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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-13-2018, 07:05 AM Thread Starter
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Cold weather starting

Not sure if I'm being paranoid or not but since the weather has turned decidedly cooler this last week my America 06 is reluctant to start and takes quite a time with my thumb on the starter button for any action, regardless if the choke is in or out. I have noticed that (hot or cold weather) there seems to be a point when I am pressing the starter button that it only fires up when I start to release the pressure on the button. I read a while ago that someone else posted a similar anomaly with the starter button but I can't find the post now.
On a positive note the battery is new this year, and normally sits at around 12.9v. Also 18 months ago I replaced the ECU unit with a TTP unit and have had no trouble with this.
Thanks for your time.
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-13-2018, 09:25 AM
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The starter switch could be dirty or greasy. Grease gets hard in the cold. Also, are you unconciously moving the clutch lever as you struggle with the start button? On my bike, if I haven't recently cleaned out the switch, even a slight movement in or out can cause the interlock in the lever to engage. Not that, as a coastal Californian, I know much about this cold you speak of ;-)
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-13-2018, 12:57 PM Thread Starter
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Cold weather starting

Thanks for that 1arryb. Not sure about the clutch lever but will definitely remember you comments when I try to start it tomorrow. Will also have a look at the starter contacts as you suggest but assumed (wrongly or rightly) that by pressing the tit, the starting circuit is working - ie: the starter motor turns, the relay that momentarily turns the headlight off is working etc etc. With regards to the temperature, it's not too cold here in Bulgaria at present - round about 2 to 5 deg (Celsius) first thing in the morning which would normally be ok for starting bike, but just a bit odd that the slight drop in temp recently seems to have affected the starting.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-13-2018, 06:37 PM
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I have had a few issues over the years when starting. Mostly EFI related low battery voltage (12.4VDC being just below ECU threshold for engaging the starter). But have also had the poor contact issue at the starter button. During troubleshooting I opened the switch gear and inspected the button parts. Didn't really have any corrosion of the spring & contact, more like tarnish on the surfaces. Cleaned them up and that starting issue went away. The above mentioned clutch switch is certainly worth a look. A good clean and/or spay of the little clutch sensor switch would help eliminate that as a cause. And of course, double or triple check the battery terminal connections. There are other starter lockouts like side stand and neutral switches but from your description they don't seem likely, guessing the carb versions had the same "safety" switches as the later EFI models.
Have you made any modifications recently, like any changes to the lighting, air intake or exhaust? Have you pulled the air filter and inspected it recently or does it just seem to be a delayed engaging of the starter?

2009 America with some modifications, a lot of fun that I can ride all day. (sold and miss my 2008 Bonneville, a great daily driver)
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-13-2018, 08:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Papageno View Post
Not sure if I'm being paranoid or not but since the weather has turned decidedly cooler this last week my America 06 is reluctant to start and takes quite a time with my thumb on the starter button for any action, regardless if the choke is in or out. I have noticed that (hot or cold weather) there seems to be a point when I am pressing the starter button that it only fires up when I start to release the pressure on the button.
My initial thought when reading this was that the starter does not have a problem engaging and spinning the engine over when the starter button is pushed, it's just that the engine won't fire until that moment when the starter button is released. Is that the case papageno? With your battery voltage being good, it almost seems like the starter is soaking up too much juice for the ingnition system to operate correctly. The moment the starter button is released, it lets the ignition have enough juice to start the engine. I have run into this before on other vehicles.
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-14-2018, 08:36 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies and will try to comment on all of them here. I checked the starter button which appeared to be ok but cleaned it anyway. I also checked and sprayed the clutch sensor, again ok. I went to start it this morning and it gave the same symptoms as described before. ie: Full choke - did a couple of blips on throttle - starter motor engages but no firing - kept thumb on button for what seemed an eternity then as soon as pressure released from button the engine fired up but died. Managed to catch it the next time and with a bit of coaxing it picked up and after it warmed up it behaved normally. I actually took it for a run for around 40 miles and it behaved ok. However, I did stop 3 times on this trip and noticed that each time I started the engine again it only fired up when I took pressure off the starter tit, so yes Sanckinel you may be onto something here. Have you any checks or remedies to ascertain this?
BTW Mattymo have checked the air filter and no mods have been done and it does just appear to be delayed starting. Regards to all

Last edited by Papageno; 11-14-2018 at 08:40 AM.
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-14-2018, 03:04 PM
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I would definitely check the headlight relay. Make sure it is disabling the headlight when the starter is engaged. ...J.D.
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-14-2018, 03:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Wire-Wheels pretty sure the relay is working ok but will double check.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-14-2018, 05:36 PM
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You might also check your carburetor heaters (yes, it has one on each carburetor). As I remember the thermostat allows them to come on at 40f or below. ...J.D.
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-14-2018, 08:50 PM
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The only checks I can think of would be to try to verify if there was an extrordinarily high amperage draw when pressing the starter button. Maybe watch battery voltage and see how much it drops when trying to start it. Could be an indicator of something in the ignition system (ignitor, plugs, plug wires?) starting to fail although the only way to test for that would be to switch out for a known good one. Sorry I'm not any more help.
Edit: reread and see ignitor has been replaced already.
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