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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Lately our 2018 Chieftain Dark Horse has had a pause while the starter is cranking, not starting unless I give ever so slight throttle when if fires (if not it stalls), and some time backfiring once. Yesterday, I rode to work and got code C1038 when starting to ride home. I just did a voltage check and the voltage dropped to 6.6XX & came back up to 12.XXX while the starter was cranking. Battery tender was plugged in all day. Battery is fully charged. I thinking it time to replace the battery even though the bike has only been in service since Oct 24, 2017 (we bought the bike used & didn't renew any warranty before it expired, so no warranty). What are your thoughts? Anything else I can check?
 

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Load test the battery and if that comes up okay. I would test the VR and make sure it is functioning. And start with the grounds as suggested.

Oct of 17 doesn't mean much the in the battery world. Bike batteries are small and wear out sometimes. Plus you don't really know how old the battery is. I am sure Polaris buys a huge lot of 10K batteries at a time so my guess, a new bikes battery is already likely a year old before it is even assembled, then shipment, sales etc. I have a 17 also. My battery is still going strong, knock on wood, but I am thinking of replacing it this Spring for good measure as mine has been on the road for nearly 3.5 years so a 4.5-5 year old battery me thinks...
 

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Having the same issue and same code, bike kept on a tender shows fully charged also checked with voltmeter and shows fully charged, checked leads and frame ground all good, but push the button and bike tries to turn over then dies and battery goes immediately flat. Guess the battery is knackered, bike is less than two years old, guess I could try a warranty claim but with a 360 mile round trip to dealers it would cost me more to get there and back than buying and fitting one myself. Checked the part number on line and the local Motor Factor (Halfords) sells the exact same battery as the Indian OEM. Hopefully that will sort the problem.
 

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I see you're in PA , your description is what my bike sounds when trying to start in cool weather (40s and lower) sometimes have to start 2-3 times, but will start. Sends several codes having to do with low voltage. Hope this helps
 

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Lately our 2018 Chieftain Dark Horse has had a pause while the starter is cranking, not starting unless I give ever so slight throttle when if fires (if not it stalls), and some time backfiring once. Yesterday, I rode to work and got code C1038 when starting to ride home. I just did a voltage check and the voltage dropped to 6.6XX & came back up to 12.XXX while the starter was cranking. Battery tender was plugged in all day. Battery is fully charged. I thinking it time to replace the battery even though the bike has only been in service since Oct 24, 2017 (we bought the bike used & didn't renew any warranty before it expired, so no warranty). What are your thoughts? Anything else I can check?
Many times at dealers the used bikes will drain the batteries. Dealers don't bother to put battery tenders on the bikes that are on display. Most wear a battery will see is when it is left in a discharged state for a period of time. The battery will usually charge right back up but the overall life will be shortened. When I got my RM new the original battery only lasted about 3 years. Dean
 

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Update: New battery fitted today and normal service has resumed.
Learned something else today, new battery fitted so thought I would give it a run this morning, it was very cold and it was sluggish to start but did fire up ok. Left it to warm up while I got my gear on and when getting ready to leave I noted the battery light is flashing red. Thought it would go out after a few miles once it got some juice back in it, charging volts all looked good. 20 miles later later and light is still flashing, i'm then paranoid about stopping in case it will not start again, but got to where I needed to go and switched it off, turned it on again when I had done my business and it fired right up with no warning lights or faults and voltage was good. So guess once the bike has an episode for whatever fault it finds, it will not clear the warnings until you turn it off and restart, therefore resetting the system. Bike is 2018 Roadmaster bought secondhand with only 6500 miles and the OEM battery was goosed, as has been mentioned could have been sat around for months and never put on a charger becomes deeply discharged and is knackered before it's time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Last weekend I tightened up the ground from battery to frame. Checked voltage when running, charging about 14.5 volts (I'd say charging system is good). I did not do a load test yet. Rode to work Monday (was about 60F in the afternoon). Still seemed sluggish after sitting on battery tender for a few days. I'll keep an eye on it. May just replace the battery just to be sure it won't let me stuck somewhere.
 

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I'm having the same issue on my 2018 Chieftain with original battery (2k mile). It happened to me again yesterday. It wasn't too cold (45) and I had the bike on BT for a week. Typically, I have what sounds like a tough start, followed by the error message and engine light flashing. I normally will ride ~5 minutes to meet buddies, and the the problem resolves itself on restart. I rode about 75 miles yesterday with a few stops, zero issues or error messages. I was originally thinking about replacing my battery tender, but it sounds like the battery is a better place to start

. I'm not sure if this is a coincidence, but the issue seems to have started started right after my Stage 2 upgrade.
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Coincidence....I'm beginning to think not. Had similar issues with stage 2 on my 16 RM and also on my new 20 RM. If you think about the old days and putting cams in cars (70's or so) they would sometimes have a pause after the first crank and then start. Stage 2 with me acts like that. This pause (strain) might be affecting how the electronics are working or how much current the battery is serving out. Weakish batteries don't do well with these cams I'm thinking.
 

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My starter went out on my Roadmaster recently, it acted just like the battery was weak. In fact I replaced the battery before and it didn't help at all. Finally remembered some posts about the starter. Had it replaced and it starts better now than it ever did before!
 

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I had the same issues and fault codes but a new battery solved it and no problems since, strange though it seems to just affect the RM, I have CDH still on the OEM Battery now five years old and no problems.
 

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My starter on my 16 RM was replaced after the tech said he didn't like the sound of it. Had a bit of wheeze... New one cranked and sounded a lot better. The starter on my 2020 sounds 'normal' for want of a better word.
 
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