06 R1200GS Battery Warning Light is ON...

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by LaurelPerryOnLand, Jun 27, 2011.

  1. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    Battery Warning Light is now ON.

    Checked battery and had only 12.06 volts...charged on Battery Tender all day yesterday until the GREEN light on the charger came on. (FULLY CHARGED).

    Installed this morning. First time that I started it for a very short time...no warning light.

    Couple hours later...my nemesis is back. WARNING LIGHT reappears on the panel.


    My diagnosis/guess:
    Yes...have RTFM...Page 26...says "Battery is Not being charged."

    Suspect that BATTERY is not being charged by Alternator? Why?
    Perhaps a broken or loose belt?

    Before I start an afternoon of fun with the ALTERNATOR cover removal...anyone else have a hint?

    Thanks.
    #1
  2. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    Make sure your battery light doesn't go out when reved a bit. If it does, don't sweat it. If it doesn't you should first check all your cables to make sure of a good connection. Then check your battery without load, and check it when you crank it. If it is above 12.5, then drops below 10 when starting, bad battery.

    Once running you should get 14+ once you are above 1500-2000 rpm.

    Jim :brow
    #2
  3. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    JVB,

    Thanks for the reply.

    No Load BEFORE STARTING...nothing switched on... 12.49
    When starting = 9.96
    Ongoing after start = 11.90 Agree with your 14+ should be value. (probably the low voltage level that triggers the warning light, right?)

    Took the Alternator Cover off...belt is not broken does not appear to be loose. Put a mark on the belt and the belt is changing position.

    Diagnosis: Head for the battery store?
    #3
  4. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    Does the light go out if you rev the bike a bit?

    It is looking like the battery. How old is it?

    Jim :brow
    #4
  5. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    Light doesn't go out when rev.

    YUASA YTX14-BS purchased on 5/3/2010...exactly 1 month or so out of warranty.

    Have a new battery...installing now.
    #5
  6. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    Jim,

    Installed NEW Battery.

    Secured all connections at battery.

    When turning on the ignition switch...bike goes through start up routine without errors (except for the usual Brake Failure...I understand that part).

    When STARTING the bike...immediately get the RED WARNING Triangle and the Battery symbol.

    Stats: When running...rev'd at approx 1500 rpms...12.17 volts...so it appears that it STILL isn't charging. Agree? Disagree?

    What else to look at?

    Owners manual says: "If the battery is no longer charged, continued driving can lead to deep discharging and the destruction of the battery. If possible, do not continue driving".

    Thanks.
    #6
  7. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    Yeah, sounds like the battery is OK, yes new, but the charging system is not working. If you have access to a testing unit is is just like a car alternator to test. They may be able to test it on the bike.

    If you keep all extras off you can safely ride it about 15-20 minutes, but minimal use of the brakes as the servos suck a lot of power.

    Removing the alternator is a bit of a pain, the tank has to come off, but you can do it and take the alternator in.

    www.beemerboneyard.com may have an alternator. Good time to upgrade to a 60 amp alternator. E-mail or call. Mike goes through a lot of parts, so his web site is not always up to date.

    Jim :brow
    #7
  8. island808

    island808 We are 100% SNAFU

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    Did I miss it.. was the cover ever checked to see if the belt is even on?
    #8
  9. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    Yes, I've removed the cover and the belt is on. Turns...can't confirm that it doesn't slip.
    Took for a ride and after a short ride...warning light / battery icon went out...maybe after the belt 'warmed up'? Still not consistently charging.

    Replacing belt this morning. May have stretched. Bike has 24,000 on it which coincidentally is the new service recommendation.
    #9
  10. ragtoplvr

    ragtoplvr Long timer

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    These alternators have a clutch pulley, these often fail on cars. much more often than Bosch alternators. One would assume that bikes would have the same issues. Take alternator off and take to a local alternator re-builder, not an auto parts store. They should be able to fix it for you much less than a new one.

    Here is a link to a web site where you might be able to find a local rebuilder if google fails you.

    http://www.apra.org/directory/default.asp

    Good luck.

    Rod
    #10
  11. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    Replaced the Alternator Belt with a NEW one this morning.

    Drats...no such luck...WARNING LIGHT & ICON are still present.

    BTW: The NEW belt was about 1/4-3/16" SHORTER than the USED one...(old one apparently stretched)...which is what I was hoping for...that it was SLIPPING, but so such luck.

    Thanks for the rebuilding avenue. I'll remove Alternator (geez...this is going to be one fun afternoon) and take it some place locally.
    #11
  12. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    Talk about 'getting to know your bike'...sheesh.

    I finally got the ALTERNATOR removed.

    Had to remove fuel tank...
    unleash some of the brain units from their plastic housings
    remove the alternator belt
    remove the plastic cover on the front of the alternator
    remove the front shock

    and voila...the ALTERNATOR slides straight forward and O-U-T.

    I actually have it in my hands...hurrah.:clap
    So...it can be done by mere mortals.

    And...most importantly...I have taken pictures of each step and will be producing a "How to REMOVE your R1200GS Alternator pictorial" in the days ahead when I've successfully completed this project.:clap

    UPDATE: Here's the "How to REMOVE your Alternator" link:
    http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=703446


    Lucky you...who wants to/has to remove their alternator.:rofl
    My payback for everything I've learned here at ADV.

    Next Step
    Source replacement or rebuild unit.

    More to come... :lurk
    #12
  13. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    It appears that the Denso 40A alternator was proprietarily built for BMW and local shops that typically rebuild alternators simply can't get the parts needed to rebuild the alternator.

    Also...there are a number of issues to consider if you're thinking about upgrading to a 60A unit. Connectors aren't compatible...just too many weeds to go swimming in. 40A should be fine.

