Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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zeoran
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Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by zeoran »



I've read the posts that go into details about checking the sensor, floats, etc., even swapping out the thermistor. But before I go digging that deep, I was wondering (and hoping) that was a simpler possible solution as to why the light didn't come on recently as it should have when I was out of gas. It's come on once before when I was low, so it has worked since I bought the bike but on Tuesday, I knew I was low and was trying to make it to the gas station. I hadn't seen the light come on, so I thought I was OK, but she ran out literally 50' from the offramp where the gas station is.

The light still comes on when I start the bike, so I know the bulb itself is good. Is there a simple problem I can check or will this require tearing things apart, getting out the service manual and my dvm?

God bless,

~Mark



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4given
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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by 4given »

There are a number of threads which address this issue on this forum. Basically if you remove the seat and unhook the feed wire to the low fuel sensor or thermistor and run it to ground, the light should come on. If it doesn’t it is an indication that the thermistor is faulty.

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Erdeniz Umman
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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by Erdeniz Umman »

Here is the related page in the service manual.
Note that it takes approximately 3 minutes after 1 gallon left.
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MikeB
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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by MikeB »

zeoran wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 1:39 pm
I've read the posts that go into details about checking the sensor, floats, etc., even swapping out the thermistor. But before I go digging that deep, I was wondering (and hoping) that was a simpler possible solution as to why the light didn't come on recently as it should have when I was out of gas. It's come on once before when I was low, so it has worked since I bought the bike but on Tuesday, I knew I was low and was trying to make it to the gas station. I hadn't seen the light come on, so I thought I was OK, but she ran out literally 50' from the offramp where the gas station is.

The light still comes on when I start the bike, so I know the bulb itself is good. Is there a simple problem I can check or will this require tearing things apart, getting out the service manual and my dvm?

God bless,

~Mark
You didn't say so I am a bit curious, did you fill the tank and how much fuel did it take?
As you probably already know, the tank has a 6.3 gallon capacity.
Did it start and run normally after getting fuel?
If you didn't fill the tank, how much fuel did you add? The fuel gauge on my '98 will indicate 1/2 full when there is about 3.5 gallons in the tank.
You should get about 180 miles on a full tank of fuel before the low fuel light comes on.
MikeB
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wezx
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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by wezx »

Mine also doesn’t light when I feel like it should...but I’ve never ran out of gas either LOL Bulb is good. I carry a spare small emergency fuel container in my saddle bag so I just haven’t cared enough to dig into it, but thanks for that info on checking it! Next time I have the seat off I’ll do some testing...

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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by MikeB »

wezx wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 11:19 pm
Mine also doesn’t light when I feel like it should...but I’ve never ran out of gas either LOL Bulb is good. I carry a spare small emergency fuel container in my saddle bag so I just haven’t cared enough to dig into it, but thanks for that info on checking it! Next time I have the seat off I’ll do some testing...
If you do dig into it, be sure you have less than a half tank of fuel. Otherwise, you will have a bit of fuel spill on your hands when you start to remove the pump assembly.
MikeB
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wezx
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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by wezx »

MikeB wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 11:51 pm
wezx wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 11:19 pm
Mine also doesn’t light when I feel like it should...but I’ve never ran out of gas either LOL Bulb is good. I carry a spare small emergency fuel container in my saddle bag so I just haven’t cared enough to dig into it, but thanks for that info on checking it! Next time I have the seat off I’ll do some testing...
If you do dig into it, be sure you have less than a half tank of fuel. Otherwise, you will have a bit of fuel spill on your hands when you start to remove the pump assembly.
Cool...thanks for the tip!

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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by MikeB »

So, what happened to the original poster? Did he get his problem sorted out? I'd love to know what the outcome was.
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zeoran
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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by zeoran »

Sorry for the late reply...things have been chaotic recently.

I haven't had a chance to take off the seat and check the wiring as indicated in a previous post.

Since the light isn't working properly, I've been refueling on a more conservative basis, not letting it get low again. (although it did get really low once and the light still didn't come on) The light still comes on every time I turn the key to start the bike, so I know the bulb still works fine.

The time when it ran out of gas, I walked to the gas station that was just at the bottom of the offramp, bought a gallon of water to get a usable container cheap and then filled it with gas and poured that into the bike gas tank. Even with just that little amount of gas, the light didn't come on and she started fine. I replaced the fuel filter between when the light worked and it didn't, but I can't think of any reason that would make a difference. I have done a lot of work on the bike since I bought it, I've taken the seat of multiple times and installed rear speakers and done other maintenance and replacement. I'll check that wire this weekend. I have new braided lines for the brakes that I need to find time to install soon. (they're still very mushy with not good stopping power, even though the pads have more than 50% left)

I hope everyone is doing well and staying safe.

God bless,

~Mark

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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by MikeB »

zeoran wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:08 am
Sorry for the late reply...things have been chaotic recently.

I haven't had a chance to take off the seat and check the wiring as indicated in a previous post.

Since the light isn't working properly, I've been refueling on a more conservative basis, not letting it get low again. (although it did get really low once and the light still didn't come on) The light still comes on every time I turn the key to start the bike, so I know the bulb still works fine.

The time when it ran out of gas, I walked to the gas station that was just at the bottom of the offramp, bought a gallon of water to get a usable container cheap and then filled it with gas and poured that into the bike gas tank. Even with just that little amount of gas, the light didn't come on and she started fine. I replaced the fuel filter between when the light worked and it didn't, but I can't think of any reason that would make a difference. I have done a lot of work on the bike since I bought it, I've taken the seat of multiple times and installed rear speakers and done other maintenance and replacement. I'll check that wire this weekend. I have new braided lines for the brakes that I need to find time to install soon. (they're still very mushy with not good stopping power, even though the pads have more than 50% left)

I hope everyone is doing well and staying safe.

God bless,

~Mark
You may have just dislodged the connector when you were doing other work on the bike.


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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by wezx »

Well, I THOUGHT my light wasn’t working, but in fact it is! I ran the gas way down below the red line and it still didn’t come on, so I filled up and it only took 4.8 gallons, meaning I still had 1.3 in the tank and it doesn’t trigger until 1.1. Soooo....I ran it WAY WAY down to where I really thought I was gonna run out it was so far below the “E” red line (I have a spare fuel bottle always with me) and sure enough, the light came on!

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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by zeoran »

I finally got a chance to take the seat apart and check the blue-white cable. The light comes on when I first turn on the ignition, it comes on when I short the blue-white cable. The connection seemed solid enough, so I'm not convinced that it was 'loose' and that was causing it to fail. I know that the low fuel light came on properly since I bought the bike last March, but it hasn't come on the last few times the gas has been really low, including the time when I completely ran out. I won't know if that status has changed until I run it low again which likely won't happen for a couple of days. I'll update when I know.

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Re: Low Fuel Light Not Lighting - Bulb OK

Post by WingAdmin »

zeoran wrote:
Sun Jul 05, 2020 5:43 pm
I finally got a chance to take the seat apart and check the blue-white cable. The light comes on when I first turn on the ignition, it comes on when I short the blue-white cable. The connection seemed solid enough, so I'm not convinced that it was 'loose' and that was causing it to fail. I know that the low fuel light came on properly since I bought the bike last March, but it hasn't come on the last few times the gas has been really low, including the time when I completely ran out. I won't know if that status has changed until I run it low again which likely won't happen for a couple of days. I'll update when I know.
The thermistors in the fuel tank that activate the low fuel light are a common failure item, and are not too difficult to replace.



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