Question about Honda XR 400R Motorcycles

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I have a Honda XR400 dirt bike and am having trouble starting it, its got compression, spark, have fully stripped an cleaned carbareter, has fuel have tryed crash starting it an it does want to fire any ideas?????

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I have a 2003 XR 400 that I bought in 2005 nearly new (seller was more of an MX guy than trail guy). Thing was HARD to start no matter the conditions; hot day or cold day, sea level or 7000', dry or wet. Once I tired myself out completely and got it running, it would restart ok, but still always a challenge. After months of gritting it out, I followed the advice of everyone online. I bought a pumper carb. Don't even screw around with getting just the right jets, or all the other stuff you've already done. You bolt on the carburetor that the bike should have shipped with and you'll be one or two kicks from a nice run/idle/ride. I ride literally from sea level to 5000' with zero issues. I ride at 7000' no issues. Seriously, It was the best ~$350 I ever spent.

Posted on Dec 11, 2010


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My 1988 Honda cbr 1000f keeps backfireing every time i try to start it and wont start

how old is the fuel in the tank ? fuel goes off after 5months !! or it dould be contaminated with water or dirt etc , recomend cleaning the tank and removing the carbs and stripping and cleaning the jets etc !!
has the bike been unused for a long time ?
check that all spark plugs are sparking and check the compressions of each piston ! 100 psi or more is correct for each one , if less then the rings or the valves need investigating !
if you have any more information it will help me !
thanks Paul ...

Apr 15, 2015 | 1988 Honda CBR 1000 F

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My CR2004R dirt bike was running but now I cant get it started back it has a blue spark out of the sparkplug and good compression what could it be.

First thing to check is spark if O.K try fuel drain tank clean out carb re-fill with fresh fuel try it again good luck

Oct 13, 2014 | 2004 Honda CR 125 R

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Can't start my yz250fp dirt bike

Have a trained tech service and properly jet the carb and set idle and idle mixture.
If you have spark, compression, and the valves are adjusted properly the only thing left is the carb. The FCR carb is as complex as the entire engine!

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1997 rm 125 won't start why should I do?

For your dirt bike to run you need 3 things:

1. Fuel (gas/air)
2. Compression
3. Spark

Start trouble shooting through these. Make sure your gas is turned on, and that it flows through the carb; if you tilt the bike does fuel run through the overflow tube in the carb? Make sure you have good spark; take out the spark plug from the cylinder, still connected to the ignition wire touch the threaded end to somewhere metal on the engine and turn the bike over. You should see a spark. Finally, do you have good compression, how hard is it to kick over etc.

These are the first things to trouble shoot, I would look on youtube if you don't know what you're doing, there are plenty of helpful videos there. You can also try putting a thimble full of fuel into the cylinder and then kick it over to help it start if it has been sitting a while.

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1 Answer

I hav a 1995 honda cr 125 it has spark and is getting fuel and wont start but back fires the odd kick, ive replaced ign control, cdi box, rotor and generator, coil and plug

check compression, the valves may need adjustment. also make sure that the carb is clean and that there are no air leaks or you will have trouble. From my experience, 80% of old bike troubles come from the carbs being dirty/clogged. Pull the carb off, disassemble any plastic/rubber parts and BOIL in lemon juice for 20 minutes then rinse and blow out the passages. Reinstall and give it a try. If the valves are out of whack then the piston wont compress the air/fuel mixture and the spark will not ignite the mixture or will ignite it erratically thus getting an occasional backfire. Check valve lash and retry.

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1986 Honda CR80 quit running

C A R B U R E T O R .. have a qualified professional take a look at it....

your bike only needs THREE things to run,,(assuming the insides are good),,
1. A timed spark
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Start with one... eliminate one at a time until you find out which one is NOT happening!! (This is how a professional would trouble shoot your bike)!

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1 Answer

I have a 97 CBR that wont start. It has spark, fuel, and compression and timing is right on, but cant get it to fire at all. The only thing I can find wrong is the valves are all either out or at the low...

Well the two primary things that need to be present is fuel and spark. If your POSITIVE that there is spark going across the gap of the plug. And you can smell the fuel STRONG when you are cranking the bike over. Well then you may want to see if a local dealer would test the ECU unit.
You didn't say much with what you have done towards diagnostics and I'm not sure when the last time the bike was run since this problem.
I do hope that you have already gone over the bike, checking for burnt, broken, or corroded wires, blown fuses, or so on. Today's gas does not have a long shelf life. You may have bad gas. To test that out just buy some starting fluid and see if it will start off that. Good luck.

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2 Answers

Motorcycles wont start

Your bike needs 4 things to run-Fuel, Spark, Air and Compression. One or some of these are missing.

1) Crank engine over several times to start. Remove spark plug. If plug is wet and smells like gas then it is getting fuel.

2) Check for spark
Put spark plug back into spark plug cap and lay spark end along side bolt or part of unpainted head making contact and crank over engine as if to start. If no spark then is electrical problem. Try changing spark plug. Check grounds. If not plug or grounds then purchase a shop manual from your local dealer and ohms test all electeical componet resistances as shop manual instructs. Be sure components do not meet specks before purchasing.

3) If has spark and plug was wet upon removal then gas has water or just old gas. If you drained the carb via bottom of carb screw into a clean clear container and see stuff at the bottom then carb is dirty with water and or dirt.

If your bike has been sitting along time condensation will build explaining water and or gas will loose its kick after sitting too long. If you think it has been sitting a long time it is best to dispose of old gas and refill with new. Water can also get into tank from gas can when fully tipped upright so dont dump every last drop into the tank...most ofter the last couple of cups are water.

If bike has been sitting for a few days and was running fine before that, turn off gas, drain carb via bottom of carb screw, close off screw and turn gas back on. This will refresh the gas in carb.

If none of these are the case and you have good fuel, good spark...check air filter for air flow. If all this is good then you need to do a compression check. A simple way to do it is to stick your finger in the spark plug hole and hold it in there with some force and have a friend try to start the bike. If it blows your finger out then it has compression. If it doesnt want to force your finger out then you have no compression and is a piston and ring problem. The only way to test compression for sure it to purchase a compression tester from auto parts store that has an adapter for your size plug hole and do a proper test. I hope this helps.

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1 Answer

My 2006 kx450f will not start.

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Let me know what happens.

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1 Answer

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Hi there and thank you for using FixYa!

Yes this is a common problem with bikes having dirty spark plugs and poor fuel quality. What you do is to remove the plugs, clean it well.. or better, replace it with a new one. Then if it still doesnt start, pull the choke knob for a while. start it.. if it still doesnt start. Open the carbs to check if there are any dirt blocking the jets. Blow the holes with compressed air. Assemble and replace it back. Start. if it still doesnt work, check for the cable, make sure it has current firing to the spark plug.

let me know if this helps..

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