990 Adventure dying, cutting out, over-heating

Discussion in 'Crazy-Awesome almost Dakar racers (950/990cc)' started by jtw000, Dec 15, 2011.

  1. jtw000

    jtw000 Survivor

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    I'm looking on behalf of a friend. We were travelling together but he's now off on the last leg of his trip and the bike is playing up rotten. While riding together it started "choking" as he put it. It was like the power was running out, an air blockage maybe or dead plugs. As it got hotter it seemed to get worse, stuck in traffic it would barely stay running. It cut out, spluttered, lost all power and then just died. We couldn't find anything wrong then it would start and run and then as it got hotter, it just did it again.
    When we got to Bangkok it had a full service. They put it on the diagnostic and nothing wrong. I was suspicious but the bike ran fine after they cleaned it up, we hoped it was just a lot of dirt in the radiator. Now once he put the panniers on it did it again. At first we were stuck in traffic in bangkok so I thought maybe it was that but he swore it was the boxes. Possible I guess, they block airflow to the exhaust where the O2 sensor is.
    Now he's right back to square 1. It's cutting out even when not in traffic. Once the weather cools or he drives in rain it gets better. He has bridged a circuit over the temperature sensor and said it helped a bit but only the rain and riding in the night when it's cooler keeps the bike moving.
    Does this sound like anything anyone recognises? I'm not a KTM man and not familiar. Thanks guys.
    #1
  2. catalina38

    catalina38 Long timer

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    Fuel filters
    #2
  3. EastSideSM

    EastSideSM Isn't that dangerous?

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    Fuel filter, could also be signs of a dying fuel pump.
    #3
  4. slowinfastout

    slowinfastout Halfway to nowhere in particular

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    Don't overlook something as simple as a clogged air filter. That has all the tale-tale signs of that being the case. Pull the existing air filter out of the bike and see if it runs clean. If it does, there's your answer.

    Could also be the temp sensor gone bad....but that should have shown up in a scan (air filters normally will not)

    Its definitely not the panniers causing engine running issues.
    #4
  5. BoulderGuy

    BoulderGuy out ridin'....

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    Fist things I would look for would be dirty air filter, clogged fuel filters in the petcocks, clogged fuel filter in the fuel pump, pinched/clogged tank vents or dying fuel pump. Good luck!
    #5
  6. DeepInIt

    DeepInIt Long timer

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    Also check that fuel lines aren't kinking. In heat, they are more supple and close off if you have a bend with pressure on it.
    #6
  7. slowinfastout

    slowinfastout Halfway to nowhere in particular

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    +1 on the pinched vent lines. If you have a pinched vac line from the tank (they route to the two upper fairings by the headlights, one on each side) the bike will run for a bit then shut off entirely.
    #7
  8. jtw000

    jtw000 Survivor

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    We stripped it down in India in a field, fuel filters are missing completely out of the fuel pump, according to the book it was mean to have one there if I remember right. Air filter was clean and tidy, fuel lines were all straight and fuel feed seemed very good.
    We dosed her up on redex and only ran her on super fuel but nothing helped. She limped on when the temperature dropped. In Nepal the mountain road to Kathmandu was quite cool and no problems but once we got to Kathmandu on the road to the airport for shipping the temperature rose and we were stuck in traffic. We ended up having to push, there was no way it would run. I didn't see how it could be the boxes, to be honest.
    If it makes any difference, the night it started there was another issue. We were lost in a little nowhere town looking for a hotel and suddenly the bike died. It just cut out and lost all electrical power. We had to tow it. We removed the battery and charged it and it started fine the next morning but wouldn't charge again and died once more. So we fitted cables to the battery and jumped it off my bike every time it stalled and after three or four jumps it started charging and ran itself. No idea why, we forgot about that as we had bigger problems. Related maybe?
    Lots of votes for the fuel pump, is it a common fault? I've had FP issues on other bikes, especially an Aprillia but they just killed the bike, never loss of power like this. Is this typical symptoms of a failing pump on KTM?
    #8
  9. extremusski

    extremusski Adventurer

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    hello.
    my bike had this problem 3 years ago. Exactly the same . ktm dealer didn't find anything wrong-cecked everything-filtres, pump etc. after i got back in traffic it started to do the same. i have gone back and the only thing dealer did to my bike was to do a remap. after that it never do a problem again. i mention i have an ktm 990 2006.
    good luke with your bike.
    #9
  10. japslap

    japslap Japslap

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    The battery failing in these bikes seems to cause all sorts of wierd probs,id change it for a new one imho.
    #10
  11. BoulderGuy

    BoulderGuy out ridin'....

