BMW R1200RT Won’t Start? (5 Common Problems!)

BMW R1200RT won’t start mainly due to a low battery, defective starter relay, and bad grounding. Faulty spark plugs, a dirty air filter, and a faulty fuel filter also prevent the BMW R1200RT from starting.

Low Battery

BMW R1200RT won’t start just clicks when the battery is too low.


When starting your vehicle, a slow engine crank or weak attempted ignition indicates potential battery issues.

Dashboard lights that dim or flicker point to an aging or faulty alternator no longer properly charging the battery.

Clicking noises from the ignition switch mean electrical connections have become corroded.

Non-functioning accessories like heated seats, radios, power windows, or USB chargers signify problems with fuses, wiring, or the battery itself.

Getting these common electrical issues inspected and repaired promptly helps avoid being stranded with a vehicle that won’t start due to battery failure.

Stay ahead of problems by having your vehicle’s electrical system periodically checked.


Replace the battery on your BMW with a Yuasa YTX16-BS AGM Battery.

BMW R1200RT Won’t Start

Bad Grounding

Hard starts, non-starting, dim or flickering lights, malfunctioning LED screens, or accessories can indicate grounding issues in your motorcycle.

Bad grounding can affect the fuel pump, causing voltage irregularities that lead to malfunctions, overheating, or destruction of the fuel pump.

Damaged grounding causes voltage drops and surges unsuitable for the electric starting system, resulting in erratic or unsuccessful bike starts.

Faulty grounding can lead to overheated wiring, burning insulation, and the creation of open electrical pathways, affecting system integrity.

Improperly grounded ignition coils can run the bike on lower-than-needed voltage, causing sparking and serious systemic malfunctions.

Symptoms can be diagnosed using simple tools and a voltmeter.

Check the Spark Plugs and Air Filter

BMW R1200RT engine may have trouble starting when the spark plugs need to be replaced or aren’t properly gapped.

Over time, spark plugs get worn and build up carbon deposits, making it harder for the engine to ignite the air-fuel mixture.

BMW R1200RT fails to start when the spark that ignites the air-fuel mixture doesn’t occur.

Dirty air filters can also restrict airflow to the engine, resulting in loss of power or difficulty starting.

On a BMW R1200RT, occasionally checking spark plug gaps and the air filter, and replacing them when necessary, helps keep the bike starting and running smoothly.

A Defective Starter Relay

Check for power at the starter when trying to start the R1200RT. If there’s no power, it’s likely a relay/solenoid switch issue.

Remove the starter relay/solenoid switch and put a meter or 12v test light across terminals 1 and 2 of the harness connector.

With the key on and in neutral, push the starter button. The test light should light up or show 12v.

If the starter relay is corroded, it can cause intermittent electrical issues.

Try rapping the side of the starter with a hammer while holding the starter button down with the key on. If the bike cranks, the starter likely has internal issues.

Fuel Filter

A delay of half a second or more before the starter motor engages, especially after filling the tank with petrol.

Despite visits to the garage, including checks on the starter motor and a new battery installation, the problem persists.

The issue is more common in winter and can be attributed to cold fuel.

You might notice some improvement after replacing the battery but it’ll discharge again after repeated attempts at starting the motorcycle.

Such symptoms are usually seen due to issues with the fuel pump, fuel filter, fuel tank vent pipe, water in the fuel tank, and leaking petrol filler cap seal.

Suggestions for potential causes include, or a faulty solenoid in the starter motor.


Some users have found solutions by replacing the starter with an aftermarket one, emphasizing the importance of quality replacement parts.

According to a dealership, the problem may be linked to starter gear binding, especially in certain positions, requiring gear replacement.

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