EWS Immobilizer antenna threadfest

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by CarbonCat, Apr 8, 2006.

  1. daveburton

    daveburton Been here awhile

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    Thanks a lot for the response,

    I've tried the antenna as many people said that it could be the issue, no luck.
    I've tried the spare key.
    I've not done much with the battery as it seemed very good but will now eck that.
    I'm thinking it might be a trapped wire now based on your list. I did remove one tie wrap that was very tight.

    Thanks for the help.

    cheers dave
  2. jpalamar

    jpalamar Long timer

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    Dave, from my experience and many others the EWS/'ring' failure is not intermittent? Tho' I have not read this complete thread, but am talking from my experiences primarily.

    People's good or bad fortune with batteries seem to vary, but here are some tips. Electronic devices plugged into AUX (non-CAN-bus sockets) do draw current, called parasitic draw. Best unplug these devices. Some devices even with 'switch off' draw current. Some CAN-bus sockets are faulty and do not properly 'shut-off', also drawing current with the device plugged in.

    Some people have 'Deltran Battery Tenders'. Many leave them plugged in all of the time and have good results, others have claimed they have ruined their good battery. I hedge my bet by putting bikes on BT's with a Christmas light timer so that the timer turns it on for 1-hour per day for battery maintenance.

    Batteries for some BMW's owners seem to be their Achille's Heel. If I were traveling on remote roads I'd give some consideration to keeping something that could start/augment/jump battery in an emergency. There are lots of alternatives, they do take space in the pannier but peace of mind can be worth it.

    Good luck, surely I didn't tell you anything you didn't know.
  3. daveburton

    daveburton Been here awhile

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    Thanks,

    Nothing I didn't know but still very much appreciated as it gives me assurance for the decisions I'm making.

    Jumped the bike from a truck this morning, it started but was completely erratic in terms of fueling and the electronic display. It then repeated the fault numerous times when connected to the truck so battery issue eliminated (at least using my logic.)

    Re-connect 2 different antennas and same problem. Conclusion, ECU or some type of electronics control. Could be a short as well I think from the antenna to the ECU.

    Due to timing and already down 4 days capitulated and arranging to load onto a truck bound for Buenos Aires. Great bike shop here, very helpful but unable to sort problem due to diagnoistic gear needed.

    I'll get a set of WESA wilbur GS shocks -25mm organised as well since mine are now leaking badly after the rough roads.

    Not happy but reconciled to our fate this time.

    Any views on suspension upgrades, I'll let you know what the fault is once we have it fixed. Mech here thinks it'll probably be a trapped wire as likely as anything else and that will just take time to track down however he was concerned about us heading along our route as is. We'll be pretty remote in Southern Chile so proobably best to quit ahead.

    cheers dave
  4. bajaburro

    bajaburro Ancient Adventurer

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    bro you be fucked,in your vernacular.
  5. daveburton

    daveburton Been here awhile

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    Can't argue with that.
  6. eric2

    eric2 ®egister this:

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    I had an EWS error that was caused by the gas tank rubbing through a wire on the right front side. '05 GS, I got it to start once after I got the error and got home, but that was it. I think '06 was the only year that had defective antennas.
  7. daveburton

    daveburton Been here awhile

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    Guys, thanks for the help. Got the bike shipped 2,000 miles to the dealer in Buenos Aires. Turns out it was the BMS-KP.

    Currently trying to get one in the US.

    Due to the import regs in Argentina it could take 5 months to get one imported. Be warned about riding in Argentina, fantastic rides but no spares and service difficult if you get these kinds of problems. The shop in BUE has been helpful so far but still looks like it'll take about 3 months or maybe 4 to get it sorted out.

    I have arranged for Wilbers shocks to replace my damaged units but can't get them sent till the computer is fixed. Overall an very expensive clusterf**k.

    Probably should have tried to ship the bike to the US from Ushuaia, repaired it and sold it. Maybe could have happened to any bike but I have 2 x Super Tenere's and both have been dead reliable however one is still lower mileage.

    My BM has done 17K miles.

    If anyone has any ideas about getting the spares into Argentina I'd appreciate any advice I can get.

    cheers dave
  8. jamespbaum

    jamespbaum n00b

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    Hi -- I'm new here and I read every post in this 10 year long thread last night looking for insight (and found a lot of it - thank you). I have a BRAND NEW 2014 R1200GS with 300 miles on it. I was setting up my toolkit for the bike over the weekend and one of the things I like to carry is a small air compressor to fix flats. I don't have anything specifically for motorcycles, just one of those cheapo Chinese units that cost like $10.

    I decided to test the air compressor before filing it away in my pannier. I didn't really know much or understand the canbus system when I plugged the compressor in to the canbus controlled power outlet on the machine. The compressor ran for about 1/2 second and then cut out. I figured I had blown a fuse (I know now - none to be found) but quickly discovered that the bike would not start and the immobilization lock was to blame.

    I let the bike sit for about and hour and then it started. I figured that the computer reset itself and all was now fine. That proved to NOT be the case. The immobilizer now locks out intermittently. I find that most of the time it is locked out but every now and then, I put the key in and it starts. Then a few hours later, it doesn't.

    My spare keys are about 250 miles away from where I am so I have not tested with another key. I am going to get the bike back to the dealer this week but my dealer is also about 250 miles away.

