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Discussion Starter #1
First off let me say that I'm sure anyone who has read any of my posts would agree, I generally like this machine. I've customized it and ridden it a lot. For the most part it has been a reliable steed. Except one very big, very important, and as far as I'm concerned, very dangerous issue. An issue that I've seen others having.

This weekend was stupid cold. I knew it was gonna be cold on Saturday so I had attached the battery maintainer overnight Friday. The bike started... eventually, after much cranking and feathering the throttle I was finally able to coax it to life before draining the last electron from the (fully charged) battery. It was -18 celsius (about zero F). Went on a good long, and very cold run, then came back to the camp and reconnected the charger. This morning it was even colder (-20) and it just cranked and cranked until the fully charged battery was dead. Connected some booster cables to the truck (which involved removing the windshield so I could get the battery cover off - really fun fumbling with tools in -20 weather and 40MPH wind) and cranked the **** out of it some more. Eventually it started, thank God because I didn't fancy having to push or winch it onto the trailer.

The last time I had the problem back in February I called the dealer with the VIN and my machine is not affected by the decompression spring issue. Also, the bike turns over plenty fast (at least until the battery dies), it just won't fire. And of course the dealer can't duplicate the complaint because it's never -20 when I can get the bike in. And now it's March, so -20 is becoming increasingly rare (in fact temperatures like that are very rare this time of year and may have even been a record, it's supposed to be around +3). By the time the temps get that low again the warranty will be over.

I am not impressed. Especially when my brother in law hops onto his beat up old carbureted 2003 Arctic Cat 400 and it starts right up. Not impressed at all. In fact, so unimpressed that I am giving very serious thought to trading it in on a side-by-side. The starting issues alone aren't driving this - my own medical problems are the chief driver (I have carpal tunnel syndrome in my right hand, it goes numb after riding for awhile, so numb I can't work the throttle) but the cold weather reliability is certainly not adding any check marks in the "keep it" column.
 

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Have you tried turning the key off and back on a couple of times after the fuel pump pressurizes the fuel system? Also how about not touching the throttle at all when you try to start?

The only problem that I have had with mine in below 0 F is it starting and then dying the first couple of times that I start it. I do know that these machines appear to be cold blooded when the temperatures drop which is a bad thing. I wonder if a air intake heater might help, but then that might just kill the battery. If you are somewhere that you have power a hair drier blowing hot air into the intake might help.
 

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We are living in the same province j4k and , knock on wood, I have not had this issue. My only real complaint is how Yamaha has leaned these machines out to pass emission tests. The only truly perform the way they should at higher rpm. At slower speed, the exhaust gas temps are ridiculous. These things are almost crying for a fuel optimizer which is bs in my opinion.
 

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Your issue seemed similar to mine (cold start), if you haven't tried it yet, try either 0W-30 or 5W-30 oil, solved my problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
When I first tried to start it I did not touch the throttle. It was only after extended cranking that I tried WOT to maybe clear a flood condition (although I could not smell raw fuel, so I don't think it was flooding anyway). I always wait until the fuel system is primed before cranking.

I'm a mechanic by trade so I know how hard it is to diagnose an intermittent issue, especially one that only presents itself in very specific conditions, but this issue in these conditions could be dangerous. I'd be afraid to leave the machine and go into the woods hunting for a few hours, in case I come out and it doesn't start. Also the warranty is almost up and it could get worse. These are not things somebody should have to worry about in a newer machine.
 

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With the 700 being fuel injected even if it is a throttle body injection there should be no flooding like you would experience with a carburetor.

When I mentioned the key off and then back on I was thinking of pressurizing the fuel system a couple of times just in case there is a air lock.

Have you tried a fuel additive to eliminate moisture?


I'm just trying to grab a straw for you to see if we can narrow it down.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I know there should be no flooding, but there are things that can cause flooding with fuel injection, such as a bad temp. sensor. Usually, though, when a temp sensor goes bad it'll flood when hot, and merely run rich when cold. A bad TPS could also cause flooding because if the ECM thinks you're commanding more fuel it will deliver more fuel.

I tried the key on/off/on/off/on thing - in fact, on Saturday, when it finally started, it was after doing this (but I was also holding the throttle wide open). This morning the on/off/on/off/on thing didn't work. The only thing that worked was cranking it for a solid 45-60 seconds while connected to the truck because the little bitty factory battery didn't have the capacity to spin it that long.

I haven't been running fuel additive, but I do run supreme gas (which is *ahem* supposed to have additives in it.) I don't think moisture is an issue because it starts when it's only moderately cold (say, -5 to -10). It seems to only be when it's stupid cold (-15 or worse). We didn't have a lot of that kind of cold this year, but every time we did it's been an issue.

I run Liquid Moly 5W40 Euro-spec synthetic (if it's good enough for Porsche, BMW, Mercedes, etc it's good enough for the bike). With the cold viscosity of 5 and the fact that Euro-spec oil is really, really slippery this is not the issue - in fact it turns over fine, it just doesn't want to fire.
 

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This sucks just4kixx. I may be getting the kodiak or grizzly soon but being in the same neck of the woods as you are, i may go suzuki or honda instead.
 

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Have you thought about contacting Yamaha corporate and seeing if they can help you out?

I know that you have said that your Kodiak wasn't involved with the decompression spring issue but perhaps the engine serial number might be close enough to the problem ones or even the vin number could be close enough to look at it. I'll have to look on my service manual and see if there even is a engine serial number or if it is the same as the vin number on the Kodiak.
 

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Have you verified power to the ECU and spark to the spark plug?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I didn't actually verify power to the ECU, but the fuel pump ran and stopped like it's supposed to, showing that the ECU is controlling it. As for the spark plug, I did not get that deep into it because it finally started, and because it was cold as **** out. I think it's a fuel issue, though, because if the plug wasn't firing I'd have smelled raw gas (it would have flooded)
 

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That is the sad and bad thing about trying to trouble shoot a problem that only raises its ugly head when it is so cold that you can only work on it for a couple of minutes at a time. I can say that I have been there and done that.

Hopefully it will fail completely before you get tired of dealing with it and you will be able to figure out the problem. I have always said that it is hard to fix something that isn't broken, and if it is broken then it is easy to take care of.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
how many hrs on your bike?
No gauges or hour meter, but I'd put it at well under 100, just based on the odometer on my father's Kingquad (he bought his and I bought mine at the same time and they were usually ridden together)
 

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I had similar problems with my bike when i first got it. Back to dealer couple times with no real resolution. Dealer did state that I needed to put more hrs on bike to complete break-in period. I just thought to myself, "what a crock of ****". well after bike hit 26hrs it was like it just flipped a switch. I haven't had any starting issues with it since. now have 36hrs with not ever having a problem since.
But sounds like u have well over the break in hrs. now.
 

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The bikes are tuned ridiculously lean to pass emissions standards. i see EHS and hmf making a killing selling tuners for these machines.
 
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