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Discussion Starter #1
I've had my 2007/ 400 for about five years. Been riding other stuff for 30+ years. This was my favorite bike, very dependable, until I replaced the battery. I have since re-replaced the battery twice and my electrical problem is still around. Just not enough juice to turn over. My mechanic troubleshot, replaced the starter relay. He tells me that the charging system is good, no codes, no draw on the battery. Still, my Burg starts up initially but only if right off the tender, then I end up getting stranded when I stop because she won't start without a jump. I don't want to push it home anymore. What should I look at next to try and get the gremlins out? Thx.
 

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That's a tough one! I have no answer for you, but I'm sure guys will give you some ideas, good luck to you.
 

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This may sound simple and stupid, but is your trunk light on? Any Small draw on the battery could do it.

Does it draw when turned off?
 

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What you describe has all the symptoms of a battery with one or more weak cells--they will charge and provide one burst of power but are then all done until the next charge.

How does the current battery fare under a higher-currrent (say 50A) draw-down test, or better yet a conductance based test meter? --after being fully bench-charged and rested?

Harbor Freight has a nice carbon-pile high current tester for $50, and a great conductance based tester for $80--either one will tell your the true condition of the battery. If the battery is OK then it is either being sapped by something on the scoot, or has been damaged by being over/poorly charged because of a bad rectifier/regulator.

Carbon-pile tester:



Conductance tester:



I have one of each: the former for more than 10 years, the latter for 2 or 3--both work like new...

Have you monitored the system voltage while riding? It should be greater than 12.5 VB and less than 15.0 V at all times except at idle and just after starting the engine...
 

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Actually Suzuki's spec says regulated voltage can go as high as 15.5 volts and should be somewhere between 14 and 15.5 volts at 5,000 rpm.
 

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We had the same problem with our 2012 400. It even cooked a new battery. Turned out to be the trunk light that was not going off when closed. Shut it off completely, problem solved.
 

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Wait your saying if you ride somewhere and shut it off, then try and restart the battery is to weak? If this is true then the battery is not getting charged and the bike is depleting it while your riding, which is likely a failure in the charging system. But maybe I am not understanding what your problem is right either.

If you restart right away it restarts, but if you let it sit a few hours then its dead? In this scenario the draw on the battery from the trunk light could do it, but also make sure your not turning key to far locking the handle bars or the running lights stay on. This will kill it fast - ask me how I know ;)
 

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Has the rectifier been tested properly? The alternator may be charging but the battery may not be receiving the proper charge. In fact, strange as it may sound, it may be overcharging due to a bad rectifier and cooking the new battery making it behave the way it is.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
All good info

I am going to look into the rectifier issue. How do I get to it and test it "properly"? It seems that something is effecting the battery in a bad way (overcharging?) because my 2nd new battery developed a leak on the positive pole. no draw on the battery, on or off.
 

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I am going to look into the rectifier issue. How do I get to it and test it "properly"? It seems that something is effecting the battery in a bad way (overcharging?) because my 2nd new battery developed a leak on the positive pole. no draw on the battery, on or off.
This is a classic symptom of overcharging.

Here is the procedure foi checking the rectifier diodes, you'll need a multimeter with a diode check function--most all, even the cheapest like this from HF, have such a function:



This does not test the voltage regulator, however simply monitoring the system voltage will affirm (or not) its proper operation...
 

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You may want to check the earth to the rectifier. The rectifier is mounted on the left side of the bike at the front under and to the left of the left headlight. You can see it if you bend down and look under the front headlight/legshield area. It's that thing that has loads of cooling fins on it (just in case you are not sure what to look for).
 
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