6 Steps to Troubleshoot a Motorcycle That Won’t Start

a motorcycle won't start

Motorcycle riding is an exhilarating experience, but there’s nothing more frustrating than a motorcycle that won’t start. You may have planned a day trip or an early morning ride, only to find that your motorcycle is not starting. When a motorcycle won’t start, it could be caused by various issues. Before you start to worry, there are several steps you can take to troubleshoot and fix the issue.

Fix the motorcycle won’t start issue

In this article, we will explore the common reasons why your motorcycle won’t start and provide tips on how to diagnose and fix the issue. From a dead battery to a clogged fuel system, we’ll cover the main culprits and provide step-by-step solutions. Thus, Whether you’re a seasoned rider or a new motorcycle enthusiast, this guide will help you get your motorcycle back on the road.

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If you’re facing a motorcycle that won’t start, don’t panic. Let’s dive into the common reasons why your motorcycle won’t start and how to fix it.

1. First Check the Ignition System:

The ignition system is responsible for starting your motorcycle. Check the spark plugs, ignition coil, and spark plug wires to make sure everything is functioning properly. If you don’t see a spark when you try to start the motorcycle, it’s likely an issue with the ignition system.

2. Check the battery:

If the engine won’t start, it could be due to a dead battery. Cold temperatures can drain the charge from a battery, making it difficult or impossible to start a motorcycle. You can try jumpstarting the battery or charging it using a battery charger to see if that resolves the issue.

Check the fuses, wiring, and switches to make sure everything is connected and functioning properly.

It’s important to note that some old motorcycle electric systems don’t need a battery to start the engine. But if your motorcycle runs with a DC-CDI system, you definitely need a battery to make the engine run.

3. Check the Fuel System:

If the battery is not the issue, the next thing to check is the fuel system. Make sure that there is enough fuel in the tank and that the fuel valve is turned on. If your motorcycle has a carburetor, make sure it is clean and free of any debris or clogs.

4. Replace the Stale Gasoline

5. Clean the Carburetor

If you use a carburetor system, it needs to be serviced to clean the internal components. Usually, old gasoline reservoirs in the carburetor will cause sludge-like lumps that will cause the holes in the carburetor to become clogged. This is the cause of carburetor failure. Clean the pilot and main jet as well as all other internal motorcycle carburetor parts to ensure that there are no clogs. Install them properly afterward to prevent oil leaks later.

carburetor service

6. Check the Engine Compression

When you kick start the engine, it should feel heavy, just like before you parked the motorcycle. If you feel nothing or it’s loose, it means the engine has no compression.

First, look at the spark plug. If it’s still there and tight, then the engine needs to be rebuilt to fix the piston ring or valves for a 4-stroke motorcycle. For a two-stroke motorcycle, it might also happen because of the crankshaft seal.

If your motorcycle doesn’t use a kick starter, test the engine compression by charging the battery, taking out the spark plug, pressing the starter button while putting your finger at the spark plug’s hole, and feeling the air pressure. No pressure means no compression, so be careful that the ignition coil isn’t touching you.

Change the Engine Oil

This step is optional, but it serves as a supplement and gets you ready to keep riding the motorcycle if it starts. But if the motorcycle has not been stored for a long time, and the engine oil has just been changed before, then there’s no need to change the oil right now. However, don’t forget to check the oil level, as engine component damage can result from running with insufficient

Consult a Mechanic:

If you’ve tried all of the above steps and your motorcycle still won’t start, it may be time to take it to a mechanic. They have the knowledge and tools to diagnose and fix more complex issues that you may not be able to address on your own.

In conclusion, a motorcycle that won’t start can be frustrating, but there are several things you can check to troubleshoot the issue. From the battery and fuel system to the ignition and electrical systems, there are several potential causes that you can address. By following these six steps, you can increase your chances of getting your motorcycle up and running again.

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