Kawasaki Vulcan Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone, I am pretty new here and hoping you guys and gals can help me with some troubleshooting.

My bike is a 2009 Vulcan 900 Custom SE with just over 12k miles. Here is some background on my current issue. Late last week I rode to work. On the way to work the bike ran fine, no issues what so ever. At the end of the day I started the bike and let it warm up and everything was business as usual. The bike ran fine until about halfway through the trip home. I was cruising along at about 65 mph and slowed down slightly to go over a large dip in the road. Upon accelerating I got about 1/4 way into the throttle and the bike started making a noise I cannot describe well and seemed like it had no power. I downshifted, the problem persisted. I kept on the throttle while it made what I can best describe as a BOP BOP BOP BOP BOP sound, not backfiring but very sluggish and not wanting to accelerate. The rest of the ride home it was difficult to get the bike moving from a stop, I would have to let the clutch out very slowly and give it a very small amount of throttle to even get moving. I experienced the same sluggish feeling, sound, and loss of power the rest of the way home.

To address the issue I called a local shop to get their input. The mechanic told me that it sounds like I had water in my fuel. It did rain while I was at work the day I rode, which is the only thing that changed between the ride there and the ride home. Since speaking to him I siphoned some fuel out of the tank into a mason jar to check for water. There was no definite line of water and fuel but I did notice several tiny shiny bubble setting to the bottom of the jar. The day it happened I added Sea Foam to the tank. After speaking to the mechanic I added a bottle of ISO Heet to the tank in hopes of absorbing the water. I went for a ride the day after adding ISO Heet and the bike did slightly better, but still not back to normal. Today, I said screw it and drained the tank and filled it with premium fuel and Sea Foam. The bike ran much better today, however the sluggishness and BOP BOP BOP BOP sound is still occurring intermittently. With the most frequent occurance of the issue being during accelerating from a dead stop and if I am in a gear that is too high for the driving condition. If I give the bike more than 1/4 throttle now it will act appropriately the majority of the time, however the issue persists. I have also installed a new air filter.

Any info or suggestions you folks can send my way is greatly appreciated. I am no mechanic, but I like to give things a try on my own before dropping a ton of cash at the dealership. Thanks for reading my giant wall of text!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,489 Posts
Had similar problem on my 9,Ran couple tanks of ethanol free w seafoam,put fresh oem filter in, did clear up,not sure this is related,maybe others will chime
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Mine was pretty awful also. I have been looking into how to change the fuel filter by from what I can tell it is part of the pump and can not be changed without replacing the pump.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
163 Posts
They have not. I have never checked valves before, is it an easy task or something best left for a mechanic?
Great video on Youtube on how to do it, whats involved, etc. It doesn't look hard, just a lot of steps. Need the tools and shims of course. I bought the whole set of shims on Amazon for $60-70. Probably doing the math on the shims is the hardest part. And chances are you wont have to replace any.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
307 Posts
Does it happen when the bike is in neutral or only under load?
Could it be a brake dragging or some other mechanical resistance?
Does the resistance feel the same in each/all the gears?
When you pull in the clutch, does it coast normally?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Does it happen when the bike is in neutral or only under load?
Could it be a brake dragging or some other mechanical resistance?
Does the resistance feel the same in each/all the gears?
When you pull in the clutch, does it coast normally?
I took it out for a ride today. It is improved from when it initially began, but not back to normal. It is currently very sluggish from a stop. If I rev the bike up a little extra while releasing the clutch it does better. While riding it now has a kind of hiccup (best way I can describe it) that will happen briefly. When I initially start the bike it's high idle is weird. It will idle very low for a bit and then idle higher. The high idle sounds like a low idle if that makes any sense. When in motion with the clutch in the bike coasts normally. I do not think it is a brake sticking. The "hiccup" happens in all the gears. When accelerating after slowing to enter a turn, for example, the engine will rev and briefly stutter or miss and then continue to accelerate as usual.

I checked all the wires and hoses I could get to this evening thinking I might have a vacuum issue or something like that. Everything that I could get to was connected, no loose or broken wires or hoses from what I could see.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,748 Posts
The plugs actually do not look that bad, but there have been some reports of NGK's having intermittent failures.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
The plugs actually do not look that bad, but there have been some reports of NGK's having intermittent failures.
I didn't think they looked horrible, but changed them anyway. Since doing so the weird idle and hesitation have stopped. I rode for about 30 minutes today after changing the plugs and experienced none of the previous issues.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
383 Posts
I had the same issue as Hugolongstroker, but with one intermittent plug for the front cylinder. I replaced both plugs with NGK iridium spark plugs. They have been in there a year with zero issues.
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top