KTM 990 ADV Stalling...Bad news, more bad news, good news, and TBD

Discussion in 'Crazy-Awesome almost Dakar racers (950/990cc)' started by jeremyk, Dec 9, 2009.

  1. jeremyk

    jeremyk Adventurer

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    I've had the "typical" stalling, hesitation, poor mileage, and surging that many have reported with the KTM 990 Adventure (mine is a 2007).

    I purchased mine (new) in Sept. 2009 and started experiencing these drivability issues almost immediately. Unfortunately, this was an eBay purchase from an out of state dealer so I could not take the bike in right away.

    Well, I finally took the bike to my nearest (Michigan) LC8 certified dealer (150 miles away in Kalamazoo) last week and here's the update:

    Bad News: A VIN search showed that the warranty is expired, even though the dealer (European Motorcycles of Pittsburgh) clearly stated in the auction that it came with a full 2 year KTM factory warranty. I called EMofP and was informed that they are no longer a KTM dealer, but that they would help try to resolve the issue with KTM. So, TBD on that part.

    More Bad News: I had already done the first oil change, but decided that I should probably have the factory service performed for the valve adjustment as a precaution. I told them to replace the fuel filter while they were at it, as I had suspicions that this was a fuel related problem. When they took off the air box the mechanic was horrified to find that the throttle bodies and every other fuel system component were covered in a rust colored layer of stinky, watery fuel.

    The Good News: This is likely a major part of the drivability problem that I've been experiencing. Sticking secondary butterflies, water in the gas, etc could explain most of the problems I've had so far. Plus the guys at Life Cycle seem to know what they're doing and are willing to do what it takes to get this thing fixed.

    TBD: Will any of this be covered under warranty...and do I have one? I'm sure in a court of law, I have a warranty, but I hope that with a few simple keystokes that KTM can fix it in their system. The fuel issue will be hard to prove as a "manufacturer defect"..but it's certainly not my fault. I've only used gas from known gas stations in my area...and the bike has had this issue since the first tank of gas (It only had 36 miles on it when I bought it). I should have taken the bike in sooner, but lucky I called Life Cycle as soon as it started happening, because I wanted to at least verbally document the condition until I could get the bike in for service.
    #1
  2. Beartooth

    Beartooth Been here awhile

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    The hesitation sounds more like something to do with the emissions canisiters. If they get fuel in them it can make your motor flood and cause fuel smells etc. I would take the canisters off and not worry about the fuel filter becuase the fuel filter is inside the tanks. Try removing the canisters....search canisterectomy. This will probably solve many if not all of your issues.
    #2
  3. jeremyk

    jeremyk Adventurer

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    "The hesitation sounds more like something to do with the emissions canisiters. If they get fuel in them it can make your motor flood and cause fuel smells etc. I would take the canisters off and not worry about the fuel filter becuase the fuel filter is inside the tanks. Try removing the canisters....search canisterectomy. This will probably solve many if not all of your issues."

    I disagree...hesitation could absolutely be the secondary butterflies hanging up on the corrosion and sludge that has deposited in the throttle bodies. You're also implying that red rust and the watery, foul smelling film that covers the internals of my throttle bodies is normal and nothing to be concerned about. :huh If there is this much crud in my TBs, you can bet that the fuel filter is trashed and needs to be replaced. I'm planning on having them replace filter AND pump, even if I have to pay for it out of my own pocket. Water and rust (iron oxide) in the fuel has probably already started to cause wear and corrosion in my fuel pump. It will be the next thing to fail.
    #3
  4. Beartooth

    Beartooth Been here awhile

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    Let me backup. I'd find out for sure whether or not your bike is under warranty. If it isn't, I'd first try a few things myself before giving a dealer an $80 shop rate. I still think the canisters are part of your problem. Make sure you check out the 'how' for gobs and gobs of wisdom. http://www.ktm950.info/

    I'm only familiar with the symptoms and issues with my 950. Taking the dang canisters off was a miracle cure for starting issues/flooding.
    #4
  5. Beartooth

    Beartooth Been here awhile

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    http://www.ktm950.info/how/ktm_950_issues.html

    990 Fuel Injection Problems (stalling, abrupt on-off throttle):

    2007-2009
    Problems range from abrupt transition from off to on throttle, to stalling when throttle shut off over 5k rpm, to steady throttle engine shut down. Fixes range from installing G2 throttle cams, to tightening loose battery cables, replacing battery, charging system malfunction, fuel pump/filter problems, aftermarket workarounds, and MAP updates. KTM hasn't admitted a problem exists, but the 2009 LC8's all got new ECU's.
    #5
  6. Night Falcon

    Night Falcon Tiger Tamer

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    I hope you get KTM to support you on this....but my experience is given an "out" they usually take it. Our local dealer is fantastic and their machanics are first class but warranty issues must be ok'd by KTM head office....the same guys that handed Charlie an Ewan to BMW, dumped a less than perfected EFI system on to loyal unsuspecting customers and then prentend there wasn't a problem....and whom promote their customer service as a virtue!


