relay problems?


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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jcains
Posts: 40
Joined: Sun Apr 10, 2011 5:30 pm
Location: Ashland, Ohio
Motorcycle: 1993 GL1500 Aspencade

relay problems?

Post by jcains »



To be clear, I am posting on my husbands account. He passed 4+ years ago and I am sole owner of our Wing.
It is a 93 Aspencade with a 98 engine. I'm still jcains as we both had the same initial :)
I have tried to keep the Wing clean and running. Replacement plastic is bought, painted and in place, oil is new, tires are aired, I do my best although I am not able to ride it.

Here is what is going on, what I have done (with the help of Scott's video's) and what I'm being told.
Bike started one day, then didn't. All I got was a click click clicking noise. I used a jump starter (not my car) and the bike was running. A few days later it wouldn't start and the jump starter was of no help. My brother in law also used his jump starter with no luck.
I replaced a relay located on the left side of the bike as per the video. I bought the relay via GoldwingDocs.


   Never miss a video: Subscribe to the GoldwingDocs YouTube channel today!

The bike started several times after the installation.
Several days later the bike wouldn't start and I again heard the fast click click clicking noise.
I bought another relay (aftermarket) that is located to the right side of the bike, next to the battery.
part 35851-MF5-751
No change, bike won't start, just click click clicking noise.
The battery has been checked, twice, and is ok.
I talked with the mechanics at a local bike shop. Both of the guys are telling me they think the starter is the problem. Several bike guys at work are also telling it's the starter. Guys on another site said "starter" but then was contradicted by another member.
So, I have not thrown more money into things as of yet. And even if I bought a new starter I'm fairly sure I could not change it myself. I'm a girl, I'm 70, not a mechanic.
Now I would ask your thoughts (and maybe Scott will actually chime in). I'm kinda debating on buying that first relay again and maybe, just maybe, the Wing will start?
Any help or suggestions would be welcome.
Scott!!!! I need help!!!! :)


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Rambozo
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Re: relay problems?

Post by Rambozo »

Do you have a volt meter or a test light?
jcains
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Re: relay problems?

Post by jcains »

Rambozo wrote: Tue Dec 12, 2023 8:37 pm Do you have a volt meter or a test light?
I believe Jack had a volt meter in his tool stash. Not sure about a test light.
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WingAdmin
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Re: relay problems?

Post by WingAdmin »

It really depends on where the clicking is coming from. On the right side of the bike, there are two starter relays, A and B:

Starter Relay A
Starter Relay A


Starter Relay B
Starter Relay B

When you press the starter button, it engages starter relay A, which in turn engages starter relay B, which then sends power to the starter.

Can you tell which (or both) of these are clicking? You can put your finger on the relay (it's safe, you won't get shocked) while you press the starter to feel whether it is clicking or not.

Does it just click once when you press the starter, or does it click repeatedly as long as you hold it down? If it does so repeatedly, how fast does it happen (how many times per second - just a guess)?
jcains
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Re: relay problems?

Post by jcains »

WingAdmin wrote: Wed Dec 13, 2023 4:04 pm It really depends on where the clicking is coming from. On the right side of the bike, there are two starter relays, A and B:

Starter Relay A.jpg
Starter Relay B.jpg

When you press the starter button, it engages starter relay A, which in turn engages starter relay B, which then sends power to the starter.

Can you tell which (or both) of these are clicking? You can put your finger on the relay (it's safe, you won't get shocked) while you press the starter to feel whether it is clicking or not.

Does it just click once when you press the starter, or does it click repeatedly as long as you hold it down? If it does so repeatedly, how fast does it happen (how many times per second - just a guess)?
Scott you are such a dear to come to try to help me. Thank you!
At the moment I have the battery out of the bike, on a tender, but before I took it out, I believe the clicking was coming from the right side of the bike but don't know exact location. It's a repeating click as long as I hold the starter button. Never thought to touch anything so that will be something I do. I think Jack has some kind of stethoscope that he used to track down noises so that might be an option too.
It's been cold in the barn but I'll try to get the battery back in the bike in the next day or two. And maybe I can even do a video to catch the sound.
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Re: relay problems?

Post by WingAdmin »

If it's clicking continually, that's usually an indication of a bad battery - it might test good when not under load, but as soon as you load it down, it's going to drop the voltage so far that everything stops working.

I would either have a local auto parts store load test the battery (they will normally do this for free) or put the battery in the bike and put a voltmeter on the battery, then watch to see how low the voltage goes when you press the starter button.
jcains
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Re: relay problems?

