No fuel pump buzz, won't start (600+ miles)

filip989

Finally made it
Location
Croatia
Hi everyone.

So, I have around 670 miles on my Himalayan, bought in September.

I took it to work today and while heading home it wouldn't start. I took a couple of minutes and a few turns of the key on/off. I did notice lately that it doesn't want to start easily when it's colder, but one-two attempts got ride of that so I didn't give it much thought.

Today, as said, was almost impossible to start it. One thing to notice - there was NO fuel pump buzz when I turned it on.
After it started and let it idle for a bit (everything normal, around 1200-1300 rpm). I have 5 km from home to work and half way home I had to stop at a railroad crossing. I left in in neutral while waiting for two trains to pass, so I was sitting for some time.

It shut off after about 2-3 minutes. Tried starting it, took 3 tries (turned the key off and on only once). When it started I didn't know what to do exactly, I kept it in neutral still but had the clutch lever depressed and I kept throttling gently.
So I came to my house and had to let the oncomming traffic pass before I turned into my yard. Started letting go of the clutch and it died again. I was pretty nervous at that point so I might have simply stalled it that time, it started right away then.

I parked it in my yard, let it idle for a minute, turned it off. Ignition on, pump buzzes, starts like a champ. Turned it off, back on, pump buzzes, starts right away. Tried it with killswitch, everything fine. So I spent the next 5 minutes turning it off and on, no problems. Revving it gently, all good. Revving it briefly up to ca. 3k rpm, everything fine. 4-5 rpm, all fine. Neutral, 1st gear, side stand up, side stand down. All fine. Tried it again after half an hour, all good.

I've emailed my dealer and am waiting for the to reply tomorrow, but I still want some other input. My dealer is ca. 100 miles away, so I am reluctant on riding there in this state and if it's an easy fix, I'd like to not have to have the bike towed there.

From what I've read online, there's two options based on symptoms described above:
1) fuel pump relay
2) fuel pump

Don't think it's the side stand relay, cause that should not cause issues when the bike is in neutral or in gear with clutch depressed.
Putting side stand up and down makes the relay tick like clockwork.

1) fuel dump relay - I've read about people replacing them and having mixed results. I've been recommended to clean them as RE apparently uses too much dielectric grease on them. Any more info on any of this?

2) fuel pump itself - would it cause issues that appear and go away? This intermittent nature of the problem would have me looking for issues in contacts, but I have little experience with this so I might be conpletely wrong.


Anyway, this is the whole story, might be a bit long but I wanted to cover as much details as possible so someone might pick up on what's happening. Thanks!
 

Robc76

Well travelled
Location
Uk
Similar thing happened to me recently on the Himalayan and GS. Himalayan is a sticky clutch and neutral switches even though the bike already thinks it is in neutral. Clutch in and a wiggle of the gear lever sorts it. I will squirt some brake cleaner on them soon. With the GS it stopped dead mid ride. It turned out to be a crusty connector between the fuel pump and main loom. Squirted in some brake cleaner and all is well again.

RobC
 

filip989

Finally made it
Location
Croatia
Similar thing happened to me recently on the Himalayan and GS. Himalayan is a sticky clutch and neutral switches even though the bike already thinks it is in neutral. Clutch in and a wiggle of the gear lever sorts it. I will squirt some brake cleaner on them soon. With the GS it stopped dead mid ride. It turned out to be a crusty connector between the fuel pump and main loom. Squirted in some brake cleaner and all is well again.

RobC
Hmmm, but I don't understand how some sticky switches would make the pump not prime? I mean, the pump primes whenever it gets contact (key or killswitch) so clutch, stand etc. should bot have any impact at all, no?
 

madbiker

Well travelled
Location
United Kingdom
The problem with the fuel pump not priming lies with the relay.

I had the same fuel pump not priming issue and it went away after I changed the relay.

I own a BS4 model which only has 2 relays under the seat but if you own a BS6 model then watch this video.

 
Last edited:

filip989

Finally made it
Location
Croatia
The problem with the fuel pump not priming lies with the relay.

I had the same fuel pump not priming issue and it went away after I changed the relay.

