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Thread: R1100RT battery issues?

  1. #1
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    R1100RT battery issues?

    After a couple months of not riding yesterday the bike was hesitant to crank so I put it on the charger and within a few minutes it started and was fine the rest of the day. I left the charger on overnight and this morning it started when I pulled it out of the garage and parked it for an hour in the driveway. When I went to start it again something peculiar happened. The dash lit up fine but as soon as I hit the starter I heard a click and the dash went dim, not out just dim. So I hooked the charger back up and after a while it indicated charged the lights are still dim and I hear a faint clicking when I try to start it. I get it that the clicking is a sign of not enough juice but am puzzled by the sudden failure and not being able to charge the battery from one day to the next.
    I have to admit that the battery is about ten years old so hopefully that's my problem but I'm used to car batteries dying slowly. I guess one question I have is if the sudden failure is typical.

  2. #2
    Fortis Fortuna Adiuvat Omega Man's Avatar
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    Well, you are about double the “best” general battery life. You need a battery and chances are you will be good to go.

    Someone will chime in on battery suggestions.

    I will move this to the Oilhead section later.

    OM
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  3. #3
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    A new battery would be great. Just was surprised it dying suddenly but I guess after ten years I am not surprised. Just checked on it again. Charger is lit up green, dash lights still dim and no juice for the starter with the charger hooked up or unplugged.

  4. #4
    Fortis Fortuna Adiuvat Omega Man's Avatar
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    I have never heard of a battery lasting that long. These batteries seem to be rather iffy.

    You are probably seeing a connection of the electrolyte which has no real power behind it.

    One of my experiences-

    https://forums.bmwmoa.org/showthread...died-yesterday

    OM
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  5. #5
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    I'll get the battery replaced and report back. Thanks for the input.

  6. #6
    Fortis Fortuna Adiuvat Omega Man's Avatar
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    Sounds good

    OM
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddincer View Post
    A new battery would be great. Just was surprised it dying suddenly but I guess after ten years I am not surprised. Just checked on it again. Charger is lit up green, dash lights still dim and no juice for the starter with the charger hooked up or unplugged.
    My bet is you've got a short between cells in the battery. Only one thing to do - replace it.

  8. #8
    You just had a cell connector internal to the battery crack and/or break. You may read normal voltage but it can't flow any significant current. This is the typical failure mode for AGM and Gel batteries. They cram a lot of plates in a small space and they are mechanically fragile.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
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  9. #9
    Registered User dieselyoda's Avatar
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    If ten years out of a battery isn't good enough, you can always take two months to determine you have a bad battery and read this: https://forums.bmwmoa.org/showthread...-Battery-Redux

    I live in a place where if a battery lasts 4 years, I go buy a lottery ticket............Haven't won the lottery yet.

    Believe it or not, almost universally, every battery manufacturer will say hot-cold, charge-discharge cycles have less influence on battery life than previously thought and harmonic resonance is the most considerable factor, hence, new vehicles are wrapped in blankets and battery boxes are on some sort of rubber or silicone suspension.

    I'm not sure I entirely agree but when they can make a GRP 24 with the same CCA as a D4, I'm thinking technology is pushing the limits of a bike made +20 years ago.

    And, a good battery is less expensive than a good tire, just one of them.
    1997 R1100RT, 1981 KZ 440 LTD, R80RT, R90/6 sidecar, K1100RS,1983 K100RS (Cafe now)

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  10. #10
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    New battery did the trick. Interestingly the old battery still measured 12.6 volts but obviously not able to deliver the amps.
    I should be good for another 10 years (just kidding).

  11. #11
    Fortis Fortuna Adiuvat Omega Man's Avatar
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    You might want to have that old battery bronzed
    Nice simple fix. These bikes ask a lot of small batteries.
    OM
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  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Omega Man View Post
    These bikes ask a lot of small batteries.
    OM
    Indeed. My K75 which brings 250cc to compression at a time came with a 30 amp hour (ah) battery. The "little" one which would also fit was a 19ah battery. But Voni's F800 came with a 14ah battery. And our G310GS bikes come with a (gasp) 9ah battery.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

  13. #13
    Fortis Fortuna Adiuvat Omega Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post
    And our G310GS bikes come with a (gasp) 9ah battery.
    Yeah, gives new meaning to the term "starting battery".

    I have never had any worries "pop" starting a chain-drive bike........so there is a chance with a low battery.

    OM
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  14. #14
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddincer View Post
    I have to admit that the battery is about ten years old so hopefully that's my problem but I'm used to car batteries dying slowly. I guess one question I have is if the sudden failure is typical.
    Yes it is. Everybody's different, but every battery failure I've had has been sudden ... that is, I've never been able to detect one failing slowly.
    Kent Christensen
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    '12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by ddincer View Post
    ... but I'm used to car batteries dying slowly. I guess one question I have is if the sudden failure is typical.
    See post #8, this thread.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

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