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Discussion Starter #1
Ok guys,

I think i'm loosing faith in humanity.
I bought a 2008 TW last summer with 450 total miles from a 71 year old man. The bike was pristinely stock until I changed the gearing to a 15 tooth front and 47 tooth rear sprocket, and added a luggage rack and aluminum skid plate. No leaks of any kind and still looks brand new. The old timer said he replaced the battery before the sale. Last winter I did not have it on the battery tender here in upstate NY, and noticed the battery would loose charge within a month if I hadn't run it. It does get down into the minus temps a couple times during a typical winter here. Now it has gotten worse. If I take it off the trickle charger it wont start within minuets. I checked the battery and found it almost empty of juice (acid). The local auto parts store sold me battery acid which I used to top it off and recharged it but it still wont hold a charge. Voltage show the charging system is charging while the bike is running.
Would a new battery go bad that fast over just one winter? or could the old timer have lied that it was a new battery. is there a way to tell? Deltran battery tenders aren't high amperage, but after a few minuets the bikes starts with no problem from dead battery, and continues to start the rest of the day like nothings wrong.

Baffled,
 

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Ok guys,

I think i'm loosing faith in humanity.
I bought a 2008 TW last summer with 450 total miles from a 71 year old man. The bike was pristinely stock until I changed the gearing to a 15 tooth front and 47 tooth rear sprocket, and added a luggage rack and aluminum skid plate. No leaks of any kind and still looks brand new. The old timer said he replaced the battery before the sale. Last winter I did not have it on the battery tender here in upstate NY, and noticed the battery would loose charge within a month if I hadn't run it. It does get down into the minus temps a couple times during a typical winter here. Now it has gotten worse. If I take it off the trickle charger it wont start within minuets. I checked the battery and found it almost empty of juice (acid). The local auto parts store sold me battery acid which I used to top it off and recharged it but it still wont hold a charge. Voltage show the charging system is charging while the bike is running.
Would a new battery go bad that fast over just one winter? or could the old timer have lied that it was a new battery. is there a way to tell? Deltran battery tenders aren't high amperage, but after a few minuets the bikes starts with no problem from dead battery, and continues to start the rest of the day like nothings wrong.

Baffled,
I have no reason to doubt the old timer. There have been sooo many instances of brand new batteries failing that I am sure this is just another lemon. I believe the old guy probably didn't follow the directions for preparing his new battery for service. The great news is........... the TW battery is dirt cheap. Or at least it can be.



Tom
 

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Thank you,

I'll try a replacement and cross my fingers. I love my t-dub. The only bike I own I can hold wide open most of the time and not be killed by.
If every bike was a T-dub, the world would be a much better place.

Pete
Upstate NY is a big place. Where are you located? A few of us over here near the finger lakes region.......



Tom
 

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Does the battery look like it is one year old or 9 years old? Is it brand name battery or a no name one from ebay?

Most motorcycle batteries are only warrantied for a year or less these days. I know that the last couple that I have purchased only lasted for a year or two, with the sealed AGM ones being the worst in my experience.

I don't know who you should blame - the manufacturer, the old guy, or yourself for not checking fluid level. It really doesn't matter, so just get a new battery with the longest warranty you can get, take good care of it, and hope that you get more than a couple of years out of it.

You could also install a kicker. . . . . . .
 

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................
....... I checked the battery and found it almost empty of juice (acid). ..........
My guess is that the previous owner did not prepare the battery properly.

Lead acid batteries usually come with the acid packaged separately. The purchaser then adds the acid, distilled water, and then charges the battery.

Once the original amount of acid is installed, you should not need to add any more acid for the life of the battery, only distilled water as needed.

Think of this as an opportunity to get rid of a battery that may leak battery acid all over your bike, should it take a spill.

Get an AGM battery that doesn't leak.

jb
 

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I bought a good, well-known name brand AGM for my TW just because I'd be biking alone all the time and have no kick start. It lasted about 3 weeks and crapped out flat in the middle of a ride. Was fine, then all of a sudden it's like it there wasn't even a battery in the bike. Got it home, charged it overnight, showed good voltage, put a test light on it and it wouldn't even light it up. Online store I bought it from asked for nothing more than a photo of the top of the battery showing the serial number and refunded my money. Put my factory battery back in and have been riding with that all summer without any problem. So...stuff happens. Cold temps are hard on a partially discharged battery.
 

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If a bad battery causes you to lose faith in humanity you'd better prepare yourself for much much worse. Because this will be like nothing compared to what most people experience.
Said the guy named bad luck. I agree - everyone should be prepared for much worse. AGM are expensive but worth it in my opinion. But if your don't ride in the winter you really need to have any battery on a tender. Even better remove it from the bike and store in the house on a tender. Cheers
 

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You may want to consider a lithium battery - I got one about 10 months ago and it's been great. Barely touch the start button and the bikes running. It holds a charge very well. while traveling with the Dub strapped to the back of my motorhome the battery never hesitated in the 2 months on the road. While at home I do have it hooked up to a LITHIUM specific battery charger.
It is a Battery Tender lithium - it's half the size of the stock battery and a third of the weight.
 

