electrical issues


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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enjoyriding
Posts: 18
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2013 8:27 pm
Location: Derby, Kansas
Motorcycle: 1996 GL1500SE 83,000+
1980 XS1100G 101,200 sold
1976 XS650 54, 000 sold

electrical issues

Postby enjoyriding » Thu Sep 26, 2013 7:22 pm



I've recently purchased a 1996 GL1500SE with approximately 81,000 miles on it. It has some electrical problems I've come across. 1) The battery will discharge if the key is removed in the OFF position, but will not discharge when the key is removed in the LOCK position. So, the LOCK position is always used. 2) The bike won’t start some times. With all the electrical working when the key is turned to the ON position, kick stand down, in neutral, and choke set, once the start button is pushed, it all dies No starter engagement, it just all dies. Most of the time, the lights will come back on, in about 3 seconds, and you can push the start button again, but the lights just go out again. Usually I have to cycle the key to the OFF position and back before it will come back on. Cycling the key is not always a fix either. Only once has it failed and never came back on. Today I riding on a frontage road and downshifting for a red light and it died on me. I coasted to a driveway and stopped. After the fourth try it started, I road it straight home. :? Any help would be greatly appreciated.


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virgilmobile
Posts: 7645
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 5:39 pm
Location: Denham Springs,La.
Motorcycle: 1988 GL1500 I
Previously owned
78 GL1000
81 GL1100
82 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 standard
84 GL 1200 I

Re: electrical issues

Postby virgilmobile » Fri Sep 27, 2013 7:10 am

A couple of things jump out at me.
A bad ignition switch first and then sticking/bad relay.The main one.
They can be swapped around.
Some have found burnt connections in the fuse/relay box .
You can have more than just one problem.
****Attack the first one.****
Why it discharges the battery with the key off.
I can disect the wiring if you need more info.

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robb
Posts: 1040
Joined: Mon Jul 19, 2010 7:46 pm
Location: Lexington, North Carolina
Motorcycle: 1989 Honda GL1500 Aspencade

Re: electrical issues

Postby robb » Fri Sep 27, 2013 10:38 am

Since the switch activates the relay panel I would suggest removing and cleaning all the relays. Easy way to test relays is to sway the headlight relays (hi or low) and flip switch on bars. If a bad relay is found it can be replaced with one from headlamp, the one you are least likely to use.

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artgrantz
Posts: 276
Joined: Sat Apr 10, 2010 9:25 pm
Location: Manchester, PA
Motorcycle: Current: 2008 GL1800
Previous: 96 GL1500 SE
85 GL1200 I
85 GL1200 I
75 GL1000
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Re: electrical issues

Postby artgrantz » Fri Sep 27, 2013 12:57 pm

Regarding the non start issue, I had a similar occurance. It turned out to be a bad gel battery. it didn't act like a dead battery because like yours, it would start after a few minutes. I finally installed a new battery and the problem ceased.
I can't help with the OFF/LOCK problem except to ask if anyone, previous owner perhaps, has done some rewiring or installed electrical accesories improperly.
Good Luck with this.

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ct1500
Posts: 813
Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2010 8:09 pm
Location: Glastonbury,CT
Motorcycle: 1988 GL1500
Contact:

Re: electrical issues

Postby ct1500 » Fri Sep 27, 2013 9:50 pm

The complete loss of all electrical when button pushed is most likely a corroded connection at battery posts or at the 55A dog bone fuse to the right of battery. Remove and clean terminal connections with sand paper, wire brush, etc.
This is what I do
Local and need repair help with your 1500, Valkyrie or ST please PM

enjoyriding
Posts: 18
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2013 8:27 pm
Location: Derby, Kansas
Motorcycle: 1996 GL1500SE 83,000+
1980 XS1100G 101,200 sold
1976 XS650 54, 000 sold

Re: electrical issues

Postby enjoyriding » Sat Sep 28, 2013 12:28 pm

Thanks for all the suggestions. I've printed them and I'll get to work on it as time allows.
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enjoyriding
Posts: 18
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2013 8:27 pm
Location: Derby, Kansas
Motorcycle: 1996 GL1500SE 83,000+
1980 XS1100G 101,200 sold
1976 XS650 54, 000 sold

Re: electrical issues, (1996 GL1500SE)

Postby enjoyriding » Thu Oct 03, 2013 1:29 pm

Finally got the fuses looked at and ohm'ed out good for continuity, all checked good. Checked the relays (left side, under seat and in front of the battery), found all the brass tabs to have 100 ohms and the copper tabs to be open except for the "position" relay, which read closed. I swapped "ignition, cruise" relay the "air pump" relay. Checked continuity at both "fuseable fuses'", both check good, although the 65 amp one under the seat had a little surface corrosion which cleaned up easily. One more thing about the relays. The one forward of the battery brass tabs only read 3 ohms. The battery looks to be fairly new, no dust on it, and the terminals look good. Put all back together and still didn't start. Took battery in for a load test and it failed immediately once the load was applied. An identical replacement battery is being ordered. Wow! That relay cover by the left saddle bag is...fun. :(
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WingAdmin
Site Admin
Posts: 17045
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:16 pm
Location: Strongsville, OH
Motorcycle: 2000 GL1500 SE
1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
1989 PC800 (wife's!)
1998 XV250 Virago (sold)
2007 Aspen Sentry Trailer

