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Bike wont start via starter button.

Discussion in 'XJ Technical Chat' started by Rodney Brown, Apr 5, 2020.

  1. Rodney Brown

    Rodney Brown Member

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    Hey guys. The starter button on my bike will not ignite the engine ;instead I hear the solenoid simply click when I press the button.( I'm able to start the bike by jumping it through the solenoid, however). I've already ordered a new solenoid. Was wondering if the solenoid is actually the problem however? I figure it can't be the starter button itself because I actually hear a click in the solenoid. So did I do the right thing by ordering a new solenoid? Thanks again in advance for your input.
     
  2. SQLGuy

    SQLGuy Well-Known Member

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    Based on that description, it's probably the solenoid.

    The one other test you could run is turning on the key and jumpering the blue/white wire/terminal at the solenoid to ground (engine, battery negative, or bare frame). If that engages the starter, then the solenoid is OK.
     
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  3. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    You could try cleaning the two large wire connections on the solenoid often overlooked. I replace the solenoid are too just to find out that those connections were dirty
     
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  4. CapnRedbeard

    CapnRedbeard Member

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    Could aslo be the battery? how old and what condition is it in? sure many of us have turned a key and just got clicking from the solenoid and not enough juice to spin the motor.
     
  5. SQLGuy

    SQLGuy Well-Known Member

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    If the battery is strong enough to actually crank the starter and start the engine, it will be strong enough to actuate the solenoid. He said jumpering the solenoid starts the engine.
     
  6. CapnRedbeard

    CapnRedbeard Member

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    Missed that bit :( ill try and digest what i read next time!
     
  7. Jetfixer

    Jetfixer Well-Known Member

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    Solenoids are cheap , mine would intermittently start and other times just click , replaced and problem solved .
     
  8. Rodney Brown

    Rodney Brown Member

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    THX GUYZ!! IT WAS THE SOLENOID! RRPLACED IT! SHE FIRES RIGHT UP!
     
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  9. ChristiaanM

    ChristiaanM New Member

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    I have an XJ900 and I think I have to replace the starter solenoid also. But when I press the start button it doesnt click anymore.
    I tried jump starting to through the battery but didnt think to try jumping the solenoid.
     
  10. SQLGuy

    SQLGuy Well-Known Member

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    Could also be the starter switch, the run/stop switch, ground to the handle bars, a bad fuse, the sidestand/neutral/clutch start disable circuit...
     
  11. ChristiaanM

    ChristiaanM New Member

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    I agree, I am looking at the starter switch today. The kill switch has been bypassed, fuses are good, sidestand and clutch sensors have been bypassed also. I'm really hoping its not a grounding issue - I've gone through and checked all the wiring and doesnt appear to be accidentally grounded anywhere.
     
  12. chacal

    chacal Moderator Moderator Supporting Vendor Premium Member

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    Actually, what SQLguy was referring to is that pushing the START button actually creates the ground circuit for the solenoid, and w/o a ground, then the "hot" (from the battery) might be all dressed up, but has no place to go and thus can't power the device (in this case, the solenoid).

    The unique feature of the START button is that pushing it in completes the ground circuit by using the control switch housing as the "ground" (since the control switch housing is metal, and is attached to metal handlebars, which are attached to metal steering bracket, which is attached to the frame of the bike, and there is a at least one (or more) ground wire running from the frame (usually at the rear mounting bolt of the right side ignition coil) back to the negative terminal of the battery........and that's your completed ground circuit, which makes the solenoid work.

    Inside the control switch, there is a blue wire that comes from the solenoid; that is the ground wire running from the solenoid. If that wire has broken off, etc. then pushing the START button will do nothing. Or, if the metal "cage" that the surrounds the pushbutton (inside the control switch) isn't making good contact with the switch housing, then again, you lose the ground path. Likewise if the control switch itself isn't making good contact with the handlebars.......no ground path (this is why "black" handlebars are actually black-chrome-plated, rather than painted or powdercoated. NOTE: some models actually do have a ground wire, internal to the control switch, that runs to the main harness, but again, if it has become corroded or is making poor contact where it is screwed onto/into the control switch housing...........then again, the spice can't flow.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2020
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  13. ChristiaanM

    ChristiaanM New Member

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    Thanks so much for this explanation! I was aware of the start button completing the solenoid circuit via grounding but didn’t know about the internal housing ground! The previous owner has crudely painted everything black with a spray can so I’ve had some challenges!
    I started the bike but bridging the solenoid large points and went for a small ride for the first time! So I know she runs well but I suspect you’re right with the internal grounding to the case of the start switch!

    Thanks again, I’ll let you know how I go!
     
  14. ChristiaanM

    ChristiaanM New Member

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    Hey guys just following up, did voltage/amp tests with the starter button and solenoid and confirmed the solenoid is cactus. I’ve replaced it ($40 part) and she fires up beautifully!
    Thanks for your help, and probs to City West Yamaha (Melbourne) - the guys there loved having a chat and talked me through some stuff also!
     

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