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What cuases hard starting after sitting for 2 weeks

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AS the subject states. Both my 01' XR650L and my GF's XT225 are very hard to start after sitting for prolonged storing. It can take 20 tries with full choke before the engine shows signs of even wanting to start. The engines are not flooding. Even after a week or two the engine is difficult to start and is worse the longer time between starts. If I start within days between starts there is no problem. Is this normal for others? The Xt225 is slightly more difficult to start but the sparkplug is easier to remove so I just pour a shot of gas in the cylinder.

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Try running the fuel out of the carb before storing. It's as simple as turning off the gas and letting the bike idle until it quits. Try it next time and see if it helps.

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SOmetimes mine does the same thing. It had sat for the last month unused and I fired it up the other day. The battery sounded tired and usually I have to drain the float bowl of the old fuel and it fires right up. This time it fired up on the third attempt without draining the bowl.

If it's going to sit turn the petcock to off and drain the float bowl.

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Must be bad fuel you guys have..Possibly why it's so cheap in the US. I can leave my bikes for months with the same fuel in them and they still start..Years would be a different story..But yeah,run it dry after a ride for added security.

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Must be bad fuel you guys have..Possibly why it's so cheap in the US. I can leave my bikes for months with the same fuel in them and they still start..Years would be a different story..But yeah,run it dry after a ride for added security.

My XRL has always been that way (I think the low compression makes it more sensitive), and on the 10% ethanol swill we are forced to run now, it's even worse.

Dave

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Some bikes really get mad when you don't ride them...

My street bikes didn't mind so much, but my son's XR80R would NEVER start after 3 days until I cracked the drain screw loose on the carb....

yellow gas for 3 dribbles, then clear. close the screw, and she starts first kick.

Everytime.

weird....

( only sat 3 days !!!!! )

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+1, turn the fuel off and drain the float bowl if the bike is going to sit. I turn the fuel off if the bike it going to sit long enough to cool down.

Must be bad fuel you guys have..Possibly why it's so cheap in the US.

It's not great, but that's not why it appears "cheap" to global onlookers.

I can leave my bikes for months with the same fuel in them and they still start..Years would be a different story..But yeah,run it dry after a ride for added security.

So can I, but the gas has still degraded very noticeably. I have some pretty pictures of my 600's intake port coated with a heavy layer of amber varnish after I ran it for maybe 10min on fuel that was several months old. The pinging was so bad I might as well have tried running Coleman fuel....although that wouldn't have varnished anything.

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Well I dont think its bad gas but hey who knows. I'll try shutting off the tank and emptying the float next time to see. I did try once flushing the float bowl prior to starting but then again the gas in the tank was as old as the gas in the bowl so that might be why it didnt help much. I wish I had some sort of primer system like on my skidoo. It almost seems like the gas doesn't get sucked into the cylinder after its sitting for a long time. If I put a small shot of the same gas in the sparkplug hole it will start right up.

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my 650L was also this way for the several years I had it. It always started but If it sat for 2 weeks or more it would always take several try's of cranking before it would start

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The FCR-MX carb has an accelerator pump that in addition to providing good throttle response makes cold starts somewhat easy by squirting raw fuel into the head, effectively "priming" the engine. In cold engines the fuel doesn't vaporize easily so you compensate by giving it more. Unfortunately the FCR is an expensive upgrade and might not even be possible in some cases.

I have a Yamaha XT 350 (no accel. Pump) and it does not start when cold - my normal starting routine includes a squirt of ether, then she fires up in one kick.

Does anyone know if EFI makes cold starts easy?

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I tried an XR650R carb earlier this year but was very impressed mainly because it lacked an excelerator pump as mentioned above. I might try the FCR carb if I can find one at a good price over the winter.

Thanks to everyone who responded here as I thought maybe I was the only one having this issue.

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Run fuel stabilizer. Honda sells stabilizer, made by Stabil for $4.50 a pint. Just add one ounce per tank full. I try to start my bike every couple of weeks, but if it has to sit for a month...it's good insurance.

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The volatile parts of the gas have diminished, to refresh them, lean the bike over, and let some gas run out of the overflow. Now it will start as usual.

Thank you.

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The volatile parts of the gas have diminished, to refresh them, lean the bike over, and let some gas run out of the overflow. Now it will start as usual.

Thank you.

As stated above I have essentially tried what you said by opening the float bowl drain to flush it prior to starting with no change.

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I even have this problem with my lawn mowers if they don't run for a few weeks.

I try to use Stabil whenever I know an engine is going to set up for a bit, but I have several engines to keep up with and don't always properly "park" them. I do believe that the 10% ethanol has made this problem worse, so I try to get all my fuel from a station I found that has NO ETHANOL.

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I forgot to mention that this seems to happen more often in humid areas. I suspect that the ethanol in the fuel pulls water out of the air(even through plastic tanks) and accelerates degradation. I live in the high desert where average humidity is below 25% for ¾ of the year, so that may explain why I don't have starting problems even with really stale gas.

Captain brings up a good point; the aromatic hydrocarbons generally are first to evaporate. Unfortunately they also tend to have the highest octanes.

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Well I dont think its bad gas but hey who knows. I'll try shutting off the tank and emptying the float next time to see. I did try once flushing the float bowl prior to starting but then again the gas in the tank was as old as the gas in the bowl so that might be why it didnt help much. I wish I had some sort of primer system like on my skidoo. It almost seems like the gas doesn't get sucked into the cylinder after its sitting for a long time. If I put a small shot of the same gas in the sparkplug hole it will start right up.

I drain the bowl with the gas off, wait for it to stop, turn on the gas, let it pee, close the drain.

Always starts right away, even after sitting for a month or more, with E10.

If yours is not the same, yes, you have an added problem- vacuum leak, enrichener doesn't work, lean low-speed jetting, weak spark, or low compression.

Dave

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