    So...BeemerBoneYard.com (Mike) came through with a USED unit off an 05 R1200GS that he was parting out. Not cheap...but less than a NEW one.

    Scheduled to arrive in a few days and the INSTALLATION process can continue. Can hardly wait. Having fun.

    Anybody know where this bolt goes? Hah.:rofl

    Should be fine.

    Thanks to all who have contributed to this trek.

    More to come. :lurker
    #13
  14. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    For those of you who have been following along...today's episode begins with the delivery of the USED Alternator (40A...R1200) replacement.

    And as every good novelist knows...a story that doesn't have a twist or turn in it isn't worth telling.

    So...

    I open the box from BBYard and voila...a replacement alternator that looks like the 'bad' one I'm trying to replace. Checked size, bolt locations, etc. Yep, it's a match.

    Spent the next 2 hours reinstalling the alternator, the two brains units, the NEW alternator belt, the tank with all of it's six fittings..

    And NOW is the MOMENT of TRUTH. Kill switch is ON. Ignition switch is ON. I don't see any RED WARNING light and BATTERY icon. So far...so good.
    Hit the START button and...and....and....that RED WARNING light and the BATTERY icon are still there. Geez...my emotions sunk lower than a snake's belly. Holy cow...how could this be? New battery, new alternator belt and now a 'new-ish' alternator. And it doesn't work?

    I actually thought that perhaps the new-ish alternator was bad. But, after coming to my senses, I realized the odds of it being 'bad' were about the same as me winning the Powerball.

    What the heck to I do now.

    What did JVB first say? Check your connections. Hmm...so I check them one more time only to realize they were tight.

    This is an electrical problem. So I check every fuse on the Centech. Check every fuse on other accessories that I've added. All is A-OK.

    What have I done recently that was electrical? Swim backwards upstream when things were hunky dory. Geez....I did just install some high visibility brake lights.

    Then, staring at me BIG AS LIFE was a Posi-Tap that I tapped into the Power (Green/Blue wire) of the Diagnostic Plug. My instinct said...unscrew that wire and see what happens.

    OK...you're ahead of me. Yep, the RED WARNING light and BATTERY icon vanished into thin air when I re-started. Yeah...but is the alternator actually charging the battery...this is what I want to know. While the bike was running checking the battery terminals and voila...14.xx volts!

    Geez, Louise. It was the wrong place to connect to power. The high visibility brake lights DID WORK and flash appropriately...but also affected the output of the alternator...resulting in the RED WARNING light and the BATTERY icon.

    I left the wire disconnected and will start trying to figure out where I went wrong on the wiring tomorrow.

    But for tonight...the bike is all back together...I actually took it for a short ride and everything (minus the high visi brake light) is working!!!

    In hindsight...I hadn't successfully ridden with the RWL and Battery icon AFTER installing the high vis brake light.

    Moral of this story:
    1. Be careful of the 'trail' you attempt to resolve...new battery, new alternator belt, new-ish alternator. It seemed reasonable at the time.

    2. And, I guess that I had to go down this trail BEFORE I realized this was an ELECTRICAL problem I was trying to solve. I'm just not that smart.

    3. Also...always be mindful of things you've recently done that may be affecting your NEW PROBLEM.

    So, while the bike's now a little over the 24,000 mile level the new battery and alternator belt weren't wasted money.

    BUT...I do have an extra 40A alternator...should I ever need one, again.

    Life is good. Bike works. Going to sleep.
    #14
  15. SpEd

    SpEd Purposeless life has its advantages.

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    Great story LPOL. You've got more huevos than me to tackle something like this. Maybe one day but not today for sure. I can't wait to see your documentation of the event. I'm sure I'll learn something.
    #15
  16. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    The blue/green wire on the diagnostic plug is fine for a signal voltage for something like a relay, but I wouldn't power anything off of it.

    Sorry you went through all this, but at least we now know what happens when you put a real draw on the wire.

    Glad you go it all worked out.

    Jim :brow
    #16
  17. LaurelPerryOnLand

    LaurelPerryOnLand Long timer

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    Jim,

    Got that wire for the high visibility brake lights now properly connected to my Centech AP-2 (switched power) and life is good.

    Actually, I enjoyed getting to know the bike (perhaps a little more than I had expected) but overall I think I've seen places on the bike that I didn't even know existed.:clap

    It isn't as 'scary' as previously thought.
    #17
  18. Snow D

    Snow D n00b

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    just had the same problem, bike stopped shortly after warning light came on.

    I was trying to get to the next service station before it did anything silly and got within 500m of one.

    Found what I thought was the problem, a loose battery terminal.
    The guy at the station let me use his charger cause the battery wouldn't crank the motor, that got me home and no warning lights.

    Then an interest thing happened........

    I charged the battery fully, replaced the accessory leads that run the spot lights, direct from battery via a relay, and switched the bike on.
    Surprise surprise, battery warning light on.

    Came inside and googled the problem, found your post, went straight outside and removed the spotlight leads and the warning was gone. Apparently due to the heavy rain I'd just been through some water had entered switch and done the damage.

    THANKS FOR SAVING ME FROM ALL YOU WENT THROUGH!!:freaky

    Snow D
    #18
  19. skidlid

    skidlid Been here awhile

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    So with the Skene P3 brake lights...... when I ordered them I received a small manual and a TS control Module(IQ-160-TS) that shows how to connect them to your rear BRAKE LIGHT.

    The bike is an '06 1200 Adventure, so it does have the CANBUS. I'm assuming that since this isn't being connected to the Control Module that all should be Kosher. Anybody?

    Thanks,

    Dave
    #19
  20. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    Not an issue. If you get stuck contact Jerry. He is very responsive.

    Jim :brow
    #20