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Has anyone had a fuel strip work intermittently or do they either work or fail? On my last fill-up, the gauge showed "full" for quite a long time (100 miles?) and then stated to show other levels. I have put 185 miles on since the fill-up and the computer is showing I have approx. 200 miles remaining. I have never trusted the fuel gauge and have even less trust at the moment.

This may be a dumb question; but, does the low fuel indicator get its information from the fuel strip or is there another sensor it uses? I am wondering if it will still work without finding out the hard way!

Thanks,
 

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I have same observation. Full tank (really full) and I see on computer only 220 miles remaining which of course is not correct. Then for let say 60-70 miles or some more the strip stays at most upper position and remaining mileage remain the same. Strange. After that the strip suddenly goes down to the correct position around 1/2 to 3/4 . At that position the remaining mileage is correct.

Very strange behaviour really. I will get a habbit , but this is not convenient.
 

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kellenbenz said:
I am a little confused. On the parts fiche for a 2010 and newer RT it shows a float type level sensor instead of a strip sensor.

http://www.ascycles.com/Illustrated...Name=Fuel_pump___float_sensor&bindCat=16_0823


Did the change to a float in 2010 after all the problems with the strip sensors?

Thanks in advance,

Ron
They now use a float, changed sometime in 2011 production, not sure of the exact cutoff.

It's been asked about a retrofit to early models but it doesn't look like that will happen.
 

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The change back to the float was as of August, 2010 which coincides with the change over to production of the 2011 models.

There have been numerous threads here and on other boards (F800) about the fuel gauges not illustrating the amount of fuel remaining on a constant, progressive basis. This is not at all surprising if you look at the convoluted shape of the gas tanks involved.

If the tanks were a consistent shape such as a cylinder, it would not be difficult for it to show a steady decrease as fuel is consumed. The sender, however, actually indicates where the surface of the fuel is in the tank, not the remaining volume. In a tank with a complex shape, the remaining volume does not relate directly to the surface height of the fuel.

Therefore, unless the signal from the sender is calculated using a complex algorithm that takes into account the convoluted shape of the tank, the gauge will not precisely reflect the amount of fuel remaining based on its surface level. There are are only two fixes for this; to simplify the shape of the tank or to process the signal from the sender through a computer that can make calculations based on actual volume, not fuel surface level.

As for the gauge not reacting until a significant amount of fuel has been consumed, this is because there is a significant amount of fuel above the upper reach of the sender. Practically, it is not possible to have it measure up into the filler neck due to the complex tank shape, so the upper portion must be consumed before the sender can detect a decrease in fuel.

Accept the gauge for what it is; a reasonably accurate approximation of the amount of fuel remaining. It beats the good old days of having the bike stutter in traffic as you frantically reach down to switch the petcock to reserve, without getting run over. And with no gauge at all!
 

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Sotys said:
I have same observation. Full tank (really full) and I see on computer only 220 miles remaining which of course is not correct. Then for let say 60-70 miles or some more the strip stays at most upper position and remaining mileage remain the same. Strange. After that the strip suddenly goes down to the correct position around 1/2 to 3/4 . At that position the remaining mileage is correct.

Very strange behaviour really. I will get a habbit , but this is not convenient.
Mine does the same thing - sometimes. And sometimes not. I'm out of warranty so I'm going to wait until it totally fails before I replace the fuel strip. I've learned to anticipate that the first 100 miles will show a full tank and then it will drop rapidly to about 2/3, then behave normally from there.

I think I recall that it started when I let the bike sit for several days in very hot weather with an empty tank. Maybe partially dried out the strip or something, but if I recall correctly that's how you're supposed to try to resurrect a dead strip - let it dry completely and then reinstall.

And I believe that the low fuel warning light is directly tied into the "miles remaining" calculation. Mine always seems to come on at 49 miles remaining, which has an only tenuous connection with the actual amount of fuel in the tank. I've had zero miles remaining with about a half gallon in, and zero miles remaining with ... zero gallons in the tank (that was embarrasing). So definitely ride by the odometer, not by the "miles remaining" or the warning light. Consensus wisdom is to refill by about 250 miles on the tank.

If you want everything to work perfectly all the time you need to get something boring (like a Leadwing?)

JayJay
 

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The explanation that Bikebits gave seems to me logical.

Mine warning lamp appears when there is remaining about 1 gal, the remaining miles are relevant as well. I presume that from 2/3 downward the readings are correct, which finallyy is acceptable.

Do you have an idea whether on center stand the tank take some more fuel ?
 

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I have the same problem as of today, filled up with Fuel but still its registering empty and giving the warning triangle.

So, 2 questions;

How long is the warranty on the RT

and

Does anyone have a link to instructions on how to change the strip in the tank?

Cheers

Mark
 

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Mark,

I think the new strip has to be calibrated by the dealer during the install...that makes it not commonly a project for the do it yourself guys.

The GS-911 guys mentioned a possibility of adding the calibration to their tool, but I have not seen an update available as of now.

