Kawasaki VN750 Forum banner

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
For some reason my 96 model won't start. In fact, it hasn't started since I brought it home from the guy I bought it from....

When I pulled up to the dude's house, he had a charger hooked up to it. We took the charger off and started it up. Everything seemed ok. I turned the bike off so we could talk some more. I tried to start it up for a test drive a little while later, but it wouldn't start. Strange. We hooked it back up to the charger, and after a few minutes it started up. I took it for a test drive, and everything else was great. He was letting it go for a good deal, so I bought it despite the hiccup. I took it home on a trailer.

When I got it to the house, again, it wouldn't start. When I turned the key it would go chug.....chug.....chug like it wanted to start but it was only turning over once every three seconds. So I bought a new battery.

Same thing. Chug....chug....chug. If I take the spark plugs out, it at least turns over faster, but it still won't start. I've charged it, tried to jump it, and nothing. My neighbor wants to jump it at someplace past the battery, but I think that's just a guess.

Anybody have any ideas?

Thanks!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,778 Posts
Have you had the new battery load tested? Failures of new batteries, especially Chinese made ones, are not all that uncommon.

You can probably start it by jumping it with a car battery, but be sure the car's engine isn't running! You can fry the bike's electronics if the car engine is running.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
The batt you bought, was it a common wet cell which you need to fill up with acid and hook up to a charger for 8 hours before you install? If the answer is yes, did you follow the charging instructions to the letter? Cause those things won't do any better than an AA battery if you don't do the first charging correctly.

What you are describing my friend, sounds to me like a battery issue. If you are running a wet cell, do your Vulcan a favor and yourself an even a bigger one and buy a good M/F battery. That thing alone solved 90% of all my starting problems.
Initially when I read about the M/F batts in here and saw how the folks here talk about them, I thought they are being overrated. But now I would dump a wet cell for a M/F one even if the wet cell is still new in the box, without a second thought.

Aside from the problem which will be solved anyway, I noticed this is actually your first post Chris. So I would like to take this opportunity to welcome you on board mate. This is a great place to start learning about the bike.

Do read the Vulcan Verses for almost all you need to know about your bike too. The info there is priceless.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the info, and I appreciate the welcome!

yes, It is a Walmart battery. I filled it with acid per instructions, and it said that the battery had to charge for 2-6 hours. I charged it for right around 2 hours at 2 amps.

I also hooked it up to the big charger and charged it at 10 amps for a couple of hours, and I even tried to jump it with the car, all to no avail.

Today I just hooked it back up to the 2 amp trickle charger. The light on the charger says 'charging', and so I'll wait to see if it changes to 'charged'.

But maybe I should just return the battery to Walmart? It has a warranty. I don't know much about motorcycle batteries, but someone did mention to me that the local harley dealership has better batteries that I don't have to pour acid into or charge, and that I can just hook it right up...If you think this is a battery issue that may be my best bet.
 

·
Linkmeister Supreme
Joined
·
7,960 Posts
Thanks for the info, and I appreciate the welcome!

yes, It is a Walmart battery. I filled it with acid per instructions, and it said that the battery had to charge for 2-6 hours. I charged it for right around 2 hours at 2 amps.

I also hooked it up to the big charger and charged it at 10 amps for a couple of hours, and I even tried to jump it with the car, all to no avail.

Today I just hooked it back up to the 2 amp trickle charger. The light on the charger says 'charging', and so I'll wait to see if it changes to 'charged'.

But maybe I should just return the battery to Walmart? It has a warranty. I don't know much about motorcycle batteries, but someone did mention to me that the local harley dealership has better batteries that I don't have to pour acid into or charge, and that I can just hook it right up...If you think this is a battery issue that may be my best bet.
Welcome to the Vulcan madness Chris.

I hope I`m wrong, but you may have cooked the battery and warped the plates by charging at 10 amps. This is a 14 amp hour battery and ideally should never be charged at a rate higher than one tenth (1/10) of it`s rated capacity, which is 1.4 amps. The 2 amp charger is close enough that most use it with no adverse effects. Ten amps is five to seven times greater than the recommended charge rate.

Charging at a too great a rate will overheat the internal plates and cause them to warp, shorting out the cell. Check the DC voltage at the terminals of the hopefully fully charged battery. If you have substantially less than 12.5-13.5 volts, I think the battery has one or more shorted out cells. A 12 volt battery has 6 cells, each of which generates about 2.2 volts (13.2 v total).

Take the battery back to Walmat for a load test. Don`t mention the 10 amp charging unless specifically asked how you charged it. Hopefully they will honor the warranty and replace the battery.

Is your battery a regular wet cell style with removeable caps for adding distilled water?
Or is it a Maintenance Free-AGM battery that has a sealing strip snapped into place after the electrolyte was poured into the cells?

The MF-AGM battery is the one you want. Upgrade from the regular wet cell battery with the removable caps, if that is what you bought originally. Although it is more expensive to buy initially, it will give better and longer service and work out to be more economical in the long run.

FYI, MF batteries can be purchased at two different levels of readiness to use. The first is with the electrolyte already installed and the battery precharged,

OR often for a few dollars less you buy a kit with the electrolyte in 6 little plastic bottles all joined together in a row, that you pour in the battery case yourself and charge it for several hours at home.

