Question about Harley Davidson XL 1200 S Sportster Sport Motorcycles

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Tripping circuit breaker

Bike cruising then power just died have restarted but inevitably fails at random just engine lights and all still ok

Posted by Anonymous on


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  • Harley Davidson Master
  • 43,100 Answers

Hi Anonymous, and the usual suspects are:
1. Battery terminals loose, corroded, or broken. Check negative cable at both ends.
2. Battery nearly discharged.
3. Faulty or corroded Maxi fuse, system relay, starter relay, circuit breakers and fuses.
4. Faulty ignition coil, ignition/electronic module, CKP, CMP, MAP and BAS sensor.
5. Pin or spade connectors corroeded, melted, broken or pushed back.
6. Intermittant short circuit due to damaged wire insulation.
7. Loose or dirty ignition/electronic module at crankcase.
8. Water or dirt in carburator or fuel system.
9. Faulty fuel pump, pick up tube, pressure regulator or fuel filter.
10. Fuel tank vent system plugged or carburator vent line closed off.
For a prime suspect please visit website below:
Harley Davidson Sportster error codes and how to access them
Good luck

Posted on May 05, 2015


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Posted on Jan 02, 2017


SOURCE: fuse blowing = total electrical failure

The resetable breaker could be of little amps which cannot take the load of the electricals of your bike, thus its overheating and trips off.
Surprising though it also drains the battery.
There could be some kind of a short in the wiring somewhere.
Why did they replace the main fuse in the first place? Was there any kind of problem to the electricals thn?

Posted on Jun 18, 2009

  • 1 Answer

SOURCE: sudden engine-computor shut-down bike dies,


Posted on Jan 28, 2010

  • 2 Answers

SOURCE: 2002 Harley Davidson Electra Glide FLHTPI loses all electrical.

Professeur D is another of the people who just can't say "I don't know" or just be quiet. His comments are worthless. You don't say what the bike model or year is, but I bet it's a newer bike. I have an '02 FLHTCU with the engine juiced up a little and the rear cylinder really runs hot. The circuit breaker is located right over the rear cylinder, and since I have an oil temp gage I can see that when the temp hits 230 the breaker is going to open and shut all electrical off. I've changed breakers many times and the problem is still there and the dealers don't know what to do. I've been told by another rider that I should replace the circuit breaker with a fuse which will not be affected by temp. I'm going to look into that!

Posted on Jun 02, 2010

  • 448 Answers

SOURCE: Where is main circuit breaker on 2000 Softail

It's under the seat.

Posted on Sep 02, 2012

  • 4536 Answers

SOURCE: 2002 yamaha 1700 warrior road bike. no lights on instrument cluster, no starting, good power supplyat battery. just stopped dead in traffic. has'nt run since.

u need a repair manual like clymer etc--engine work is in detail-us pros use it-------cud be a computer issue--also a batt can fail at any time--components with age can wear from resistence

Posted on Dec 02, 2012

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Four in-line 12v15amp breakers first one in line keeps clicking as if to shut down and all lights blink when it does this also no turn signals at all function otherwise bike runs fine

This sounds like it's your "accessories" circuit breaker. The only way to tell is to look at a schematic of your bike. I'm sorry but I do not have schematics for bikes later than 1999. You'll have to find out what devices are on this circuit and disconnect the power wire from each one. As you reconnect the devices one at the time, listen for the circuit breaker to trip. When it does trip, you've found the problem.

Good Luck

May 28, 2011 | 2008 Harley Davidson FXD Dyna Super Glide

1 Answer

Bike is running fine - then it is like a cut off switch hits and the bike looses all power. 2003 FLHTCI with a 106", ported, polished heads and throttle bodies, TTS ignition and dyno at 117 hp and 114 lb...

Have you added any additional accessories to the bike? If so, you could have raised the total current requirement of the bike with everything running. This could cause the main breaker to trip. Although I'm thoroughly familiar with your model of bike, Harley usually uses a breaker for the main circuit protection then going to fuses for individual circuit protection. If the main breaker is rated at 30 amps and you're drawing a constant 28, almost anything could change temporarily to cause you to exceed the 30 amp rating of the circuit breaker. A circuit breaker uses a bi-metal strip that heats up and breaks the circuit. It usually takes just a little while for the bi-metal strip to cool and then "reset" the circuit.

The next time it does this, notice if he headlight goes out. If it's the main breaker, the light will go out. If not, you're dealing with something that is smaller although just as aggreviating. You'll have to try to figure out what is still working when the bike quits. I think you have several fuses that are labeled what they control like the ignition, lights, and whatever else. Notice which circuits are still working to determine what circuit is not working. Being no fuses are blowing, it's not a short circuit, it's a momentary open circuit or an intentional electrical shutdown to protect something.

Good Luck

Aug 12, 2010 | Harley Davidson FLSTC - FLSTCI Heritage...

2 Answers

When the bike is hot and crusising along a street the electrics will die and the bike comes to a dead stop. No ignition, the spedometer sticks at 28mph. I let the bike sit for 5 minutes then it starts and...

So, you didn't hit the "kill swith". LOL Ok.

