Neutral light flashes on then stays off, bike won't start


Information and questions on GL1800 Goldwings (2001-2017)
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Sgiac
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat May 02, 2020 8:57 am
Location: Ontario
Motorcycle: 1999 GL1800, 2003 GL1800

Neutral light flashes on then stays off, bike won't start

Post by Sgiac »



2003 GL1800 ABS, 140K
Bike was working fine, sat over the Ontario winter but now won't start. The battery is good (was on a tender inside).
When I turn the key to the on position, the neutral light flashes on then remains off and initially there was a buzzing/clicking sound coming from the 16A Tail relay under the seat. There is no evidence of power to the dash and none of the accessories work (horn, lights...)

I removed the noisy relay and tried again but despite the absence of clicking, there is no improvement.

I tried swapping relays of the same specs (omron G8H-UA-007609 2372A13 B) and the clicking went away so I swapped it back. The clicking is gone but the neutral light/no start condition persists.

So, if 1 or more relays are bad will the bike start or is there some kind of safety feature that prevents this? (and presents the current condition?)

Can anyone give me instructions to check these relays? Does Scott sell these relays or just those for the GL1100? (I watched his youtube video)

Thanks in advance for anyone who can help!


Techdude2000
Posts: 341
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 10:11 pm
Location: Lexington, KY
Motorcycle: 2004 GL1800

Re: Neutral light flashes on then stays off, bike won't start

Post by Techdude2000 »

It’s not the relays. Put a voltmeter on the battery terminals and turn on the key, what is the voltage you read before and after you turn on the key? Check the posts for corrosion as well. The symptom you are describing is a bad battery with only a surface charge that quickly dies when loaded with the bike’s system.
Sgiac
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat May 02, 2020 8:57 am
Location: Ontario
Motorcycle: 1999 GL1800, 2003 GL1800

Re: Neutral light flashes on then stays off, bike won't start

Post by Sgiac »

You're all absolutely right. The battery read 12v but I didn't have a way to do a draw test so... Why I didn't suspect the battery in the first place has to do with the fact that it's 2 seasons old (and the battery tender). Boosted with my truck battery and the display sprung to life. So, back to the basics: "Always start with the simple solutions."

Could it be that the relay chattered because of the low current?

Thank you. Help much appreciated!
Techdude2000
Posts: 341
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 10:11 pm
Location: Lexington, KY
Motorcycle: 2004 GL1800

Re: Neutral light flashes on then stays off, bike won't start

Post by Techdude2000 »

Sgiac wrote: Mon Jun 01, 2020 10:39 am You're all absolutely right. The battery read 12v but I didn't have a way to do a draw test so... Why I didn't suspect the battery in the first place has to do with the fact that it's 2 seasons old (and the battery tender). Boosted with my truck battery and the display sprung to life. So, back to the basics: "Always start with the simple solutions."

Could it be that the relay chattered because of the low current?

Thank you. Help much appreciated!
Low voltage will make them chatter. If you watched the battery voltage when you turned on the key, it was probably dropping down below 10V when the whole FI system and lighting circuits loaded it.
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tamathumper
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Location: Charlotte, NC
Motorcycle: 2003 GL1800A

Re: Neutral light flashes on then stays off, bike won't start

Post by tamathumper »

Time to test that battery tender's output to make sure it's not cooking batteries.
'03 GL1800A - Warning: fopen() [function.fopen]: failed to open stream: Sense of humor not found on line 2
Sgiac
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat May 02, 2020 8:57 am
Location: Ontario
Motorcycle: 1999 GL1800, 2003 GL1800

Re: Neutral light flashes on then stays off, bike won't start

Post by Sgiac »

Tamathumper, good call. The voltage was slightly over 12 (not 13.2). The tender was quite warm to the touch. I have no way to know how many amps it was charging at but I do have suspicions that it was too high.
Techdude2000
Posts: 341
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 10:11 pm
Location: Lexington, KY
Motorcycle: 2004 GL1800

Re: Neutral light flashes on then stays off, bike won't start

Post by Techdude2000 »

Sgiac wrote: Tue Jun 02, 2020 4:33 pm Tamathumper, good call. The voltage was slightly over 12 (not 13.2). The tender was quite warm to the touch. I have no way to know how many amps it was charging at but I do have suspicions that it was too high.
If the voltage on it while connected to a good battery doesn’t go over 14.5, it’s probably fine. Normal charging voltage for a tender is between 13 and 14.5V. To test it, hook up a known good battery that needs a little charge and monitor the voltage. It should jump up to around 14 and then quickly drop back down to the high 13s until the battery is just about fully charged and then it should stay around the 13.1-13.2V to maintain, but not cook it. Make sure your cable ends are good and clean on both sides of the mounting lugs.
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tamathumper
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Motorcycle: 2003 GL1800A

Re: Neutral light flashes on then stays off, bike won't start

Post by tamathumper »

If it's a Battery Tender Jr., one of the capacitors might be failing, and then Google and YouTube are your friend for how to fix it. ;)
'03 GL1800A - Warning: fopen() [function.fopen]: failed to open stream: Sense of humor not found on line 2
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WingAdmin
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Re: Neutral light flashes on then stays off, bike won't start

Post by WingAdmin »

Lead acid batteries must receive at least 2.1 volts per cell (so for a six-cell 12v battery, that's 12.6 volts) in order to charge at all. Ideally, the charge voltage should be 13.8 volts, which is why most automotive regulators are regulated to 13.8 volts.

The Battery Tender, once the battery is charged, will shut down almost entirely, but will start up periodically.


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