Both these option may or may not be available at all suppliers.

The Harley dealer will almost certainly be more expensive. If you can`t find a suitable supplier locally, this ebay source is a high quality battery at a reasonable price.
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/Deka...em&pt=Other_Vehicle_Parts&hash=item3eee173adb
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,687 Posts
Welcome!

Initially I was thinking you should check your battery connections and grounds, but after reading how you charged that battery, it definitely seems like it's a battery issue.

My battery charged for a LONG time with a trickle charger... I think it's 1A, don't remember well. Mine was an AGM battery though and it's supposed to take longer. However, I don't think 2 hours were nearly enough to get it charged right initially. Then the 10A charge could have fried it.

I also recommend the maintenance free battery... I had lots of battery troubles when I got my bike and the AGM battery solved them. Just make sure to follow the charging instructions. Also, if you have an automatic trickle charger it should tell you when the battery is fully charged, so just wait for it.

Lastly, you can hook up a car battery to the bike to see how it starts. Take off the motorcycle battery and use only the car battery... I found with mine that having the motorcycle battery on there and just trying to jump it sometimes didn't work, but as soon as I tried it only with the car battery it started right up. Just make sure the positive wire doesn't touch the frame.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Yup Gordon, that's the batt I'm using too. Cost me around $130 to buy and ship it to Malaysia where I live.

Yes Chris I paid that much for the batt and Yes again I was that desperate to see all my problems disappear. The good news for me was, they did disappear. Almost all of them.

As for your batt, I think Gordon's got a point here. Most probably you have fried your batt. It would be great if they just replace it for you based on the warranty it has got. Ask if you can just get the M/F battery instead of a similar replacement and pay the difference in the prices. It is worth the investment my friend.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Wow, you all have been super helpful.

And I admit, I am the newbie who signed up and posted a problem right away...I realize now that I could have typed 'battery' into the search box and probably found the answer I was looking for by reading posts by most of the people who responded to me here.

Anyway, I took the possibly damaged wet cell battery back to Walmart this morning, and if I had kept my receipt, they would have given me a refund. Since I didn't, and since they didn't carry an AGM battery, I have a 43.99 gift card. I promptly went to advance auto parts and ordered the proper AGM for $85. It's a generic brand, but it will be here this afternoon.

I sure will be excited if the bike starts today.....if not...you'll hear back from me later.

many thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,687 Posts
Weird... I got my AGM at Wal Mart.
 

·
Old Twistie Sticks Rider
Joined
·
5,072 Posts
Wow, you all have been super helpful.

Anyway, I took the possibly damaged wet cell battery back to Walmart this morning, and if I had kept my receipt, they would have given me a refund. Since I didn't
????? Chris always keep the receipt, surely a lesson learned... I had a problem like I had had before on my PU, and was goin to get a new battery but the wife said to me, I thought you got a new battery about a year ago... Sure enough after a little dig in the glove box a receipt from Advance Auto, I returned the battery and the check showed a bad battery and I got a new N/C freeby, +/- $100 saved by the wife and a receipt... I guess I'm the one here with CRS ...lol...
So hang on to those receipts for a bit...
Have a good one...Old Dog...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,687 Posts
It was easier to keep receipts with my Mustang... any receipt I needed to keep for an extended period of time, I just threw in the glove box.
 

·
Linkmeister Supreme
Joined
·
7,960 Posts
It was easier to keep receipts with my Mustang... any receipt I needed to keep for an extended period of time, I just threw in the glove box.
Keep the receipts all in an envelope with your service and maintenance log book in the garage, desk or dresser drawer.:smiley_th
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Well, I did get it running. Once.

The engine for whatever reason doesn't seem to be getting adequate gas....the spark plugs were only wet on one side....going to make sure that the gas drains properly from the tank tomorrow, as well as make sure there's no water in the tank.

I'll be sure to repost my new problem soon.

Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,687 Posts
Keep the receipts all in an envelope with your service and maintenance log book in the garage, desk or dresser drawer.:smiley_th
I have no garage, no desk, no dresser or drawer and no service and maintenance log book lol.

Yea, it probably implies that I SHOULD have all those things (especially the log book), but I can't have much right now til I get a real job :-/ stupid job people never calling lol.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,687 Posts
Well, I did get it running. Once.

The engine for whatever reason doesn't seem to be getting adequate gas....the spark plugs were only wet on one side....going to make sure that the gas drains properly from the tank tomorrow, as well as make sure there's no water in the tank.

I'll be sure to repost my new problem soon.

Thanks
When you take off the tank check if the petcock is leaking when you take off the hoses. There should be no fuel flow if there's no vacuum applied (unless you have/use the "prime" position).
 

·
1985 VN-700
Joined
·
418 Posts
Alternator, regulator? Mine would run until the battery rand down then stall and not restart until I charged the battery back up. Takes at least 10 volts to fire the coils
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
399 Posts
I just installed the Deka AGM (ETX15L) in my 86. This fixed all my starting problems, the wet cell was also only 200 cranking amps. not COLD cranking amps, (30 degrees or below) the new batt. is 220 COLD cranking amps, and the normal CA are more! this battery is powerful, and now i need to buy a Battery Tender, which seems to be the best thing for these types of batteries. I never charge more than 2amps, for the reason which was already stated, its too much for the battery.
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top