It sounds like something is tripping your main circuit breaker. A circuit breaker will act like that. When something shorts out, it will cause a high current draw which causes the element in the circuit breaker to heat up and trip. Once it trips, it takes a few minutes for it to cool but once it cools, it resets itself. I prefer this to a fuse which blows and then you've got to have a replacement. If you don't have a replacement, you're just stuck there until you find one.

Now, you may have a short which is not unusual on a dresser since there are so many wires running to the front end under the fairing. Look for a bare wire right where the wires go into the fairing from the frame. There is a lot of flexing motion at that point and a high probablility of a wire rubbed bare.

Have you added any extra accessories to the bike? If so, you may have overloaded the main circuit. Seems that bike has a 30 amp main breaker in it. If you added another set of highway lights or something like that, you may have exceeded the maximum current handling capability of the wiring harness and the breaker is tripping to protect the harness.

If you have a wiring diagram, check for devices that run off the main breaker only. The rest of the stuff should have it's own fuses and if you're not blowing any of those, it sounds like something on the main breaker alone.

Check the chrome cover that covers your igniton coil. I've seen them come loose, fall down onto the coil and short the igniton out as well. When the engine stops running. the thing will move and unshort the short.

Good Luck

Jul 24, 2010 | 2002 Harley Davidson FLHTCUI Electra Glide...

2 Answers

Driving and it tototally shuts down sometimes on the highway going 75 sometimes in the city going 25.Keep trying to restart it and it catches.Weather we go 1000 miles or 10 miles it decides when it wants...

Notice if the dash lights and other small lights go off when it does this. It sounds like you're tripping a breaker, possibly the main breaker. If you have a short somewhere and the main breaker trips, it will kill all power to the bike. After a few minutes, the breaker will reset and the bike will restart until the short shows up again. Look to see what size the breaker is. I have seen them go back but not very often. You might want to replace it with a new one. Be very careful about going up on the size of the breaker. It's there to protect your wiring harness. If you go with a bigger breaker, you could burn up your wiring harness or your bike.

May 24, 2010 | 2001 Harley Davidson FLHTCUI Electra Glide...

1 Answer

Harley won't start ... starter not working custom softail ... 80 ci v twin engine... nothing happens when I push the starter button.... battery is fine and all lights work... clicking sound under seat...

That clicking sound you are hearing may be a circuit breaker tripping indicating a short circuit somewhere. I think the starter circuit is powered by the ignition circuit. If you have a short circuit in your ignition system the breaker will trip killing power to your ignition, thus the engine dying, and preventing power for the starter circuit preventing the bike from being restarted.

On your bike, I believe there is a chrome coil cover over the coil on the left side of the bike. Check and see if this cover has come loose. I've seen them come loose and fall down on the coil connector on top of the coil shorting it out. If that ain't it, just keep looking, there's a short somewhere. Good Luck

Mar 30, 2010 | 2005 Harley Davidson FLSTF - FLSTFI Fat...

2 Answers

The Lights circuit breaker keeps trips without load

try a new breaker, they do wear out over time

Feb 08, 2010 | Electrical Supplies

1 Answer

Checked tail light housing , those are ok , checked brake light switch , its good , all other lights work as they should , used circuit breaker to check for short and breaks immediately , I do know cruise...

Depending on the year of the vehicle, it may be one in which the taillights are connected via a printed circuit board. This is one of the worst designs in automotive history, as the board inevitably gets wet and the contacts corrode. Sometimes, smacking the tail light assembly will make it come on again for a while. If this is the issue, replacement of the circuit board is called for. The board clips to the back of the light housing. Prior to replacement, check for power at the wiring harness that connects to the tail light assemblies, and re-verify that both bulbs are correct and good, even if they don't look burnt. If there is power at the harness when the brakes are pressed, and the bulbs both light when 12v is applied directly to them, it is almost certainly the circuit boards. Note that on some vehicles, if one bulb fails, both will stop lighting. The cruise probably has nothing to do with it. If the vehicle does not have circuit board at the taillights, it may be one or more corroded or worn out bulb sockets. Sometimes, the center bulb contact can be cleaned and pried up with a screwdriver to make contact again, but this is a temporary fix.

Nov 25, 2009 | Saturn LS Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

Hitachi RAS09UH randomly pops 15A circuit breaker

Two things that you could check: 1) If you have access to an ampmeter, determine if the unit is drawing over over 14 or 15 amps, 2) replace the suspect circuit breaker in case it is beginning to go bad. Breakers only trip for overcurrent conditions or failure of the breaker itself. If it is pulling close to 15 amps, then it could heat up over time and trip.

Jul 09, 2009 | Hitachi RAS-09UH Air Conditioner

1 Answer

Two 15 amp arc fault breakers installed on two adjacent circuits. One works fine - does not trip. The afi breaker beside it trips as soon as it is flipped on. We tried switching circuits, but both circuits...

It's possible that the first breaker that you said does not trip - it could be that breaker is failing to trip on a bad circuit. That is, it could be you have a bad circuit but that first breaker is not detecting it and pretends everything is OK. If your new breaker trips on the first breaker's circuit, the curcuit it probably bad and the breaker in not working properly. The most common problem for failed circuits is a stray ground wire in a box somewhere in the curcuit resting against a hot or neutral wire. You'll have to take apart every connection on that curcuit to find it. Not fun.

Jun 14, 2009 | Siemens 20Amp 1-pole arc-fault circuit...

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