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XJ550 Won't Start

Discussion in 'XJ DIY How-To Instructions' started by TG2, Jan 21, 2019.

  1. TG2

    TG2 New Member

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    Just recently purchased a 81' Xj550 and it won't start. Got the starter rebuilt which was bad, as well as a new starter relay. The neutral light comes on with the battery connected, and still wont start with both safety relays disconnected. The bike has new fuses and they're all good, I'm at a loss and don't know where to go from here. When I cross the relay terminals, I get a spark and the starter tries to kick over but I can't seem to figure out where the problem is from the START button on the handlebars. Should I try installing an aftermarket toggle switch straight to the relay or what? Any Suggestions ?
     

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  2. TG2

    TG2 New Member

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    When I press the start button, the oil light comes on but only when I press the button, as soon as I release the start button it goes away. Not sure if that helps
     
  3. chacal

    chacal Moderator Moderator Supporting Vendor Premium Member

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    Disconnecting the safety relays isn't a good idea, and won't help a bike start..........for that (and for troubleshooting purposes only!) you want to by-pass the relays:

    https://www.xjbikes.com/forums/threads/the-ultimate-relay-switch-sensor-and-diodes-guide.27543/

    BTW, the neutral warning light (green) should only come on when:

    a) the key switch is turned on
    b) the bike is in neutral

    If the green light is on without the key switch being in the run position, then there are other wiring issues that need to be addressed.
     
  4. TG2

    TG2 New Member

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    I meant to specify, the Neutral light comes on when the key is turned to the on position. The headlight does not come on at all either, I read somewhere that the headlight usually comes on when you turn the key to on.
     
  5. chacal

    chacal Moderator Moderator Supporting Vendor Premium Member

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    This is proper operation for the red oil level warning light circuit (unless, of course, if the oil level is really low, in which case the light should remain lit up!).


    This is proper operation for the green tranny-in-neutral light circuit (unless, of course, if the transmission is in any gear, in which case the light should go off and actually should never light up!).



    Not on your model:

    Headlight Latching Relays:

    hlr1) OEM headlight system HEADLIGHT RELAY. This relay prevents the headlight from coming on while the starter motor is being engaged, thus allowing maximum battery voltage to be used by the starter and the ignition system. However, it is dependent on voltage draw in order to energize and "latch" into the on position, and thus if the engine gets spinning fast enough during the starting process (whether the engine fires or not), enough voltage will be produced by the alternator (which increases its output with RPM's) to clamp this relay, and thus pass current to the headlamp. Also, once latched on, the headlight circuit remains on until the ignition switch is turned fully off.....thus, if you (for example) stall the bike, and hit the starter button, this relay will remain latched and the headlight WILL remain lit during the starting process. Only by turning the key to the off position can you de-energize this relay (and thus turn the headlight off).

    Identification: The Headlight Relay is a small square metal "cube" relay, and has a small yellow paint "dot" or yellow locking tab, and has the following 4 wires connected to it:

    - XJ550 all models and XJ650 all models except Turbo: a solid black wire, a solid white wire, a blue wire with a black tracer stripe, and a red wire with a yellow tracer stripe.

    - XJ750 Seca models: a solid black wire, a white wire with a blue tracer stripe, a blue wire with a black tracer stripe, and a red wire with a yellow tracer stripe.

    NOTE: original relays were always a square metal can style, although they may have been replaced by an automotive style plastic relay.
     
  6. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    the only relay you would unplug is the sidestand relay. plug the starter relay back in . when you turn on the key in neutral you should hear that relay click.
    is the run/kill switch in the center position?
    under the gas tank on the right(as you sit on the bike) side near the ignition coil is a black connector that connector goes to right control

    you will see a blue wire and a black wire coming from the control. the black wire has no mating wire to it in the main wiring harness connector..
    the blue wire comes from the solenoid to starter button
    the black wire comes from the starter button to the connector it is ground.
    the control makes ground through the handle bars. are your bars painted?

    start by disconnecting the black connector then with a multimeter probe to blue wire and black wire in the connector that goes to the controler . press starter button do you have continuity when you press the button?
    if yes
    connect the meter probe to negative on battery and the other probe to the blue wire at solenoid connector this is a volt test do you get voltage?
    also test blue wire for voltage at the connector that the controller plugs into . voltage?

    this connector should be working if the oil light comes on.the oil light connects to the starter button trough the diode block and is a test for the oil light bulb.

    if your bars are painted you need to add a ground wire to the black wire that runs from the comtrol to the connector.
    you can buy the pins for the connector and do a neat job or just cut that black wire solder a 6 inch piece of black wire to it and crimp a ring terminal to it large enough to go under the ignition coil mounting bolt that will serve as your ground.

    I find this connector a problem on the 550s poor connections, clean your connections with electronic spray cleaner and add some dielectric grease to prevent corrosion.
    plug it back in and see if it works.


    you could have a dirty contact on the starter button you can clean that with a eraser add a little dielectric grease to it .
     
  7. TG2

    TG2 New Member

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    Okay so for an update, I found online that I should have two power inputs going into the starter solenoid: the high voltage connection jumping directly to the battery and then the smaller red wire should also carry voltage when the key is turned on. I did not have power and found that the red wire runs to the start circuit relay which was located underneath the gas tank. Unfortunately, the relay had been unplugged by the PO so there is no longer a relay there. Is there a way to wire or create a jump between the inputs on that start circuit relay to see if the bike will turn over (looking for a quick fix to troubleshoot, this will not be a solution to the problem obviously and will get fixed properly later). Now that I have two sources of power running into my starter solenoid, I am hoping that the bike will turn over. Thanks for the help guys!
     
  8. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    yes the relay can be bypassed starter cut off relay.PNG connect the 2 red/white wires together
     
  9. Brandon Griffith

    Brandon Griffith New Member

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    Ok what about the other two wires after you connect the two red wires together?
     
  10. k-moe

    k-moe Pie, Bacon, Bourbon. Moderator Premium Member

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    They get left alone. The two R/W wires are controlled by the safety circuit relay. Once you bridge them the other two wires are out of the circuit entirely.

    Sb is the ground for the neutral safety switch.

    Y/B is the clutch switch.
     
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  11. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    you do nothing with them they control the relay to close so the 2 red wires make contact
     
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