    Anybody got any ideas on what's happening? Could the compressor have somehow done some damage to the BMS-K, ring antenna, or key?
  9. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    The compressor issue and the key issue are not related. Most likely you have a bad antenna or key. This is a first for the Wethead so far.
  10. Wallowa

    Wallowa Long timer

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    First the compressor most probably required more amps than the plug in on your bike could deliver and system shut itself down...I think 5 amps is max for this "accessory" plug...

    Next remember the EWS, at least on my bike, also denotes a weak battery charge or failure...my OEM battery was never correctly charged by the dealer; perhaps the 300 miles was insufficient to charge your battery. In fact the OEM battery needed to be replaced in one year.

    Lastly, if the antennae ring truly locks you out, "immobilizes"; I do not believe it will 'correct itself' [not intermittent]; you will need to take it to a BMW dealer to 'turn off' the immobilizer by setting one of the backup key codes [10 per bike?] and re-keying your bike

    But I could be wrong. :D
  11. gary5410

    gary5410 Been here awhile

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    I had "EWS" in Utah on my 2007 Adventure in 2008 and it was intermittent. The next day it started and then came back with "EWS" again when I shut off again. I believe I got it started two more times after waiting hours. :ear
    SLC BMW robbed the ring off a new bike to get me going and never had a problem after. :clap

    Gary

    PS My avatar is the day after I got it fixed at....... the Bonneville Salt Flats! :-)
    Kt-88 likes this.
  12. undergroundsg

    undergroundsg n00b

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    My friend bought a 2013 R1200GS WC. It happend a few months ago so we took the key out, wait 5 minutes and re-applied the key...the error code disappeared. Bike was good for a few months.

    Last month at the border or Cambodia and Thailand, After parking the bike under the super hot sun during our lunch, Key error appeared again. do the same 5 mins trick...it didn't work.

    Unconnect the battery twice...still couldn't start the bike.

    Used the spare key...still same problem.

    So I got pissed off and turn the ingnition on and off about a dozen time continuesly very fast...no luck.

    I got even more pissed off because it is 38 Celsius under the Cambodia Sun so I did the same trick (turning the ignition on and off real fast continuously) while holding the start button...it f**king worked... while switching igninion on-off and holding start button, the bike just fired up and we just went on.

    Bike made it home ok and it has been 2 months
    since the incident...no problem so far.

    It might sound stupid...but it did happened believe it or not. So I though I share it here.
  13. Wallowa

    Wallowa Long timer

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    Thanks Gary...I guess they can in fact be an intermittent problem. Odd that the "EWS" came on when you shut it off. Whole ring thing is very confusing to me and I have never heard what exactly was the reason they failed. By that I mean what was the weakness either in the ring, key or ECU.

    Phil
  14. gary5410

    gary5410 Been here awhile

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    I said that wrong.... It came on when I tried to restart!

    ....and the reason i never had the problem again may be due to the fact that I carried a spare key ring antenna!

    Gary
  15. drmajor

    drmajor Been here awhile

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    My 07 failed on a 95 degree day. Stopped to get gas, then nothing.

    I seem to remember there was a work around for emergencies.. kinda like a hot wire.??? Wish I knew where that link was.
  16. GB

    GB . Administrator

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    the only work around is to carry a spare EWS antenna and to disconnect the one mounted on the bike, plug the spare into the wiring harness there and place it near the starter key, then it should start. BMW did not see the need to provide a back up PIN code option to start the bike, like some other bike manufacturers.
  17. Wallowa

    Wallowa Long timer

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  18. GB

    GB . Administrator

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    On a Ducati, if the bike fails to start due to an issue with the electronic key, you can bypass it by entering a 4 digit PIN thru the menu toggle switch on the left switch gear. You can also use this method if you lost or forgot your key. On Harley, I've been told it's by entering a combination using the left and right turn signal buttons, but I have no personal knowledge of the HD system. The Ducati numeric PIN is easy to enter. It's the first thing you have to do when you take ownership of the bike, create your own PIN.
  19. Wallowa

    Wallowa Long timer

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    Unless a Yoda can produce such a work around for us...we BMW owners either patch in a new antenna until we can get to BMW dealer or call a tow truck to take us there...CUZ it is a stop-right-there issue..
  20. mjfields_228

    mjfields_228 Been here awhile

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    I just got back last weekend from a 6000 mile Coast-to-Coast trip on my 2012 GSA and I am very thankful that this issue did not crop up while I was in BFE.

    Today after work today I washed the filthy beast and then was heading out for a ride. Leaving my neighborhood she dies. I thought it might be my side stand switch but I looked at the display and saw "EWS!!" and the accompanying exclamation triangle flag.

    Pushed it home, connected my GS911 and it is throwing up a 10444 fault.

    I tried my other key as well and no joy.

    I am betting its a bad antenna ring unless someone here knows of another failure mode that would manifest/present itself in this manner.

    I am planning on replacing the failed fucker in the morning but not being mechanically inclined as I wish to be I am wondering if any of you super smart mechanically inclined folks here have come up with a better method to remove the security screws other than drilling them out. Please help! Access is horrible and I have big fat sausage hands/fingers!!!

    Many many MANY thanks for any advice.

    Looks like shit under there I know! But I am not sure everyone's model year uses the same style security screws so I am including this picture of mine!

    <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/mjfields228/15177884169" title="IMG_4897 by Matthew Fields, on Flickr"><img src="https://farm3.staticflickr.com/2948/15177884169_66f4b61673_b.jpg" width="1024" height="768" alt="IMG_4897"></a>