09 F800GS won't start

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by sarkmych, Aug 17, 2010.

  1. sarkmych

    sarkmych Adventurer

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    So here I was at the GS Challenge in Rocky Mountain House. Had a great weekend, met some cool people, exchanged some phone numbers etc, etc. Rode Sunday morning to and from the GS Challenge site (The Gravel Pits), and parked my bike conveniently behind my truck ready to load it.
    Was all ready to show off how I load my bike myself when my bike refused to start. Cranks like all hell no problem there but either no spark or no fuel. I brought it home to the garage and removed the plugs. They were fine but dry as a bone so obviously no fuel getting into the cylinder as there was no fuel odor coming from the cylinder head plug port. I don't suspect injectors as there is no way both injectors could "fail" at the same time so I suspect the fuel pump. I'm a first time owner of a BMW so I'm not all that familiar with the mechanics but I am pretty good mechanically. Any suggestions as to how to check the fuel pump? Is there a fuel pump fuse somewhere? Any other suggestions??
    I have an appointment next week at the dealer but would love to be able to solve this problem on my own and of course with the help of all of you out there in ADV land.
    #1
  2. oclv454

    oclv454 Been here awhile

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    Many of us have had what sounds like the same problem. I had the problem back in May and had to be towed twice to the dealership. I know it sounds crazy but it appears the problem was the injectors. The first time I got towed in, they looked at something else. The next day it wouldn't start and then they replaced the injectors. Haven't had a problem since. Since then, I have added 4 ounces of BMW Techron fuel additive with every third or fourth tankful of gas. Seems these bikes are sensitive to fuel with ethanol added. The tech had to measure the amount of ethanol in my gas in the tank to make sure it was 10% or less to get the injectors covered under the warranty. There are several long threads on here about the issue. I am also now charcoal cannister free so that may have helped the situation also. oclv
    #2
  3. Indy Unlimited

    Indy Unlimited Long timer

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    I was like you until both injectors had to be replaced and I was confused how that could happen. More research from inmates and other forums. Now I run Seafoam once every few tanks and the injectors stay clean. My understanding is the fuel pump corrodes with the presence of ethanol in the gas so whenever getting gas with ethanol I would add on ounce of Seafoam to coat the pump walls and protect from corrosion. I got over 12,000 miles since my injectors were replaced. No issues using Seafoam!
    #3
  4. sarkmych

    sarkmych Adventurer

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    It just doesn't make sense that BOTH injectors would fail at the same time. Wouldn't that problem be noticeable over a period of time until it finally fails? I need more info..... looking at the threads.
    #4
  5. Indy Unlimited

    Indy Unlimited Long timer

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    They don't fail they clog with corrosion particles from the fuel pump. They can be cleaned and reinstalled. I use my old pair as spares.
    #5
  6. sarkmych

    sarkmych Adventurer

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    Well last night, I checked the fuel pump and the injectors. The injectors are squirting into the throttle bodies normally. Working my way back I guess. If there's spark then I'm going to drain the fuel and refuel with more premium and see what happens. Keep you posted.
    #6
  7. sarkmych

    sarkmych Adventurer

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    Well, I'm very pleased to say that I found the root of the problem and all is well now. Bike is up and runnnnnnning again like a charm. Spark plugs got a good buffing to a shiny finish and the bike fired right up. Now we'll just see how long that lasts.
    #7
  8. EnderTheX

    EnderTheX Dirt Rider

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    After several threads about fuel pump and injector issues I'm going to be running Techron (or seafoam whatever) every 3k miles in all of my vehicles because the influx of ethanol in our gas poses the same problem for my bikes and car. Aluminum and ethanol don't mix, it causes pitting and the particles will clog the system. The only way to safely run ethanol is a full stainless steel system which we don't have... :puke1
    #8
  9. Indy Unlimited

    Indy Unlimited Long timer

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    I wonder if the aluminum flakes from the fuel pump went thru the injectors and built up on the spark plug tip?:eek1
    #9
  10. sarkmych

    sarkmych Adventurer

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    Here's a pic or 2 of the plugs after removal. As you can see they don't look fouled or anything. Just a little oxidization from what I can tell. Like I said, I checked that the injectors were working properly and the fuel pump as well. All I did different was clean the plugs.
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    #10
  11. blender

    blender Just another rider

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    I admit I'm no mechanic, however my uneducated guess is that if there were flakes or other particles from the fuel pump they would get caught in the injectors. Those are some pretty fine holes in those things...

    Good news that a simple plug buffing solved the problem, however I wonder if the real problem was something was loose and the simple effort of removing and replacing the injectors and plugs did the real job?

    All speculation on my part....
    #11
  12. digdesign

    digdesign Hack

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    Seems odd that the bike would go from running fine to a non starter from dirty plugs. Wouldn't symptoms of build up on the plugs would come on more progressively?

    Are you sure that is the root of the problem? Is there a chance that in the act of taking things apart and putting them back together you fixed a loose connection or something?

