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Bear Tracker 250 starter problem

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I have a 2002 Yamaha Bear Tracker 250, and the starter motor doesn't work. It never had any trouble starting last Fall, but unfortunately the machine had to spend the Winter outside (removed the battery though & left it on a battery tender). I put the battery back in a few days ago, but there's no response from the starter. The engine will start fine with the pull rope. I just replaced the starter relay (complete with fresh fuses), and the battery has a full charge, but the sucker still won't start--it doesn't even click. The green neutral light is lit, and the headlight comes on (but doesn't go dim when the starter button is pressed, like a bad starter or solenoid might cause). The engine kill/run switch works fine (after I manually start the engine).

I've re-seated all the wiring connectors I can find, that appear to be associated with ignition. Not really sure where to go from here, it's driving me crazy. It acts like a bad switch (starter button), but I pulled the switch and it looked ok (contacts were not burned, dirty or corroded). I've pulled off the rear rack and fenders, so everything is exposed now.

Also, there's a good size wiring harness that leads into the case behind the pull starter (it's attached to two multi-pin connectors at the other end, under the seat)--I assume that's where the starter and solenoid are? If so, do I remove the pull starter to get at the starter motor?

One other thing--and I don't know if it's relevant--when I very first tried to pull start the machine, there was no resistance on the rope whatsoever (just rewind spring resistance from the rope pulley), I pulled a few more times, again without resistance. So I put the machine in gear, rocked it back and forth a few times and I was then able to pull start it. But again, the thing sat out all winter, so who knows...

Can anyone offer any insight...please?

Edited by bnjoplyr

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Did you try bypassing the solenoid? put 12v from the battery directly to the starter. If it wont try to engage its probably a bad starter. If nothing do a amp test on the battery and check any components in between the battery and the starter (including the start button! Might be gummed up with oxide)

Sent from my SGH-T989 using Xparent BlueTapatalk 2

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With the break applied and ignition ON and the neutral light ON I would think since you're not hearing a click upon pressing the starter button that either the starter switch is not making a connection or the solenoid is bad. However you can jump or bypass the solenoid as marioweldinginc suggested but this can be done on the two large post on the solenoid itself. Simply use an old screwdriver to make a connection between these two large post Caution: with this method because jumping across the these two post can cause your screwdriver to get hot very quickly! Once the jump is made the starter if good should attempt to turn the engine over if not your started is probably bad. The Solenoid can be found by tracing the large wire connected to the starter directly to the solenoid. Hope This Helps!

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Thanks Mario and Whip. I had to put the starter problem on hold, since the wife decided a bathroom remodel was waaaaay more important. But I will post what i find, when I get back to it.

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Finally got back to messing with the starter issue today. I jumped the posts on the solenoid, and the starter cranked. Traced the wires from the start button all the way back to the solenoid, and there's continuity. There's also continuity at the starter button, so that appears to be good. I get no power to the starter from the solenoid, when pressing the start button.

I bought the solenoid brand-new on amazon.com (aftermarket part, but it looks exactly like the factory part I pulled off). Fuses on either side of the solenoid are good. There are no clicks, or noises whatsoever when pressing the starter button. Neutral light is on (verified it really was in neutral), brakes applied, but the starter still won't crank. I can pull start the machine with the ripcord just fine.

The wire from the starter button goes to a connector on the solenoid with 2 other wires on it. One of the wires (dark blue with white tracer) goes to what appears to be a small relay, near the solenoid. The remaining wire (red 16 gauge) goes to the rectifier/regulator.

The only thing I can think of at this point is maybe (but not likely) I got a bad solenoid, or the rectifier/regulator, or the "other" relay is defective.

Still stumped

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