Nicolas Bouliane

V-Strom won't start? Try this. Posted on

A few days ago, when returning from the hardware store, my 2017 V-Strom 650 wouldn’t start. This is the second time this happened to me, and unsurprisingly, it was for the same reason.

The symptoms

This happened to me twice.

The first time, it happened was after taking the bike out of winter storage. I turned the key and flipped the kill switch off. I heard the fuel pump, as usual. When I pressed the ignition button, the bike just died. The dash display went off, and it wouldn’t turn on when I turned the key off and on again.

The second time, it happened after the bike stayed still for 3 weeks. When I pressed the ignition button, the starter motor didn’t turn. Every time I pressed the ignition button, I would hear a click coming from under the seat, then the fuel pump.

The solution

In both cases, the problem was a corroded battery terminal. I took off the seat, and cleaned the positive battery terminal (highlighted in red below), and the bike started again. When I got back home, I cleaned it thoroughly with sandpaper. That solved the problem.

Other things to look at

Make sure your battery has enough power left to turn the starter motor. If it goes below 11.5 volts, charge the battery before you try to start the bike again.

A problem with the clutch lever sensor or the kickstand sensor can also prevent the bike from starting. If it’s the kickstand sensor, you won’t hear the fuel pump.

If the ignition fuse is blown, the dash display will show “CHEC”, just as if the kill switch was on. The fuse box is under the seat, near the battery. There are spare fuses under the fuse box cover.