looking around for name brand batteries and found only one guy in town that is a Yuasa dealer. I called him up and he can definitely order my battery, but he doesn't recommend the wet cell batteries anymore, and actually offered to retrofit the battery compartment on my bike and install a new, dry cell battery for only about $20 more than just selling the Yuasa to me. According to him, the dry cells are better. Specifically when it comes to ignition. The guy's been in business for quite a long time, so I assume he knows something of what he's talking. What are your opinions?
 

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Here's a specific question about batteries. I've been looking around for name brand batteries and found only one guy in town that is a Yuasa dealer. I called him up and he can definitely order my battery, but he doesn't recommend the wet cell batteries anymore, and actually offered to retrofit the battery compartment on my bike and install a new, dry cell battery for only about $20 more than just selling the Yuasa to me. According to him, the dry cells are better. Specifically when it comes to ignition. The guy's been in business for quite a long time, so I assume he knows something of what he's talking. What are your opinions?

He is likely talking about the ''AGM'' batteries... 'Absorbed Glass Mat''

They are the best deal for the money and less likely to leak/boil over in your battery compartment. There should be an AGM battery that is a direct fit for your bike.

Here is some extra info on them.... What is an AGM Battery?=


..
 
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