    *edit* - cross post, you beat me to it blender
    #12
  13. sarkmych

    sarkmych Adventurer

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    My sentiments exactly as earlier stated. I don't believe that a sudden non-start situation would arise from either dirty spark plugs, plugged injectors, etc.
    I guess its possible that some moisture made its way into one of the connections / plugs. As part of my investigation and subsequent solution, I made sure to clean all the plugs and spray or wipe a bit of contact cleaner onto all connectors when I re-assembled. Either way, i'm curious how much I saved not having to let the BMW mechanic figure this one out. I figure about $300-$400 ???
    Now on to that leaky valve cover on the left side. Next week's project I guess.....
    #13
  14. oclv454

    oclv454 Been here awhile

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    I'm no mechanic, but those plugs don't look fouled enough to keep a bike from running. Fouled plugs normally look pretty nasty. oclv
    #14
  15. Mr B

    Mr B Been here awhile

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    Hope you got it solved. I had a similar issue several weeks ago. Mine was running fine and just stalled. it would re-start after a few but stall again. I checked the gas cap and when I opened, heard a "sucking" sound. I had somehow blocked/clogged the return and created a vacuum in the fuel system. They (dealers) say that the charcoal canister can cause this if it gets wet fuel in from over filling. I don't know if you have on of those in Canada...(right). but check you vent hose to the top of the tank. If it is pinched perhaps you are having same issue.
    Mine only happened once, at one time it would not start for several attempts, then vrooommmm...
    maybe this helps..good luck....
    #15
  16. TierHawg

    TierHawg Herder of the J-Cats

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    I have a six month old '09 F800GS. It's been on a few day rides, but mainly a commuter to and from work. Have this week off work and wanted to go on an epic day trip. My plan was to head to Yosemite, ride over the Tioga Pass, and depending on how I felt, return the same way or come back over the Sonora Pass.

    I left home with 3.5 gallons and planed to refuel in Yosemite to get over the pass. About 90 minutes into the ride, I was in Yosemite and needed to stretch my legs. You can guess what happened when I tried to start the bike after a 5 minute break. The bike had electric power, the starter just kept spinning over.

    Not knowing about the issue prior to this, I tried all the easy fixes, re-keyed the ignition, rotated the kill switch back and forth, kept the bike in neutral, clutch in, side-stand up. I thought about giving up and calling BMW Roadside. Only problem I was in the middle of nowhere, with no cell service. In a final act of desperation, I tried another restart with 1/2 throttle. It sounded closer, but still nothing. Full throttle one last try and it finally started up. During this I'm sure I saw the digital re-out acting up. It displayed the time and odometer. Gear position, fuel and engine temp were blank. The fuel and engine temp had the icons at the bottom, just no readings.

    I had a weird feeling not to turn off the bike again. I was in a bad spot, cause I didn't want to head over the pass without refueling, also I could not get all the way home without refueling. I decided to limp the bike home and ended up refueling about 30 miles out. I turned off the bike at the gas station, and did a quick restart to make sure I was good to go. Bike restarted just like normal.

    I took a 10 minute break. I got on the bike to leave, and yep, no start again. The digital readout once again displayed time, odo and blank below that. Bike turned over with no sign of fuel being delivered. I gave it full throttle again, and this time it didn't like it. Start, stumble, die, repeat. About the forth try it caught and ran like normal again.

    On the way home I got the bright ideal to record the non-start on my digital camera. Once I was home, the bike restarted like normal, even after waiting 5-10 minutes. :huh

    The temp was 75 the first time, and 85 the second. I was using good fuel and in fact ran the exact same fuel in my WR250R without any issue. I fill up a 5 gallon container bi-weekly and bring it home to top off both bikes. Tomorrow I plan to stop by the local BMW shop to see what they think.
    #16
  17. alan

    alan if the helmet fits..

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    All this fussing with injectors, plugs. electronics just reminds me how difficult modern bikes are to fix or even diagnose roadside. Doesn't bare well when planning around the world trip
    #17
  18. lm002e

    lm002e Been here awhile

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    I had the same issue as the OP. Had it towed to the dealer where they cleaned the injectors with their fancy BMW injector cleaning machine. Ran great for a week then quit again. It would crank and crank but wouldn't fire up. Towed back to dealer. Dealer checks it out and says, "everything's fine". It runs great for another couple weeks and then quits a few days before I'm set to leave on a month long trip up the CDR. Back to the dealer for a 3rd time where they finally find out that the fuel pump and fuel pump controller aren't "communicating". Their words, not mine. They replace the pump and the controller (all under warranty thank god) and the bike has run like a champ for the last 10K miles. Like many other inmates I'm also using seafoam every couple of tanks of gas.
    #18
  19. JRWooden

    JRWooden never attribute to malice...

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    Did the magic BMW "interrogation" computer tell them this??? :huh
    #19
  20. lm002e

    lm002e Been here awhile

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    [QUOTE Quote:
    <table width="100%" border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0"> <tbody><tr> <td class="dg-bbcode dg-bbcode-quote"> Originally Posted by lm002e [​IMG]
    ... Back to the dealer for a 3rd time where they finally find out that the fuel pump and fuel pump controller aren't "communicating". Their words, not mine. ...
    </td> </tr> </tbody></table>
    Did the magic BMW "interrogation" computer tell them this??? :huh][/QUOTE]

    I could have been a magic 8-ball for all I know. I have no idea why it took so long to find the problem. :hmmmmm
    #20