Here in the USA the warranty is 36 months or 36,000 miles.....not sure about across the pond.

Ron
 

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Fuel Strip Rant: I am totally frustrated with BMW. This will be my third fuel strip replacement within the past year. The dealership (Touring Sport BMW) has replaced the strip without any issues, but my problem is taking a day off from work and traveling 230 miles round trip to the dealer. Unfortunately August, Georgia does not have a dealership and the closest dealers are Atlanta GA, Greenville SC, or Charlotte NC. In the past, my other BMWs have been somewhat reliable, but this fuel strip is taking the prize for the most unreliable item and has now finished my relationship with BMW. Since 1966 I have ridden BMWs. I have owned an R27, R69S, R60/5, R90S, R100T, R850R, R1100RT, K1200RS, 2 LTs and now my R1200RT. This RT has been the most problematic of all the models.

BMW must be aware of this problem, but has chosen to ignore it and simply replace the fuel strip until the bike is out of warranty. This brings me to the point of my rant. The last time I had my fuel strip replaced I asked if the new strip was covered by a separate warranty period. The dealer replied NO and if the strip fails after my original 36/36 warranty expires, I will be responsible for replacing the strip at my own cost. The dealer further stated that once I replace the strip (at my cost) it would have the common one year warranty. Yep, I asked twice to make sure I understood the answer. So my warranty expires the last day of April 2012 and if the new strip (installed February 2012) fails after that date it will not be covered under any type of warranty and I would be responsible for a replacement cost of the strip if it fails after April 2012. Yes, that is correct.


How lucky can I be, the fuel strip failed March 21, 2012 and my warranty is good through April 2012. I am replacing my fuel strip for the fourth time next week and my plan is to use the remainder of the day to visit the local Harley Davidson Dealer and Honda Dealer. I have enjoyed my time ridding BMWs and the pleasure of owning one, but I refuse to support an organization that has such little respect for its customers.
 

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tbl160 said:
Fuel Strip Rant: I am totally frustrated with BMW. This will be my third fuel strip replacement within the past year. The dealership (Touring Sport BMW) has replaced the strip without any issues, but my problem is taking a day off from work and traveling 230 miles round trip to the dealer. Unfortunately August, Georgia does not have a dealership and the closest dealers are Atlanta GA, Greenville SC, or Charlotte NC. In the past, my other BMWs have been somewhat reliable, but this fuel strip is taking the prize for the most unreliable item and has now finished my relationship with BMW. Since 1966 I have ridden BMWs. I have owned an R27, R69S, R60/5, R90S, R100T, R850R, R1100RT, K1200RS, 2 LTs and now my R1200RT. This RT has been the most problematic of all the models.

BMW must be aware of this problem, but has chosen to ignore it and simply replace the fuel strip until the bike is out of warranty. This brings me to the point of my rant. The last time I had my fuel strip replaced I asked if the new strip was covered by a separate warranty period. The dealer replied NO and if the strip fails after my original 36/36 warranty expires, I will be responsible for replacing the strip at my own cost. The dealer further stated that once I replace the strip (at my cost) it would have the common one year warranty. Yep, I asked twice to make sure I understood the answer. So my warranty expires the last day of April 2012 and if the new strip (installed February 2012) fails after that date it will not be covered under any type of warranty and I would be responsible for a replacement cost of the strip if it fails after April 2012. Yes, that is correct.


How lucky can I be, the fuel strip failed March 21, 2012 and my warranty is good through April 2012. I am replacing my fuel strip for the fourth time next week and my plan is to use the remainder of the day to visit the local Harley Davidson Dealer and Honda Dealer. I have enjoyed my time ridding BMWs and the pleasure of owning one, but I refuse to support an organization that has such little respect for its customers.
I'm not sure that the info your dealer gave you about the fuel strip not being covered outside the 3/36 warranty is correct. It has always been my understanding that parts replaced during the warranty period on the bike have the standard BMW parts warranty along with them.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
It is my understanding that even if the fuel strip fails outside of the warranty of the bike it is still covered under warranty for that part. I thought I heard two years but someone here said one year. In any case this fuel strip problem is unacceptable. If BMW will not provide the upgrade to the float sensor then they should cover the fuel strip replacement for as long as the original owner has the bike. After all, this is a well known problem.

Sorry guys. I didn't mean to start any rantings. I just wanted to know if the fuel strips can fail intermittently and if the low fuel indicator works with a failed fuel strip.

Regards,
 

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My story. Strip replaced inside Warranty. If it dies a day after warranty expires too bad, it is on me even if it is a week old. Then, outside original bike warranty, get another trip on my nickle and it has a two year warranty because they installed it. Hope it fails again within the two years. Then I get another for free. Odds are it will fail quickly. Another case of BMW ignoring a problem as it will go away after a few years. A little software work on their part and the new floats could be retrofitted to the bikes with strips. I too asked specifically for this information.
 
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