In this article, we are going to talk about the symptoms of a bad stator, why it’s so important for our motorcycles, and give some tips on how we can fix that problem at home. So sit back, relax, grab a cup of coffee or tea because we’re going deep into this one.
What Is A Stator In A Motorcycle
A motorcycle stator is responsible for generating power for all the electronics that are present in the bike.
A motorcycle’s stator is an important part of the electrical system on your bike. It may not be as exciting as some other parts, but it is an important one that needs to work properly if you want your bike to run, have lights, or function with any electrical capacity.
If you’re having issues with your bike’s electrics, checking your stator first is a good place to start.
For example, when your bike fails to charge or power lights and other electronics properly, or the lights start dimming when idle and even while riding, or perhaps the lights flicker, and buzzing noise comes out from the electrical system – some of the common symptoms of a faulty stator.
The symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator are pretty easy to recognize…if you know what to look for! Keep reading so you’ll know what symptoms might mean a bad stator and how to fix a bad motorcycle stator.
What Symptoms Might Mean A Bad Stator? There are several symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator, which include:
5 Ways to Recognize a Bad Motorcycle Stator
- No Spark, Weak Spark, or Intermittent Spark
- No signs of life from the headlight when cranking over the engine
- No charging light on the dash When riding,
- No power from any electrical components (lights, gauges, accessories)
- Runs well but the battery goes dead quick when lights are on
No Spark, Weak Spark, or Intermittent Spark
This is a very common symptom of a bad stator and is also known and ‘Misfiring’.
The stator is the one that is responsible for providing the spark required by the spark plug. When the stator malfunctions, it is no longer able to send out strong enough sparks. As a result, you end up getting a very weak spark. This event could be either regular or could happen seldom but sporadically.
There could be instances where you start with occasional ‘misfiring’ but sooner rather than later it worsens and you end up getting no spark at all. Your motorcycle will eventually not start at all.
This is one of the symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator because this malfunctioning part is unable to generate electricity, hence no spark.
No Signs of Life From the Headlight When Cranking Over The Engine
If there is no sign of life from the headlight, that could be because no power is getting to it. The problem may be in the fuse box or at the stator.
Have someone crank over the engine while you watch for a spark in the bulb. If it doesn’t light up, then your stator is bad and needs to be replaced.
Your motorcycle’s headlights going out are symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator because the stator is what generates electricity which powers your headlight.
No Charging Light On the Dash When Riding
If your bike is unable to charge while you are riding, your stator could be bad. However, to check this, you’ll need the help of a voltmeter.
The simple process is that you turn on the headlight along with all other lights in the instrument panel so that you can see the exact value of voltage that is being delivered to each bulb when you are supposedly driving.
Now if there isn’t any power delivered and the needle of the voltmeter stays still, then it implies that there is no charging current coming from the stator.
This is what happens basically when the charging light fails to illuminate when you turn on your ignition. However, it is safe to note that a bad motorcycle stator requires further diagnosis using a voltmeter since it might also be an issue at the battery or elsewhere in the electrical system.
No power from any electrical components (lights, gauges, accessories)
If you suddenly find that your bike’s headlights go out, or if the instrument panel is no longer giving any readings, then it implies that your stator has gone bad.
This symptom of a bad motorcycle stator occurs in a severe overvoltage situation when the electricity in the system is too much for the regulator to handle and this can cause a short circuit.
Runs Well But The Battery Goes Dead Quick When Lights Are On
In case there isn’t sufficient voltage being supplied to power all of your electrical components when riding, symptoms of a bad stator may show up.
If this is happening, you’ll notice that while riding at night with lights on will make your battery run down quickly. This symptom of a bad motorcycle stator is because during the night the headlights demand a lot of energy from the electrical system.
If these symptoms are faced by you, then there is a high chance that your motorcycle is suffering from the symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator. Either you will need a new one with a rewiring, or it has to be repaired in some way.
This brings us to the question of –
How To Fix A Bad Motorcycle Stator?
Replacing a motorcycle stator is not an easy task. This is the reason why it’s always best to have the symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator checked by a professional, and have them either restore or replace your affected part.
Depending on how often you service your motorcycle will most likely decide if you do this yourself or get a mechanic to help out.
However, if you want to fix a motorcycle stator yourself, there are four ways that you could do so:
3 Ways to Fix a Motorcycle Stator
- Rebuilding the Unit
- Swapping out the Diodes
- Repair the shorting together of the three separate phase windings
Rebuilding the Unit
If you are thinking of repairing the symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator by rebuilding the unit, then this is not an easy task, only if you do not pay attention to details.
This is because each winding in the rotor has to be done separately, and it involves taking out the laminations where the wire is wound around. You need patience for this as well!
There’s no shortcut here, so you will have to remove every single phase one at a time – get the bare core stack together, clean all up with solvent and put new insulation on each phase before reassembling back.
Take your time while doing this since rushing through could cause more damage or even cause a short circuit into something.
Swapping Out The Diodes
Another way of fixing symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator is by swapping out the diodes that are located in the rotor. The symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator will occur when these diodes end up shorting together, which creates an unwanted resistance in the rotor.
To do this, you’ll have to open your stator case and take out each one of the individual diodes using a wire brush or sandpaper. Then you will have to install the diodes once again after cleaning off all dirt or dust particles from each place where it is installed.
Repairing The Winding Short-Circuits
One way in which symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator can be repaired without compromising on any part of the rotor or its surrounding areas is by repairing any kind of short circuit that’s created between its three separate phase windings.
This process could turn out to bit a bit tricky because here you will have to remove the epoxy, which is quite hard to remove.
Once you do that you can fix the connections by soldering them. You can then try indirect heat or heat staking to fix it in place for good.
If nothing works, you’ll Have to Replace the Stator
Ultimately if all of these abovementioned ways do not work for you and you fail to fix your motorcycle stator, you’ll have to replace it.
A bad stator can compromise on a lot of things. Most importantly when you are riding at night through an unknown and quiet area, a bad stator can make your motorcycle suddenly stop in the middle and make it completely immune to taking any start further.
So, when you cannot fix it, it’s better to replace it.
By now you should know the symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator, what to do about it and how to fix symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator if needed!
But remember that your motorcycle stator will only have a longer life if you take proper care of it. One of the biggest reasons why stators get burned is because of a higher degree of amperage.
So, be on the lower amperage side to give your starter the right amount of longevity.
Make sure you read the signs early when it comes to the symptoms of a bad motorcycle stator that are mentioned in this article. The earlier you notice, the more time you will get to repair your motorcycle stator properly.