1994 SE problem with fuel gauge and cruise

Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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Posts: 6
Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2016 10:28 pm
Location: Chili, Indiana
Motorcycle: 1994 GL 1500 SE 1988 GL 1500 1981 GL 1100

1994 SE problem with fuel gauge and cruise

Post by rfriedersdorf » Sat Feb 03, 2018 1:22 pm

I have a 1994 SE. The fuel gauge shows full until it gets down to about 1/4 tank, then it catches up. Also at the same time this started, my cruise quit working. It does come on but you can't set it. When you turn off the key the fuel gauge goes to empty like it is supposed to. Any ideas?

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Re: 1994 SE problem with fuel gauge and cruise

Post by Mh434 » Sat Feb 03, 2018 4:04 pm

As far as the fuel gauge is concerned, it sounds like the sender is sticking partway up through its travel. It's a mechanical sender, with a float on an arm, that pushes a contact against a sort of variable resistor. If the arm won't travel, say, more than a quarter of the way up its normal range, it will give precisely the symptom you're experiencing.

Although I haven't tried to access mine, it appears from pics on the net that the sending unit bolts through the left, vertical side of the tank adjacent to the fuel filler neck. New replacement sending units are available, and a quick glimpse seems to put them around the $50 mark.

What I would try is to remove the inspection cover/pump mount on the top of the tank (where the fuel pump is located near the rear top face of the tank) & see if I lift the pump enough so I could fish in there with a piece of coat hanger wire to see if I can lift the float arm up. It *might* even be possible to do so through the fuel filler neck, if you're VERY careful not to mess up the internal fuel pump. Look at pics on the 'net to get an idea where the float is located vs. where the pump is. That will give you an idea how long & what shape you need to make the coat hanger "fishing tool".

If you can do this, and the gauge works again, I'd run it up & down its travel range a few times then button it back up. That MIGHT be enough for a permanent fix. All it would take is a small dot of corrosion to form a "stop" for the arm, and the movement you've imparted may clear it for good.

Failing access being possible from the outside of the tank, removal of the sender would be necessary, although it doesn't look bad at all, once you get past the plastic to the tank itself. If you are forced to go this route, once the sender is out a few manual runs up & down its range will almost certainly return it to full function.

As far as the cruise system is concerned, I don't have any advice to offer personally, although there have been several discussions about that specific topic lately, and I seem to recall someone else with the same problem as yours, successfully fixed.

Keep us posted on how you make out.

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Re: 1994 SE problem with fuel gauge and cruise

Post by DaveO430 » Sat Feb 03, 2018 9:41 pm

The fuel gauge and the cruise are not connected in any way. You have 2 problems that by coincidence happened at the same time. Try pushing forward on the clutch and brake levers and pull up on the brake pedal and see if the cruise will set. After that there is a lot to diagnosing the cruise on a 1500. Usually it is one of the cancel switches.

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