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I replaced the stock battery with an AGM the day I took the bike home from the showroom. That one lasted 3 years. I replaced it with another almost identical AGM and that one is on its fourth year. I never had a problem once I disconnected the always on rear turn signals and the low beam. This was only needed because I often go so slowly that the stator isn't producing enough output to keep the charge up. VERY few people have this problem!

I put the battery on a Battery Tender Jr. about once every three weeks for a day or so all winter long.....this is what has kept my AGM healthy all this time. (sometimes even in the summer if I haven't ridden for three weeks.)
 

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If that's the only problem you have had you should be very happy. My battery will go about 6 or 7 months and want a drink. I wouldn't go back to the place that sold you battery acid either as they dont know what they are doing. You never add acid to a battery. Use distilled or deionized water. The electrolyte should always cover the plates or the battery is being damaged.
 

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If a bad battery causes you to lose faith in humanity you'd better prepare yourself for much much worse. Because this will be like nothing compared to what most people experience.
Ha, that is classic.

Bought my bike used but the seller had a new battery in it. Nothing wrong with it but I changed to an AGM almost immediately. Any motorcycle should be maintenance-free IMO and especially one like the TW that invariably may be on its side (in the dirt/mud or sand hopefully) certainly doesn't need a battery with acid or any other liquid in it spilling out.

Since yours is toast whether from your seller or from yourself (doesn't matter now) I'd say that is the way you should go for a new one. I keep all my bikes on a battery tender and have been getting 10 to 13 years out of them which is a record for me.

You don't have a real location listed for you in your signature line so not sure where in NY you are? You are welcome to the battery I am not using, brand-new as far as I know and may in fact restore your faith in humanity. PM me if you are interested. Getting it in person or shipping cost would be on you from 10804 zip code.

And yes... you can buy a brand-new average or highest-end motorcycle in the world and it can come with a bad battery. Has happened to me.

Larger one pictured is available to you. Perfect fit into a TW. The smaller one is the AGM I replaced it with.
IMG_5074.JPG
 

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Cheer up my friend, things could be much worse. The old timer, (watch it, I'm 67) might have just forgot. I love my Lithium Deltran battery.
 

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Ha, that is classic.

Bought my bike used but the seller had a new battery in it. Nothing wrong with it but I changed to an AGM almost immediately. Any motorcycle should be maintenance-free IMO and especially one like the TW that invariably may be on its side (in the dirt/mud or sand hopefully) certainly doesn't need a battery with acid or any other liquid in it spilling out.

Since yours is toast whether from your seller or from yourself (doesn't matter now) I'd say that is the way you should go for a new one. I keep all my bikes on a battery tender and have been getting 10 to 13 years out of them which is a record for me.

You don't have a real location listed for you in your signature line so not sure where in NY you are? You are welcome to the battery I am not using, brand-new as far as I know and may in fact restore your faith in humanity. PM me if you are interested. Getting it in person or shipping cost would be on you from 10804 zip code.


And yes... you can buy a brand-new average or highest-end motorcycle in the world and it can come with a bad battery. Has happened to me.

Larger one pictured is available to you. Perfect fit into a TW. The smaller one is the AGM I replaced it with.
View attachment 127737

And you offer a battery to another member, so I have to offer one to you.
The R100RS that I just got has a brand new battery in it. I use only Battery Tender Lithiums in my rider (not show) bikes. And this thing rides NICE!
My lithium should be here by Monday, so that battery that is in it is yours if you want it......
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Hey everyone,

Thanks for all the great posts,

I really appreciate all the feedback. At 56 I'm not far from an old timer myself. At $2500 I couldn't bitch at the price of a 2008 in this pristine condition. It's just another bike in my collection that's worth far more to me than anyone's willing to pay for it. And that's fine with me.
I've got three deltran battery tenders now. Two juniors, and one duel battery unit I've mounted to the roof rafters of the attached shed on my home which holds two machines. This winter it will probably hold my Concours 14 and most probably my wifes Burgman 400. The plastic shed detatched from my home will most likely hold the 2014 Honda CTX 700 duel clutch on sale for $5500 if anyones interested, and the TW, so I can access it for winter play. None of my deltrans are for lithium so I'll probably stick with stock lead acid, although I'll be sure to run a lead out there to power the two single juniors this year.
For those finger lakers interested, I'm live in a small city about about 20 miles north east of Amsterdam. (Gloversville) Tdubs around here are as scares as my concours. Meaning I'd love to ride with like bikes, but the finger lakes are a long painful ride on this little machine. I'm thinking of studding the original tires for Ice play this winter and already have a set of the the more road going brigstone tires in the shed. maybe next year i'll be willing to do a overnighter out that way to ride with you all. It would be cool.

Pete
 
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