    Good Luck!!

    PS...Cheap fix....its amazing what a can of CRC will do to get things working!
    #6
  7. testa

    testa Been here awhile

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    I wouls consult with an attorney in your state of residence about a possible claim against the selling dealer for misrepresentation regarding whether the bike was covered by a new bike warranty. You will need to look closely at the ebay posting and your sales contract but a decent lawyer will be able to give you sound advice.
    #7
  8. Sheep Shagger

    Sheep Shagger Show me your fleece

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    If it was a new bike, then your warranty starts the day you bought the bike, makes no difference if it's a 06 or 09, KTM can not deny this. But, if the dealer had this as say a demo, then sold it to you, or it's on KTM's books as a sold bike for some other reason (before you bought it), you are shit out-a luck. Either way the Dealer you bought it from is responsible if they claimed it had a warranty.

    There is no working with you, I'd tell them you are going to send them the bill from the dealer who's fixing the problems. So they better either sort it out with KTM so the current dealer who has the bike can warranty it, or they should expect a bill.
    #8
  9. Rockcat

    Rockcat LDA

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    +1 In my experience dealing KTM has been a pain.
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  10. Geek

    Geek oot & aboot

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    How is water in the gas causing a mess in the butterflys, etc in any way a warranty issue?

    What is the manufacturing defect?
    #10
  11. jeremyk

    jeremyk Adventurer

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    Sorry Beartooth if I sounded ungrateful for the info. you provided. It's just that I've read every thread on this subject and am already pretty well educated on the workings of fuel injection systems, though not specifically the KTM.

    Good News: My sales guy at European Motorcycles got on the ball and contacted somebody at KTM. My shop in Kalamazoo also called but the fix was already underway and I now have a warranty good through Sept. 2011. Things are usually not this easy, but I'll take it.

    More good news: My fuel pump and filter are going to be replaced under warranty, which will help cover some of the tear down costs associated with the valve adjustment (3 were out of spec. BTW so I'm glad I did that) and the throttle body cleaning.

    I'm feeling pretty good right now about the possibility of this bike running like a the average herky-jerky KTM 990, which will likely be a vast improvement over what I started with. We'll see.

    "How is water in the gas causing a mess in the butterflys, etc in any way a warranty issue?

    What is the manufacturing defect?"


    Though the fuel doesn't follow the flow of air into the throttle bodies, it does enter just after the air openings and it is my understanding that this were all the "crap" is. I wish I had some pictures, but from the sound of the service guy, it was really really bad....like, "hey everybody, you have to come over here and see this" kinda bad.

    Your point about water/bad gas NOT being a warranty issue is/was my same concern. It's not a defect created by the manufacturer, like an out of tolerance part or an improperly assembled module. I fully expect that I will have to pay for the cleaning and labor associated with the throttle bodies.

    More than likely, some grease monkey at the original dealership dumped some "shop gas" out of a rusty metal storage container into the bike to top it off. There are no "steel" components in the KTM fuel delivery system (except the pump internals which are probably stainless) that would allow the gas to turn rusty, even if the gas sat in there for two years. Plastic and aluminum do not create "red rust" type corrosion, which is apparently what is covering the inside of my throttle bodies. You need water and steel for that.
    #11
  12. jeremyk

    jeremyk Adventurer

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    Update:

    The fuel pump and filter were replaced under warranty and the bike ran very well for a couple of weeks. Then, one morning during my commute, I felt it stumble, then stall as I was I was dropping through the gears. I got to work, but stalled while idling when I went to leave work later that night. The bike would crank, but did not seem to fire.

    I found that the bike would start if I pressed on the large connector that can be seen by looking through the RH fairing. This got the bike running well enough to put a few hundred more miles on it, but it continued to stumble fairly often for no apparent reason. Most noticeable at low RPM cruising.

    At my next oil change I checked all the wires going in/out of that connector and didn't find any that looked like they weren't seated property or were damaged, but I did apply di-electric grease and made sure that the connector was seated all the way upon reassembly. I also found a wire going into the side of the airbox, which showed some distress and bent it the opposite direction and rerouted it. The bike runs great now, but I'm not sure which of these things fixed the problem.

    I know think that a majority of the issues I had experienced initially, were due to a wiring issues. Something to keep in mind if you experience similar symptoms.
    #12
  13. 9nine0

    9nine0 Formally NineFive0 V2

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    If this is the large grey connector hanging from the frame (RH) tube it is the main wiring connector for your TB's and was probably disconnected by the dealer during the cleaning.

    Hope you have many trouble free miles or KM's...:freaky
    #13
  14. jeremyk

    jeremyk Adventurer

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    I was thinking the same thing, but the driveability issues that I experienced after the service were almost identical to those before...just a little worse. It's possible that this connector has been loose all along. The bike rides like a dream now, compared to before. I've logged over 1000 trouble free miles since checking the wiring. Finally, this bike is living up to it's potential.:D
    #14