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Old 06-04-2019, 08:25 AM   #1
Sorvacci
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Anyone else need yearly battery replacement?

Morning all! I've been riding a 2003 Anniversary VRSCA since 2013, got it completely OEM. The original battery was still in it when I got it, and then it died after maybe a year or two. I imagine the previous owner kept it on a tender, maybe that's why the battery lasted so long. I live in the city and keep it parked in a garage without access to an electrical connection, so can't do the tender. The battery now dies consistently every year, and I can't picture why. Last one, I installed back in June 2018, and it had died by that November / December.

Any thoughts? And does anyone have a battery recommendation? I got a MotoBatt last summer because they said they have a 2 year warranty... when I went to file the replacement with them, they gave me a laundry list of requirements I have to do to fulfill them, and you know how hard it is to access the Vrod battery... I wouldn't recommend their product.

Any input on what might be causing the constant draining as well as new battery recommendations would be so appreciated!
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Old 06-04-2019, 08:53 AM   #2
DaveK
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Alarm will drain the battery "fairly" quickly.

When you say dies, is it that it will drain to the point of shorting cells so that it won't fully charge, or do you mean something else?

Maybe get a good sized jump pack and keep it plugged into that. Easier to unplug and take in to charge and return to bike than pulling the battery. Just have to remember to do it every so often. No, I have no idea how often - depends on the jump pack...
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Old 06-04-2019, 09:34 AM   #3
Sorvacci
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveK View Post
Alarm will drain the battery "fairly" quickly.

When you say dies, is it that it will drain to the point of shorting cells so that it won't fully charge, or do you mean something else?

Maybe get a good sized jump pack and keep it plugged into that. Easier to unplug and take in to charge and return to bike than pulling the battery. Just have to remember to do it every so often. No, I have no idea how often - depends on the jump pack...

The battery drains to the point that I can't even charge it (there is an area where the garage has allowed to to try plugging it in over night and seeing what happens, and the tender light just blinks, doesn't charge). Can jump packs be connected to a tender possibly?
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Old 06-04-2019, 09:39 AM   #4
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No SLA starting battery out there is going to stand up to deep discharges without being damaged, they are not designed to be drawn below 85%.

You can look at lithium batteries, they have a much lower rate of self-discharge and also have internal protection to prevent deep discharge.
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Old 06-04-2019, 07:39 PM   #5
RustyG
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How often do you ride? How many miles do you put on the bike in a month? Do you have a security system and do you activate it when not riding?
'
Frequent riding will keep the battery charged.
The security system, if you have one and activated, will drain a battery in a week or so if not charged up either via a battery tender or frequent long rides.
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Old 06-05-2019, 10:41 AM   #6
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Man, you must be filthy rich! I would need to double my annual motorcycle maintenance budget if I was going to be buying a new battery every year lol

Get a quality battery and a quality motorcycle-specific, desulphating battery trickle charger. I have a seven year old Yuasa battery still running strong on a CTEK battery charger.

PS: Are you actually TESTING the batteries before you replace them? Or just trying to turn the bike on, it doesn't turn on --> buy a new battery?

You should be testing them out. You might find that they're still good.
Here's how I test mine:
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Old 06-05-2019, 11:52 AM   #7
darendt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sorvacci View Post
Morning all! I've been riding a 2003 Anniversary VRSCA since 2013, got it completely OEM. The original battery was still in it when I got it, and then it died after maybe a year or two. I imagine the previous owner kept it on a tender, maybe that's why the battery lasted so long. I live in the city and keep it parked in a garage without access to an electrical connection, so can't do the tender. The battery now dies consistently every year, and I can't picture why. Last one, I installed back in June 2018, and it had died by that November / December.

Any thoughts? And does anyone have a battery recommendation? I got a MotoBatt last summer because they said they have a 2 year warranty... when I went to file the replacement with them, they gave me a laundry list of requirements I have to do to fulfill them, and you know how hard it is to access the Vrod battery... I wouldn't recommend their product.

