Tuesday, November 13, 2018

A new battery for Scarlett and lunchtime ride's views of Mount Evans

Went to start Scarlett's engine at around 9AM for a quick ride to snap some pics of Mount Evans while the conditions were clear....but when I pressed the starter button all I heard underneath the seat was a "klunk".


No lights whatsoever when the ignition switch was on, and I noticed the voltmeter (which is hooked up directly to the battery) would turn off.  It usually stays on (consuming very little energy).  Hmmm.

Removed the seat (minor PITA), swapped out each relay in turn with a new one.  Nada, no lights.

Finally thought to put a meter on the battery, it would register 12.6 volts with nothing on, then drop to 4.6 volts when I turned the ignition on.  Dammit.

So I removed the battery (another minor PITA), put it in Fiona's sidecar and rode to the local auto parts store.  It registered 4.5 volts at their store, so their tool couldn't test it.  But we both figured it was toast, $114 later, I was enroute home with a new battery, this time an AGM battery with 310 Cold Cranking Amps.

I installed the new battery, added cushioning pads under and behind and to one side of it.  Secured all the wiring that I loosened to do troubleshooting and Scarlett cranked right up at the hit of the starter button!  Sigh.

By now it was lunchtime and the usual hazy conditions had moved in with the temperature.  It had soared to 46°F (7°C) so no need for heated grips!  The sun was warm upon me as I rode to the same area I rode to yesterday.

The snow was gone from the roads, leaving just muddy conditions.

 Mount Evans

The battery had been replaced back in DEC of 2016 so it almost lasted me two years.  I guess I must be hard on batteries, perhaps stopping and starting too much while taking pictures.


RichardM said...

The batteries, even the AGM ones, don't seem to last very long. I'm o battery number 3 though the first one I changed within the first couple of months. I'm just using an AGM that I bought at Walmart.

dom chang said...

The auto parts clerk told me they only warranty motorcycle batteries for 3 months!

I guess they live a hard life.....

Jan Daub said...

Would a Lithium battery last longer in your cold clim???

dom chang said...

Not sure Colorado is really cold enough to kill batteries Jan, after all my rigs are usually parked inside the garage except when traveling...I even keep them charged up using a smart charger....I think it’s all the start/stopping I do when taking pics.