Post by jcains »

Nothing would make me happier if it was just the battery. It was actually the very first thing I wanted to do but got talked out of it by some well meaning people. It was tested by my auto mechanic and Oreillys, both saying it was good but both also said "it should" be good concerning the load. Maybe not.

The power went out a few days ago so the battery was off the tender and didn't have enough power to do anything so I'll try that again tomorrow...
however...
I noticed the relay labeled MAIN FUSE A 30 AMP in the graphic you posted is not connecting tightly. There is tiny plastic clip that holds the relay in place, one little clip on each side. One clip is missing and the other just doesn't want to clip tightly. When I thought it was connected as good as could be, I turned on the key, hit the starter button, heard a click and I felt what I would call a vibration (?) in that relay. For sure, I would say that has to be fixed, might be part of the problem. It was an aftermarket relay. I still have the old one and I might put that back in to check the connection.

So, when I can get back out to the bike, maybe tomorrow depending on our Ohio weather, I'll try things again. And I'll check with the volt meter, if I can figure that out.

What an experience and education I am getting :)
jcains
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Re: relay problems?

Post by jcains »

I got frustrated last night, didn't sleep but got back at it this morning.
This pic is of the tender, hooked to the battery overnight, that was installed in the bike. The volt meter I have looks like it needs to be replaced and I have no idea how to even use the thing. I have not been able to try to start the bike as I am working on that relay (see next picture)


This is the broken piece I referred to. This red piece will not fit securely on the green piece. It seems too big although it fit perfectly on the old relay. I'm figuring aftermarket isn't the same as OEM.


So I am thinking and you can tell me if it's right or wrong... I need to buy an OEM relay before I go any further. Or do I put the old back on the bike, reinstall the battery and go from there? Like starting from scratch.
jcains
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Re: relay problems?

Post by jcains »

Just an update:
I finally got this relay put together properly although it is still the aftermarket item.


Put everything back together and hooked up, minus the plastic.
The bike actually tried to start.

I tried to check the battery with the volt meter I have and now I understand why Jack got frustrated trying to use it, the lead wires are useless (((why didn't he just go buy another?)))
I bought a new battery. Got it hooked up and just a click noise.
I touched the relay (above) while hitting the start button and felt a movement or something going on in that relay and I don't know if I should be feeling anything. Touched the relay labeled as MAIN FUSE B and I did not feel anything with that.
So... I think the good news is... since it tried to start, actually tried to turn over... it isn't the starter that's the problem.
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Re: relay problems?

Post by WingAdmin »

Was the new battery fully charged? They often aren't, and you will get just a "click" if it doesn't have sufficient charge to crank the engine.
jcains
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Re: relay problems?

Post by jcains »

That is something I did not know to even check or ask about. I assumed it wasn't the problem and took the battery back. I will make a call or drop by the store on Tuesday and ask. The old battery is on the tender but in our Ohio weather I just can't get out to the barn and work too long.

I am almost to the point of giving up. It's beyond my capabilities which was very limited to begin with. :(
jcains
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Re: relay problems?

Post by jcains »

I dropped by the parts store today. They physically checked the particular battery that I had purchased and "yes" it comes fully charged. To be clear, the battery I purchased was fully enclosed, I did not have to add any acid, it came ready to install.
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aj1500
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Re: relay problems?

Post by aj1500 »

something worth checking, I had this happen to my 1500. pull back the black cover that is on the red plug at your relay and inspect the wires going in the plug good, mine had gotten hot a few times and was melting inside the plug, you couldn't really see it unless you removed the cover. I ended up having to cut the wires and install new ends and plug them back into the relay and all was golden again.
jcains
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Re: relay problems?

Post by jcains »

aj1500 wrote: Thu Jan 04, 2024 10:34 am something worth checking, I had this happen to my 1500. pull back the black cover that is on the red plug at your relay and inspect the wires going in the plug good, mine had gotten hot a few times and was melting inside the plug, you couldn't really see it unless you removed the cover. I ended up having to cut the wires and install new ends and plug them back into the relay and all was golden again.
Thank you so much for the reply. I'll be checking that.
My brother is getting in rouch with someone local that might be able to resolve my issue and I'll be sure to let him know what has been suggested throughout this thread.

I think, once it's running again, I will sell the bike. I made a promise to keep it running, take care of it but it's beyond my capabilities. :(
but first things first.... get it running.


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