Any input on what might be causing the constant draining as well as new battery recommendations would be so appreciated!
Buy a Shorai Lithium Iron battery. Shaves 12 pounds off your bike and you dont need a tender with them.
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Old 06-11-2019, 09:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darendt View Post
Buy a Shorai Lithium Iron battery. Shaves 12 pounds off your bike and you dont need a tender with them.
? He's in poconos frigid winters hard on lithium as well. weight savings is phenomenal but you will need special charger and atleast in my case only got 2 years out of lithium vs 1yr for stock and huge$$$. Id say no matter what direction you go you need trickle charger to maintain peak condition unless your a daily commuter.
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Old 06-11-2019, 09:48 PM   #9
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If you have the H-D alarm, expect about a 100 milliamp/0.1 amp constant drain on the bike. The computers and electronics have some parasite drain as well.

It all adds up.

I've had similar thoughts when considering how to store a bike with no power available-- I came up with two possible solutions (although I never followed through, so no promises if either is feasible).....

1. Motorcycle kill switch. Wire this inline with the battery, and when stored, it will kill all draw from the battery (Flip switch to store, flip back to ride).

2. Charge the motorcycle battery from a deep-cycle RV battery. That way you can on occasion charge the RV battery and keep the Moto battery in good shape. (This is probably complicated, but doable).

I'm not an electrical engineer, but this is what I came up with. Might work, might not.
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Old 06-12-2019, 03:53 PM   #10
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Yeah... or just take the battery out instead of doing all that...
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Old 06-12-2019, 07:43 PM   #11
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Quote:
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Yeah... or just take the battery out instead of doing all that...
Heh. Easier said than done on a VRSC.

Remove top tin. Remove upper airbox cover (good luck with that clip in the front!). Possibly remove air filter and air filter cap (depending on clearance). Disconnect positive and negative from battery. Remove rubber battery holder. Wiggle the damn thing out. Drink a beer. Curse H-D. Repeatedly.

Installation is the reverse. Don't forget to look for the little rubber nubs that the airbox cover posts into in the front when you invariably knock one out somewhere in your bike.

The F is even worse since you have to unscrew the side plastic fake intake pieces-- that's just insult to injury.

It's really not something that you want to do more than once in a veeeery long while-- hence my suggestions with leaving the battery in place.

But, that's just me.

R.
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Old 06-13-2019, 07:40 AM   #12
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You might try pulling the master fuse, I'm not sure if that disables everything or not. Or, you could just disconnect one of the battery wires at the battery, leave the battery in the bike but disconnect it, very easy to do.

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Old 06-13-2019, 08:28 AM   #13
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You might try pulling the master fuse, I'm not sure if that disables everything or not. Or, you could just disconnect one of the battery wires at the battery, leave the battery in the bike but disconnect it, very easy to do.
...
Yes, pulling master fuse will disconnect the battery from all motorcycle electronic components that would drain the battery.

The high current connection from the battery positive to the starter solenoid will still be there so a short to ground at the solenoid is still possible. Also, since this will shut down the security system, you need to make sure the security system isn't armed before pulling the master fuse. On bikes with auto arming security you need to turn the ignition on with the fob present and then turn the ignition off. You now have 5 seconds to remove the master fuse before the bike security system turns on.

This master fuse removal is much easier to do than disconnecting the battery and should always be done before disconnecting the battery anyway.
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Old 06-13-2019, 10:53 AM   #14
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On the original-sized battery in my 2004, I ended up replacing the battery every 3-4 years, even with running on a good battery tender. When the wide tire bikes came out, with the larger battery, I switched to the bigger-sized battery (with the requisite airbox modifications to fit it) and between that, and keeping the bike on the tender all of the time, I've yet to have to replace the battery again, going on 5 or 6 years now.
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Old 06-13-2019, 11:18 AM   #15
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The problem with pulling the master fuse is that you still have to deal with self-discharge on the battery itself. Depending on storage length this can also be a factor in battery damage.
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