VTX 1300 Troubleshooting
ENGINE DOES NOT START OR IS HARD TO START
     

Possible Causes

1. Check fuel flow to carburetor Not reaching carburetor
  • Clogged fuel line and filter
  • Clogged fuel tank breather
  • Sticking float valve
  • Faulty fuel pump

 

  Reaching carburetor



 
2 Perform a spark test Weak or no spark
  • Faulty spark plug
  • Fouled spark plug
  • Loose or disconnected ignition system wires
  • Faulty ignition pulse generator
  • Faulty ignition coil
  • Faulty ignition ignition control module (ICM)
  • Faulty engine stop switch

 

  Good spark



 
3 Remove and inspect spark plugs Wet plug
  • Flooded carburetor
  • Starting Enrichment (SE) valve ON position (open)
  • Throttle Valve open
  • Dirty air cleaner
  Good Condition



 
4 Start by following normal procedure Engine starts but stops
  • Improper choke operation
  • Incorrectly adjusted carburetor
  • Leaking carburetor insulator or manifold base
  • Improper ignition timing (Faulty ICM or ignition pulse generator)
  • Contaminated fuel
  Engine does not start



 
5 Test cylinder compression Low Compression
  • Valve stuck open
  • Worn cylinder and piston rings
  • Damaged cylinder head gasket
  • Seized valve
  • Improper valve timing
 
ENGINE LACKS POWER
 

Possible Causes

1 Raise wheel off the ground and spin by hand Wheel does not spin freely
  • Brake dragging
  • Worn or damaged wheel bearings
  • Final gear bearing damage
  • Make sure it's in neutral dummy :)
  • Buy a vowel

 

  Wheel spins freely



 
2 Check tire pressure Pressure low
  • Faulty tire valve
  • Punctured tire
  Pressure normal



 
3 Accelerate rapidly low to second Engine speed doesn't change accordingly when clutch is released
  • Clutch slipping
  • Worn clutch disks/plates
  • Warped clutch disks/plates
  • Weak clutch springs
  • Additive in engine oil - like what?...chunks of concrete?
  Engine speed reduced when clutch is released



 
4 Accelerate lightly Engine speed does not increase
  • Starting enrichment (SE) valve in ON position (open)
  • Clogged air cleaner
  • Restricted fuel flow
  • Clogged muffler
  • Restricted fuel tank breather
  • Go on a diet
  Engine speed increases



 
5 Check ignition timing Incorrect
  • Faulty Ignition control (ICM)
  • Faulty ignition pulse generator
  Correct



 
6 Test cylinder compression Low Compression
  • Valve clearance too small
  • Worn cylinder and piston rings
  • Damaged cylinder and piston rings
  Normal compression



 
7 Check carburetor for clogs Clogged
  • Carburetor not serviced frequently enough
  Not Clogged



 
8 Remove and inspect spark plugs Fouled or discolored
  • Plugs not serviced frequently enough
  • Incorrect spark plug heat range
  Not fouled or discolored



 
9 Check oil level and condition Incorrect
  • Oil level too high
  • Oil level too low
  • Contaminated oil
  Correct



 
10 Remove cylinder head cover and inspect lubrication Valve train not lubricated properly
  • Clogged oil passage
  • Clogged oil orifice
  Valve train lubricated properly



 
11 Check for engine overheating Overheating
  • Coolant level too low
  • Fan motor not working (Faulty fan motor or fan motor switch)
  • Thermostat stuck closed
  • Excessive carbon build-up in combustion chamber
  • Use of poor quality fuel
  • Clutch slipping
  • Lean fuel mixture
  • Wrong type of fuel...yep...Diesel will do funny things to a gasoline engine
  Not overheating



 
12 Accelerate or run at high speeds Engine knocks
  • Worn piston and cylinder
  • Wrong type of fuel
  • Excessive carbon build-up in combustion chamber
  • Ignition timing too advanced (Faulty ICM)
  • Lean fuel mixture
  STILL not running right



 
  You're screwed - buy a new bike    
 
POOR PERFORMANCE AT LOW AND IDLE SPEEDS
  Possible Causes
1 Check carburetor pilot screw Incorrect
  • See section 5 of the VTX service manual
  Correct



 
2 Check for leaking carburetor insulator Leaking
  • Loose insulation bands
  • Damaged insulator
  No leaks



 
3 Perform spark test Weak or intermittent spark
  • Faulty spark plug
  • Fouled spark plug
  • Loose or disconnect ignition system wires
  • Faulty ignition pulse generator
  • Faulty ignition coil
  • Faulty engine stop switch
  • Faulty ignition control module (ICM)
  Good spark



 
4 Check ignition timing Incorrect
  • Faulty ignition control module (ICM)
  • Faulty ignition pulse generator

 

 
POOR PERFORMANCE AT HIGH SPEED
  Possible Causes
1 Disconnect fuel tube at carburetor Fuel flow restricted
  • Restricted fuel tube
  • restricted fuel tank breather
  • Clogged fuel filter
  • Faulty fuel valve
  • Faulty fuel pump
  Fuel flows freely



 
2 Check carburetor for clogs Clogged
  • Carburetor not serviced enough
  • Try boots or sneakers...Clogs just look a little funny on a motorcycle
  Not clogged



 
3 Check valve timing Incorrect
  • Cam sprockets not installed properly
  Correct



 
4 Check ignition timing Incorrect
  • Faulty ignition control module (ICM)
  • Faulty ignition pulse generator
  Correct



 
5 Check valve spring Weak
  • Faulty valve spring
 
POOR HANDLING
  Possible Causes
1 If steering is heavy
  • Steering stem adjustment nut too tight
  • Damage steering head bearings
2 If either wheel wobbles
  • Excessive wheel bearing play
  • Bent rim
  • Improperly installed wheel hub
  • Excessively worn swingarm pivot bearings
  • Bent frame
3 If motorcycle pulls to one side
  • Front and rear wheels not aligned
  • Bent fork
  • Bent swingarm
  • Bent axle
  • Bent frame