Fuel Gauge Anomaly - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 7 Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 7:43 am Thread Starter
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Fuel Gauge Anomaly

I did a search and read over 250 postings and did not see anything that I am experiencing.
After my last fill up on Monday afternoon, my gauge registered full as it should. I noticed on Wednesday morning that it still was reading full when I put approximately 40 miles on the bike (should have been down to the first white mark). Wednesday afternoon the gauge read 3/4 full, again as it should. This morning, the gauge was on full. When I shut off the bike, the gauge did slowly move to the empty mark.
So, if it was a bent sending tube or a clogged canister, I would think that the tube should be stuck in one place, not go from 3/4 to full (on a tank that is not full). When I got to work this morning, I removed the gas cap and did not hear any swishing sound so I do not think that it is a clogged canister. The computer is registering miles to go normally.
During my service station days years ago, when a cars gauge read full, it usually meant a bad sending unit. Any thoughts?

Mike Trevelino
Williamsburg, VA
2008 RT
2000 LT - Totaled at 99,960 miles


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post #2 of 7 Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 7:59 am
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Re: Fuel Gauge Anomaly

Hi, Mike - could be one or the other problems you mentioned. Either way, you'll prolly need to remove the sending unit/tube to check. You might also, before you get too involved, check the connector fitting on top of the tank to make sure it's tight. I'll wait for the wrenching gurus to chime in as to pinpointing the problem (my wag is a slightly crushed tube that slows the sensor unit's travel?!?).
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post #3 of 7 Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 2:09 pm
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Re: Fuel Gauge Anomaly

Just "fixed" my sending unit; it was reading only 3/4" full, even after a full fill.

This can be done without removing the tank (I would wait until the fuel level is low, however).

Pulled the RHS plastic, removed the sending unit plug, removed the six (? from memory) bolts holding the tube in the tank (be sure to mark the orientation before removing it). The sending unit wasn't traveling from top to bottom "smoothly" so I applied a liberal amount of "up and down" movement to get the sending unit to slide smoothly (insert your own joke here).

When replaced, it actually read full when the tank was filled. Again, I said "fixed" as I'm not sure what was wrong with it - not sure if the float was just "stuck" or the resistor element was gunky.

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Modesto, CA
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post #4 of 7 Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 4:37 pm
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Re: Fuel Gauge Anomaly

My second LT, a 2005 model, has had a display problem ever since I have owned it. But my problem is just the opposite of yours. My gauge will display full after filling up but quickly go down. I will hardly get out of the gas station, only a couple miles, and it will be down to the first hash mark. Within about a dozen miles it will be at the 3/4 mark. Once it gets to the 1/2 mark it is accurate.

I have taken the unit out and visually examined it. Nothing appears amiss.

Not trying to hijack your thread. Just looking for something to look for as well.

Steve
2005 K1200LT
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post #5 of 7 Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 8:43 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Fuel Gauge Anomaly

Leaving work today, the gauge slowly went to full. About ten minutes later when I got on the entrance ramp to the HOV lanes, the gauge started going down to its normal position. I will see what tomorrow brings.
Thanks everyone!

Mike Trevelino
Williamsburg, VA
2008 RT
2000 LT - Totaled at 99,960 miles


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post #6 of 7 Old Sep 23rd, 2010, 11:14 pm
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Re: Fuel Gauge Anomaly

I'll chime in here. On mine when the tank is completely full, everything works fine. But just as soon as it heads towards 3/4, and you shut the bike off. When I restart about 90% of the time it will stick at the bottom. So, I've just been flicking the plastic in front of the gauge and it takes right off. So in my case I believe its the gauge, but its not bad enough for me to worry about.

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post #7 of 7 Old Sep 24th, 2010, 9:11 am
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Re: Fuel Gauge Anomaly

Quote:
Originally Posted by Razmataz
I'll chime in here. On mine when the tank is completely full, everything works fine. But just as soon as it heads towards 3/4, and you shut the bike off. When I restart about 90% of the time it will stick at the bottom. So, I've just been flicking the plastic in front of the gauge and it takes right off. So in my case I believe its the gauge, but its not bad enough for me to worry about.


Good luck with this thread, I brought up this issue two years ago and got nothing but "who cares, as long as you know how much gas you probably have" responses.

If it's not the sending unit, there is a setting the dealership can change to re-set what "empty" is for the system, but in order to do that you have to have the tank, well, empty. (there are details for it in the service manual, and you need the dealer computer to do it, can't just hit buttons on the bike to do it so I never did it myself--mine never shows more than 3/4 of a tank even if it's spilling over the top). It's likely not a warranty issue, so you have to decide if it's irritating enough to pay for or not.

Me, it always pisses me off that I have a motorcycle that was $23,000+ new and I have to guess how much gas I probably have once it hits the lower section of the fuel gauge--and then end up filling up to discover I had 1.8 gallons still in the beast (although the couple times I've run out of gas are more irritating).

Good luck with your fix.

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