Re: electrical issues, (1996 GL1500SE)

Postby WingAdmin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 3:07 pm

enjoyriding wrote:Finally got the fuses looked at and ohm'ed out good for continuity, all checked good. Checked the relays (left side, under seat and in front of the battery), found all the brass tabs to have 100 ohms and the copper tabs to be open except for the "position" relay, which read closed. I swapped "ignition, cruise" relay the "air pump" relay. Checked continuity at both "fuseable fuses'", both check good, although the 65 amp one under the seat had a little surface corrosion which cleaned up easily. One more thing about the relays. The one forward of the battery brass tabs only read 3 ohms. The battery looks to be fairly new, no dust on it, and the terminals look good. Put all back together and still didn't start. Took battery in for a load test and it failed immediately once the load was applied. An identical replacement battery is being ordered. Wow! That relay cover by the left saddle bag is...fun. :(


Just remove the four bolts inside the left saddlebag. Pull the saddlebag out a little bit, and you can get that cover off. The time taken removing those four bolts is worth not having to swear and strain for ages trying to get that relay cover off...and back on again!

That cover is definitely one of those "what was Honda thinking?" parts.

enjoyriding
Posts: 18
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2013 8:27 pm
Location: Derby, Kansas
Motorcycle: 1996 GL1500SE 83,000+
1980 XS1100G 101,200 sold
1976 XS650 54, 000 sold

Re: electrical issues (1996 GL1500SE)

Postby enjoyriding » Tue Oct 08, 2013 5:17 pm

I’ve purchased a new battery and installed it Thursday and the bike started right up with no issues. I waited until Monday night (4 days) to see if it would fail again. It started without issues. I put it back in the garage and will wait until Saturday before I try and start it again for another test before I let my confidence rise.
I did removed those four bolts and one included the aft lower acorn nut that holds the tool box strap bracket to… not a structure, :o then I found the true fourth bolt. The saddle bag was still a struggle to get pulled away far enough. And I’ll ditto the “What was Honda thinking?”
I appreciate the comments for troubleshooting. Can I get you guys to revisit the “position” relay having 0 ohms across the brass tabs, when the others all had 100 ohms. Except the one forward of the battery, which had only 3 ohms?
I'll let you all know if that battery is the whole fix.
On another note. I was trying to change my post title to include 1996 GL1500SE, thinking I’d save a few people some time but obviously didn’t go about that correctly.
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enjoyriding
Posts: 18
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2013 8:27 pm
Location: Derby, Kansas
Motorcycle: 1996 GL1500SE 83,000+
1980 XS1100G 101,200 sold
1976 XS650 54, 000 sold

Re: electrical issues, (1996 GL1500SE)

Postby enjoyriding » Sun Oct 13, 2013 2:40 pm

I waited the five more days and started the bike with no issues again. It sure would be nice if all it took was a battery. Thanks for the battery post artgrantz. Thanks for all the other posts.

Does anybody have any preferences over Helm, Haynes, or Clymers service manuals. Or any others that I'm not familiar with. I definitely need to get one.
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WingAdmin
Site Admin
Posts: 17045
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:16 pm
Location: Strongsville, OH
Motorcycle: 2000 GL1500 SE
1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
1989 PC800 (wife's!)
1998 XV250 Virago (sold)
2007 Aspen Sentry Trailer

Re: electrical issues, (1996 GL1500SE)

Postby WingAdmin » Sun Oct 13, 2013 3:41 pm

enjoyriding wrote:I waited the five more days and started the bike with no issues again. It sure would be nice if all it took was a battery. Thanks for the battery post artgrantz. Thanks for all the other posts.

Does anybody have any preferences over Helm, Haynes, or Clymers service manuals. Or any others that I'm not familiar with. I definitely need to get one.


The original Honda service manual is definitely the way to go. It's the one sold by Helm.

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johnvaudo
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat Sep 13, 2014 11:15 am
Location: Rocky Mount, North Carolina
Motorcycle: 1992 GL1500SE
Contact:

Re: electrical issues, (1996 GL1500SE)

Postby johnvaudo » Fri Oct 23, 2015 10:21 pm

WingAdmin wrote:
enjoyriding wrote:Finally got the fuses looked at and ohm'ed out good for continuity, all checked good. Checked the relays (left side, under seat and in front of the battery), found all the brass tabs to have 100 ohms and the copper tabs to be open except for the "position" relay, which read closed. I swapped "ignition, cruise" relay the "air pump" relay. Checked continuity at both "fuseable fuses'", both check good, although the 65 amp one under the seat had a little surface corrosion which cleaned up easily. One more thing about the relays. The one forward of the battery brass tabs only read 3 ohms. The battery looks to be fairly new, no dust on it, and the terminals look good. Put all back together and still didn't start. Took battery in for a load test and it failed immediately once the load was applied. An identical replacement battery is being ordered. Wow! That relay cover by the left saddle bag is...fun. :(


Just remove the four bolts inside the left saddlebag. Pull the saddlebag out a little bit, and you can get that cover off. The time taken removing those four bolts is worth not having to swear and strain for ages trying to get that relay cover off...and back on again!

That cover is definitely one of those "what was Honda thinking?" parts.

even easier remove the 2 screws that hold the Relay box in it slides right out.


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