My F800gs STALLS LIKE ITS RUNNING OUT OF GAS! PLEASE HELP!!

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by chunter, Jan 3, 2009.

  1. chunter

    chunter Adventurer

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    Hi Everyone,

    I have a new F800gs that now has 350 miles on it. I have been having an issue with it stalling for the last few days. The first time it happened, my display showed about 65 miles range remaining, and it happened at low RPM. I started it back up and made my way to a gas station. On the way there, it cut out about 10 more times at various speeds and RPMs[​IMG]. When I got to the gas station, I put 2.5 gallons into it (full), and after a few minutes, it ran fine. No further issues.

    Puzzled by this, I drained the tank down (with a pump) nearly to the point of the light coming on. It ran with no issues for about 20 miles.

    I wondered if there may have been a clog in the air-inlet to the gas tank or something. I filled the tank back up, and did some more riding. I emailed the dealership to ask if there were any software updates or open items for my bike, and they said there were not. He said that I should try opening the gas tank if it happens again because there may be negative pressure there.

    Today, when the tank got back down to about 65 miles range (again), the bike sputtered out (again). It had run perfectly for the entire tank of gas until that point. I opened the gas cap, closed it, and started it up again. The bike did run for about 3 miles but then had the same issue. From that point on, it didn't matter how much I opened the gas tank, it made no difference. I filled the tank back up to the top (3.2 gallons), and have run another 50 miles since then with no issues.

    Does anyone have any idea what could be going on? I am skeptical about the vent tube to the gas tank being the issue because wouldn't opening the gas tank solve that? If that were the issue, would it run perfectly until the tank got down to 65 miles range? Please give me your thoughts.

    Aloha,
    Charlie
    #1
  2. Bigem

    Bigem Long timer

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    If its at the point where it plays up at the moment, take it for a ride with the tank "open" but taped over. So it should not play up if the breather is actually blocked, but, I thought they where a pressurised system?

    It could be that the valve in the cap has failed and does not allow the tank to adequately pressurise when the fuel quantity gets low. I could be completely off track but it might be worth a go? Sounds very odd. Best of luck and keep us posted when you find out what is causing it.
    #2
  3. wirewrkr

    wirewrkr the thread-killer

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    one of the reasons to buy a new bike is because of the warranty.
    Take it back. Document everything.... twice
    Robert
    #3
  4. One Eye Mike

    One Eye Mike Been here awhile

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    Mine has done this as well as eveyone I know who bought one before it snowed. To date, I have not heard the reason why.
    #4
  5. cisco

    cisco old fat guy

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    Mine did this on the way to my 600 mi. service. I road it from Flagstaff to Tucson with one stop for gas. As I got close to Tucson the traffic slowed for the construction. The engine died as if I shut it off,Would not re-lite with the tire turning at 60mph in the fast lane. I pulled over and it restarted in neutral. This happened one more time on the freeway, and again at the exit. Then at every stop lite on the way to the shop. It finely would not restart. I got a free ride on a tow truck to the dealer that was waiting for me to show up after hours.They found me a room for the night( thanks John). The next a.m. I went to the shop,my bike was on the work stand. After completing the service the tech started in on the stalling. NO codes. They let the the bike sit running until the fan came on, it ran and ran. The tech went on a short ride, still running fine. They let it run an other 30 min. , Finally it stalls! The whole shop started to cheer. Ok lets bypass the charcoal canister. Restart.... runs fine, " this must be the problem", no sooner did he say that the thing dies. OK maybe that wasn't it. Let's check the relays. This one doesn't sound right. Change the relay, runs and runs.Cool I can make it back to Flagstaff before the snow sticks. It dies again. Only thing left is the fuel pump, not in stock. The dealer sets me up with a scooter to get home( thanks again John) and I got there just as the snow starts to stick.That was three weeks ago, and still no fuel pump. The service manager informed me on Friday that BMW has the pump on back order! with 40 inches of snow on the ground and more on the way it's not urgent, but what if I was traveling. The only thing the dealer can do is diagnose the problem and order parts. It seems that BMW keeps hamstringing their dealers, first the delay from March to Sept. now not backing them with parts. I got rid of a 950 Adv. because of this kind of BS. I hope this is the end and not the beginning.
    Cisco
    #5
  6. chunter

    chunter Adventurer

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    Thanks Cisco,

    Would yours run normally on a full tank of gas? If it were the fuel pump, would the fuel level matter?

    I hope to hell that my local dealer can fix the problem. They don't get many of these bikes out here. I want to go armed with a list of possible causes to the issue.

    Aloha,
    Charlie
    #6
  7. chunter

    chunter Adventurer

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    Thanks Robert. I'll follow that advice.

    Aloha,
    Charlie
    #7
  8. cisco

    cisco old fat guy

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    The bike ran flawlessly up until the first stall. The tank was low.
    Cisco
    #8
  9. Bayner

    Bayner Long timer

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    Obviously this is just a guess, but I had a similar fault on a car in my shop once ... In that case the intake for the fuel pump had become detached from the pump. I don't know how your pump is positioned, but most FI pumps have a screen/filter on the intake side that sits at the lowest point in the tank. If the pump and strainer became separated, you could have fuel in the tank but it would not be drawn up because the pump is sucking air as it sits slightly higher in the tank. Obviously if this is the case, the symptoms will repeat at the same fuel level every time.