I own a BS4 model which only has 2 relays under the seat but if you own a BS6 model then watch this video.

Relay is the #1 answer I'm finding online, but also some mixed results from owners. I will definitely try it.
 

petespace1

Well travelled
Location
NSW Aus
I had the same problem and realised the fuel pump wasn’t making the whirring (priming) sound. It started and so I rode away. Once after a stop it started then stalled. Then started again. Came back saw some relay posts. Realised the relays had popped out a bit so pushed them back and switched on the bike, and the priming sound was back (mine only has two on the top). No trouble so far. Bought two Narva branded European made ones and they are in my bag in the bike as spares. Have done many kms on the originals since and no trouble so far.
I occasionally check that they haven’t popped up again and push them anyway for luck😀. So far it’s been ok.

Having said that your problem may be unrelated.
 

filip989

Finally made it
Location
Croatia
I had the same problem and realised the fuel pump wasn’t making the whirring (priming) sound. It started and so I rode away. Once after a stop it started then stalled. Then started again. Came back saw some relay posts. Realised the relays had popped out a bit so pushed them back and switched on the bike, and the priming sound was back (mine only has two on the top). No trouble so far. Bought two Narva branded European made ones and they are in my bag in the bike as spares. Have done many kms on the originals since and no trouble so far.
I occasionally check that they haven’t popped up again and push them anyway for luck😀. So far it’s been ok.

Having said that your problem may be unrelated.
I definitely need to check the relay, as it should be located on the right hand side instead of the seat. I was removing the battery for winter and I do not recall having similar issues prior to that. So I might have popped it out gently. Since I haven't had a permanent problem yet, I hope it's something benign as that.

Would you happen to have the Narva specs of the relays you've bought?
 

petespace1

Well travelled
Location
NSW Aus
Last edited:

filip989

Finally made it
Location
Croatia
Just heard back from the dealer, they've sent me a new relay. Apparently, there's been a recall and the original 5-pin relays are being replaced by 4-pin relays during regular maintenance or on problems. Don't quite understand why this wouldn't be replaced immediately, it's not an expensive replacement, so waiting for service or provlems to occur just risks unnecessary embaressment but ok... this is just info from my dealer, not RE.

Will post back in a few weeks to report on how it's holding up.
 

Ajr650

Finally made it
Location
N. Ireland
My 22 model has had similar issues to the Op. Last evening it cut out while riding (3rd time!) and wouldn't start again. Luckily close to a mates house, so pushed it there. Bike has been collected and taken to dealer this morning. Hopefully a simple and quick fix 🤞.
 

filip989

Finally made it
Location
Croatia
My 22 model has had similar issues to the Op. Last evening it cut out while riding (3rd time!) and wouldn't start again. Luckily close to a mates house, so pushed it there. Bike has been collected and taken to dealer this morning. Hopefully a simple and quick fix 🤞.
Check my previous reply, my delaer told me that there's been a recall on pump relays (5 pin replaced with a 4 pin) which they've sent me through mail, I replaced it and so far for 60ish miles, no problem. Don't know if it's possible, but bike seems to be idling a bit higher than before (around 1600 then reduces to about 1200-1300 when up to temp)
They've also sent me an ignition relay to replace, as they've said it can cause issues too, but don't kbow if this one was recalled or if it's just their experience up to this point - again 4 pin instead of 5 pin)
 

puttbutt

Well travelled
Location
NY
last year my fuel pump went. I was riding to work when the bike began hesitating no matter how much throttle I gave her . made a u turn to head back home, and she completely died. the bike cranked, but wouldn't turn over. had it picked up by the dealer where I purchased her from. the fuel pump was the culprit. it was replaced under warranty.
 

Robc76

Well travelled
Location
Uk
This issue hit me this afternoon. Just set off for a couple of hours of Salisbury Plain exploration. Half way around a big roundabout the bike stopped. Once I got it to a safe place I found the fuel pump was not priming. I swapped out the relay for one of the others and it primed ok but the bike would not fire. I pulled off the fuel line and it dribbled some fuel, reconnected it and the bike fired. Must've been an air lock. So the bike was running so I headed home. Fortunately it was only 5 miles as the broken relay was now swapped out for a good one meaning the ECU wasn't happy. The bike ran fine but the check engine light was on all the way home and I still don't know what stopped working. A phone call tomorrow will see a warranty claim submitted. Bike has done 1,330 miles.

