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Motorcycle Repair/dragstar electrical problem


Hi Wayne, hope you can help me out ...I have a 1998 yamaha dragstar xvs650 . it was running perfectley . until 2 days ago , when one of the indicator bulbs went out . So i took off the lense cover to replace the bulb ,which was obviously dead , and noticed a little rain water inside the lense .The bulb holder was corroded and wet , so I cleaned it up ,dryed it and sprayed some wd40 on it , then installed a new bulb .I put the lense back on and tryed the indicator , which worked fine ... for a little while .Next day , I went out on the bike again and the bulb stayed lit whilst signalling, it didnt flash .So I parked the bike and went into work . when I left to go home , none of my indicators were working and neither was my horn or brake light ,I only had a short journey from work to my home , so I drove home , and as I was parking I put the bike into neutral and the neutral light didnt work either , but it came on when I put the bike into 1st ...All this seems to have started since replacing this indicator bulb ... do you think the corrosion has caused the wiring at this, to short on the frame and cause all these problems ..Any help would be very welcome .


Hi  Jaymz,

If you have no power then it might be a blown fuse.
I would suggest checking the signals ground circuit
as it sounds like a short circuit somewhere.

The bulb holder might be corroded or some wires
damaged and causing some problems.

Usually a dead short will blow the fuses but a poor
connection can cause the lights not to flash etc.

Some true electronic spray cleaner will be better to use
than wd40. Most electronic stores or auto parts stores
should have it. The best is "DeOxit" and "MG Chemical brands"
You can also get "bulb grease" or dielectric grease to coat
the socket and bulb to keep water and corrosion out.

I think the problem may be with the signal light but
don't rule out the possibility of two things or more
going wrong and creating confusion.

First deal with getting the power on and the signal cleaned
up and then if it is still having problems let me know
or see if you can diagnose what is happening.

You might try disconnecting that signal to see if
the other things work when it is disconnected.
That will tell you if the light is the problem.

It does seem like your problems started with that signal light
so that would be my first thing to recheck.
The bulb sockets can get very corroded inside
from moisture and the connection can be poor
or shorted out.


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Wayne S.


Licensed Motorcycle Mechanic, Knowledge of motorcycles from 1960 up, Japanese, British and most other brand motorcycle repairs.


Worked for Yamaha, Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki British: Triumph, Norton, BSA Other: Most Scooters and Mo-Peds

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