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    Hmmmm....Could be related to the battery. Try a different battery if that's an option. Electricity conducts better when it's cold, not as well when it's hot. I'd check the battery terminals as well as the terminals at the main fuse relay under the right side of the skidplate. I've had some wierd stuff happen when those came loose or were corroded. Also, I had the contacts under the key go South once and the bike would cut out here and there. More so when it was hot. When it's running poorly/ not running try turning the key just a tiny bit to the left to see if the contacts under the key make a better connection. On mine I could turn the key just a tiny bit to the left and it would run. When the key was fully turned to the the right it would die, but only when it was hot. It's possible to pull that assembly under the key apart and clean it if you are REAL careful. Before you try pulling it apart, try tugging on the wires coming out from under the key a bit while it's running and see if the bike does anything wierd. When you tug on those wires or mess with the key does the bike stutter? Does it shut off? Does the headlight turn off or flicker? It took me 6 months to figure out those contacts under the key were causing all my issues. It drove me crazy! Good luck.
    #11
  12. Holaday

    Holaday Man of Leisure

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    Ive had problems twice with my 990 that were similar to what you describe. I think its from running in technical terrain or stop and go traffic and the fan is running constantly and you are at lower rpm's so the battery is not charging, eventually the on bike computer isn't getting enough power and the bike starts running poorly. I'm gonna try installing a euro headlight switch and turn the headlight off when riding slow technical stuff.
    #12
  13. jtw000

    jtw000 Survivor

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    Well against my better judgement he swapped out the headlight bulb for an LED. It throws no light but it uses no power either so turning it shouldn't have made any difference. My guess is that the terminals weren't tight enough and he dislodged and fixed the problem inadvertently while he was bodging on a constant jump start circuit. My logical brain says the two are related but I just don't feel like they are.
    #13
  14. Werdus Smith

    Werdus Smith Operator

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    I am having the exact same problems on my bike. It is driving me insane. IF you`re friend manages to sort out the problems on his bike, I will be most curious to know what he did, so I`m following this thread closely.

    ( Any KTM mechanics out there somewhere who has any solid advice ? )
    #14
  15. men8ifr

    men8ifr Been here awhile

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    Sounds like it could be electrical, check the voltage with the bike running and hot where the problem occurrs (should get upto 14v) and with the engine stopped (should be 12.5 to 13.5v as long as the battery has had a little while to charge on the bike). Also some wierd problems on a 690 were traced to the voltage spiking, use a peak hold multimeter and leave it connected for quite a while to see if this shows up any high voltages (above 15.5v).

    Is it slow to crank and start?

    Maybe one of the spark plug coil packs is breaking down with heat? measure the resistance (hopefully some-one can tell you what it should be) Maybe check the condition of the spark plugs (or at least the rear one (easy to get to) and see if that gives you any clues (too lean/rich?)
    #15
  16. Peanuts

    Peanuts Long timer

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    ^^ Based on the above.....doing a 15 minute idle will reset the ECU, might be worth trying?
    #16
  17. AdvGa

    AdvGa Long timer

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  18. RoundOz

    RoundOz Plenty of seasoning

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    There are 2 fuel filters on the fuel pump, one on suction and one on delivery - I personally wouldnt run the bike without them. There are 2 filters in bottom (front) of the tanks. these both filter the fuel going from the right tank into the left (they do nothing for the fuel you put into the left tank, as that is where the fuel pump resides. Anything going through the pump because the filters are missing will end up in the filters on the injectors. These would probably require replacement or at the very least would need cleaning on an injector machine.

    My bike had what sounds like identical symptoms at about 5000 miles - missing and dying on very hot days, or moderately hot days with slow riding. It got worse and worse until I had to limp it home about 25 miles. I found the pump filters to be relatively clean looking except that the cylindrical filter was badly made form the factory - there was a hole big enough between the pleats and the metal base to allow crap to pass through and some of the glue used to cement the paper to the metal was floating around inside. I was sure some had gone through to the injectors and took it to the dealer. They tested the pump by KTM's guidelines, found it to be bad (even with new filters fitted) and sent it to KTM USA for the warranty claim to be validated (thus showing one of the biggest issues KTM has - not trusting their dealers and not giving them the info and support they need).
    With the new pump I realized mine had always run below its best - it was like someone had fitted a supercharger when I got it back.
    I am not sure how the heat contributed to the problem, but I did have boiling fuel in the left tank at about the same time. As part of my fault finding I unkinked a potentially blocked breather hose and did the flappendectomy and canisterectomy - it is possible that the pump was sometimes trying to pull a vacuum (which would cause the fuel to boil at a lower temperature if indeed the pump is capable of that (I suspect it is) although I never detected one on opening either tank (the only time IMHO that a KTM can suck :D).

    I have been a victim of poor fuel in Asia before. My advice - check the easiest things first. Wash out the tanks, put some filters back on the pump, check for kinked hoses, get a dealer to check the fuel pressure and the pump ( there is a thread here somewhere on how to check fuel pressure yourself ) insulate the tanks with reflective material on the inner surfaces, and if this all sounds like too much work, buy a Honda. I personally think the big Katoom is worth every penny and every minute you put into sorting and maintaining it. Many dont, and thats one reason I dont see one at every Starbucks (thank gawd!)
    #18
  19. Werdus Smith

    Werdus Smith Operator

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    I have changed the fuelfilters on mine today. I did discover some ventlines that I could see were pinched. I rerouted them somewhat so they run down the inside of the frame. Went for a testride. All seems well again, but I will only know for sure when I take it into the deep sand again to see if its totally sorted out. I do believe that it is, but I`ll keep you guys posted.
    #19
  20. Werdus Smith

    Werdus Smith Operator

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    Ok, it`s official, my bike is fixed !
    I took it into some deep sand on a hot day and the bike is running like a dream, so changing the fuelfilters and unpinching the ventlines worked for me.
    #20