    If it were a venting issue you could run with a low fuel level and the cap off and be fine...

    From a diagnostic point of view, I'd be looking into whether it looses spark, fuel pressure or injector pulse when it dies, or perhaps some combination, but you'd be best to let the dealer sort it out I think. If their answers seem vague then try to takle it yourself.
    #9
  10. cisco

    cisco old fat guy

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    The first thing the dealer did was to bypass the canister on my bike and it made no difference. I asked the tech if there was a fuel filter and he said that he did not know. The common thing here is the low fuel levels. I have taken mine to the warning lite. The level was above it when it stalled.
    Cisco
    #10
  11. chunter

    chunter Adventurer

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    Yeah, mine was well above the warning light when it happened.

    Another 20 miles with no issues...keep your fingers crossed.
    #11
  12. tmex

    tmex Long timer

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    Interesting. I wonder if altitude or barometric pressure changes are somehow fooling the FI system and leaning the bike out to the point of stalling. It would be prudent to get the latest firmware version installed. I have heard lots of reports about bikes stalling in rain which usually occurs in conjunction with low barometric pressure.

    That explanation fails to explain the correlation of the problem with fuel level, but perhaps there is some tie in that is not obvious. It would seem unlikely that it is a cannister problem, but certainly possible. Cisco, are you sure the tech by-passed the cannister properly? Did you see him do it?
    #12
  13. bxr140

    bxr140 Flame Bait

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    Stupid question, but did you verify that it wasn't a faulty fuel light? Like...how many miles were on the tanks when the bike started acting wonky?

    FWIW, I'm of the opinion that you didn't actually "correct the problem"...
    #13
  14. cisco

    cisco old fat guy

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    The tech pinched off a hose under the seat (vac?). The bike had the latest specs. It would die as if I cut off the switch, no stumble just off.
    Cisco
    #14
  15. One Eye Mike

    One Eye Mike Been here awhile

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    Mine would cut out regardless of fuel level. I would be riding along under acceleration and the bike bike would just die. Pull in the clutch, hit the starter, and she fires right back up. Would be deadly going into a corner on a wet road, however.................. I've got 950 miles on my 800, and in that time it's cut out at least 5-6 times, all at different speeds / altitudes.
    My riding partner has had the same problem. Dealer has no answers. :eek1
    #15
  16. Frostbit

    Frostbit Is it cold in here?

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    Same story here. Twice in 1000 miles the engine simply quit and both times at over 3000rpm. The first time I was leaning fairly deep in a corner....:eek1 I'm hoping that will have fixed itself by spring thaw.:loco The dealer left me with the impression that they think that it's operator error.:patch

    Morning Mike:wave
    #16
  17. PhilSpace

    PhilSpace The Gov Administrator

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    Call you dealer. Many posts over at the F800 site and here on service bulletins in the US and UK for this. One that comes up more often than not is Service Bulletin # 0001307035 System update CD version 9.2 Section 1.2.

    I know that both mine and my friends required a lengthy software update prior to delivery. My dealer did do mine and over 2000 miles later from 90 to 25 degrees, no problems.

    If a dealer neglected to do that, you might have a problem. :dunno
    #17
  18. ROYAL COACHMAN

    ROYAL COACHMAN Been here awhile

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    During a recent 900 mile trip over the holidays, I encountered heavy thunderstorms and had to ride through. (no exits) My F800 died 3 times on the highway in the down pour when pulling in the clutch to down shift or up shift. The bike would re start every time with the starter button, and I could continue on my way. My bike had 1000 miles at that point and my dealer told me it had the firmware up date prior to delivery. My dealer is contacting bmwna about this problem.
    #18
  19. Roonie

    Roonie Been here awhile

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    Interesting hasn't happened yet to mine but I have only 50 miles on it due to snow outside.

    With this talk about fuel pump I am hoping it is not like my new ski boat. You run the fuel down past 1/4 tank (a 45 gallon tank) and you can kill the fuel pump. I guess the pump is also cooled by the gas and it overheats if you let the fuel level get too low...... silly problem for a new boat (new fuel pump $400).
    #19
  20. PhilSpace

    PhilSpace The Gov Administrator

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    This might be a separate issue.

    I have had the same thing happen on an RT and last fall on the ST. The cause was moisture in the sidestand switch, which either a couple operations of the switch or a little WD-40 fixes. For my wife's RT, we replaced the switch and the dealer showed me how to build a cheater cable using the old switch to fake out the relay if it ever failed on the road again - don't think that trick is as simple on the 800's - don't know where the connector for the switch is.

    As an aside, that is the reason we went with two way radios many years ago. After finding that my wife wasn't behind me anymore and then being flagged down by a trucker to tell me that she was 10 miles back on the side of the road. She was not happy when I finally got back to where she was. :hide
    #20