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Sudden deterioration in starting ability

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I recently bought a 2001 YZ125, very clean. I rode it for a while, but left it for a few months. It used to start first or second kick, but I left it for a few months and now it takes forever to start and doesn't even sound like it wants to start until it seems to suddenly burst to life.

Before I left it for the few months, I ran it in the cold and I think the float stuck and the engine was cutting at high revs; I hope I didn't damage it (anyway I only rode it for a few minutes like this). It fouled a plug, so I changed it, and tapped the carb bowl to free the float. When I pulled out the plug, it was very oily. It ran well when I did manage to start it, but then I stopped to take a break and tried to start it and it took forever again. I am running the same premix ratio as the previous owner did, but not same brand- problem?

The problem is I don't live where I keep the bike, so I can't start the engine every week or month or so to keep it healthy.

Anyone have any suggestions to what is wrong?

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Huh? A complete engine rebuild? All it needs is a pilot jet cleaning. At least look at it before tearing down the whole motor! Next time before you put it away drain the float bowl. There is a 17mm bolt at the bottom of the carb. Or turn the gas off and let it run till it dies.

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Huh? A complete engine rebuild? All it needs is a pilot jet cleaning. At least look at it before tearing down the whole motor! Next time before you put it away drain the float bowl. There is a 17mm bolt at the bottom of the carb. Or turn the gas off and let it run till it dies.

+1

Sounds like the carb just needs a decent cleaning.

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Check the cylinder and piston as well. 125 top ends can go from fine to low compression in the course of an hour.

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