RobC
 

filip989

Finally made it
Location
Croatia
This issue hit me this afternoon. Just set off for a couple of hours of Salisbury Plain exploration. Half way around a big roundabout the bike stopped. Once I got it to a safe place I found the fuel pump was not priming. I swapped out the relay for one of the others and it primed ok but the bike would not fire. I pulled off the fuel line and it dribbled some fuel, reconnected it and the bike fired. Must've been an air lock. So the bike was running so I headed home. Fortunately it was only 5 miles as the broken relay was now swapped out for a good one meaning the ECU wasn't happy. The bike ran fine but the check engine light was on all the way home and I still don't know what stopped working. A phone call tomorrow will see a warranty claim submitted. Bike has done 1,330 miles.

RobC
Which one did you swap?
 

Attachments

Robc76

Well travelled
Location
Uk
I didn't keep track of which of those four swapped around. After a few permeatations I found the fuel pump relay is behind the right hand frame panel. As they're all idendical I swapped each out until rediscovered the failed one. Once I get a new relay I expect the check engine light will extinguish. Even if I get a new one one warranty I will buy a full set of 5 and replace them all and keep the originals in my stash of "get me home" parts.

RobC
 

filip989

Finally made it
Location
Croatia
I didn't keep track of which of those four swapped around. After a few permeatations I found the fuel pump relay is behind the right hand frame panel. As they're all idendical I swapped each out until rediscovered the failed one. Once I get a new relay I expect the check engine light will extinguish. Even if I get a new one one warranty I will buy a full set of 5 and replace them all and keep the originals in my stash of "get me home" parts.

RobC
I was asking because the one marked with yellow should be the ignition relay, according to my dealer. As I'ce said, they've sent me two relay to swap - fuel and ignition as both can cause issues (though I didn't quite understand if the ignition relay was recalled by RE, or was that just a precaution by my dealer). Anyway, replacing those two seems to have done the trick.
 

Robc76

Well travelled
Location
Uk
Thanks for the info. Apart from the check engine light nothing else seems to be wrong. The ride home was uneventful and no other warning lights were visible. A new relay should return full functionality.

RobC
 

Ajr650

Finally made it
Location
N. Ireland
My 22 model has had similar issues to the Op. Last evening it cut out while riding (3rd time!) and wouldn't start again. Luckily close to a mates house, so pushed it there. Bike has been collected and taken to dealer this morning. Hopefully a simple and quick fix 🤞.
So got my bike back from dealer after breakdown. They told me the fuel pump relay was the issue so replaced it with a new one. So 🤞thats the issue sorted.
 

Robc76

Well travelled
Location
Uk
To add my 2p worth; On Sunday evening I left my bike broken. The dealer wanted the bike delivered before they would submit a warranty claim. I refitted the broken relay and the fuel pump would not prime. To be expected. Long story short, I wiggled the cluster of relays under the seat and the fuel pump primed. I made sure all were fully seated and tried again. No priming. I flipped the kill switch a few times then the relay for that started clicking and the fuel pump primed again. So, it seems like a wiring loom issue in my case. Bike is now with dealer along with a nice long email and a video of the intermittent nature if the issue.

Regards

RobC
 

Robc76

Well travelled
Location
Uk
I got the bike back last week but I've been ill so I've not checked the work done. The delivery driver told me the workshop replaced a relay. Only today have I had a chance to check which. Filip posted a photo of the relay cluster a few posts up. It is the one with the blue dot. When fiddling I noticed that one would click when the kill switch was flipped off & on but only sometimes. When it didn't the fuel pump did not prime. The fuel pump relay, which I believe to be the one behind the right side panel, was not replaced. Anyway, time will tell if this has fixed the issue. The new relay is made by Hella so I'll purchase a couple to keep on the bike as spares.

RobC
 
Top Bottom