BMW R1200R Forum banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone- Today I picked up a new 2013 R1200R. Less than 20 miles later with a full tank my low fuel light goes on. I call dealer and they said I need to bring the bike in for service and they sounded like they knew exactly what the issue was, something about a fuel strip sensor?? Anyone have an issue with this. I've always had used bikes (not BMW) and thankfully never had issues. This is my first new bike and my first BMW and I went from being super excited to kinda bummed. Any advice appreciated. Thanks.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
335 Posts
Oh, No, Not another defective fuel strip thread! Sweettooth, don't despair. Read the threads on this Forum about the issue and take comfort that this may be the ONLY known widespread problem with the r12r. As you will learn, the repair is quick and, in most instances, does not recur. If it does, the item is covered under the warranty. Most of us do not rely on the fuel countdown or lights. We look to the trip meter, which we reset on refueling. 210 miles and I'm looking for a gas station. Even when everything works, the fuel/miles countdown and light cannot be relied on to take the tank down to the bottom or to wring the maximum miles out of the tank before refueling.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Thanks las. After posting I continued researching and did learn about the on going fuel strip issue. Really disturbing to know this has been goin on for years. I just can't understand that. This is my first new bike and after researching and test riding I decided on BMW not just because I like the R12 but also becuase of the BMW reputation. I have to say I'm disappointed in how casual BMW seems to be in resolving this issue. From what I've read some people have had the strip replaced multiple times. How is that acceptable??
I too have had gaugeless bikes and had to re-set tripmeter and count miles. I'm sorry but I paid for a brand new bike and expect it to work properly. The same would apply for a new car, I expect the gas gauge to work and not have to watch mileage. Just outrageous to me to spend that kind of cash and have a warning light on after 20 miles!
I don't understand how the same problem can go on for years and BMW continues to use the same faulty fuel system technology on their bikes. It may be pointless but I'm filing a complaint with BMW North America.
I now have to also deal with a Harley riding husband and the old "I told you so".....sigh....
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,023 Posts
I agree that BMW should have sorted this out as soon as it was identified but don't let it put you off an otherwise excellent bike. All the reasons for you buying the bike in the first place are still there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
800 Posts
I now have to also deal with a Harley riding husband and the old "I told you so".....sigh....
10 years and 60,000 miles from now when this is the only warranty issue you have had to deal with, make sure you've made a note of this "I told you so" conversation and revisit it with the hubby. Ask him how many issues he's had with the HD in that time. Or just talk to a few other HD owners and take a count of how many parts have just fallen off due to the 19th century technology. :2guns:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks Dave & yonderbob! I'll try and keep the advice in mind on my ride back to dealer for service. Second day of ownership and first day of service, jeez...
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
335 Posts
Sweettooth, couldn't agree more; but, as Dave says, this problem is minor and singular. While many have replaced the strip multiple times, the vast majority of those who have had the strip replaced, do it once. A word to the wise: keep telling your HD riding hubby that the bike is not reliable and is a horrible ride- whatever you can do to keep him from riding it. If he does ride it, you may have a hard time getting it back!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
800 Posts
Thanks Dave & yonderbob! I'll try and keep the advice in mind on my ride back to dealer for service. Second day of ownership and first day of service, jeez...
I felt the same way! (My fuel strip was "remounted" once and finally replaced - no problems since and i'm at 7,500 miles) I got a free BMW hat for my troubles...

Some other Hubby strategies:

1. Take him to a twisty road and spank him.

2. Take him to a drag strip and spank him.

3. Start with a full tank and ride till your respective fuel lights come on (once yours is fixed :001_unsure:) Tell him you'll wait for him. Don't. Then spank him.

4. Convince him that husband spanking is a healthy marital activity for well adjusted couples... :001_tt1: (HD owners will believe anything...)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,623 Posts
the repair is quick and, in most instances, does not recur. If it does, the item is covered under the warranty. Most of us do not rely on the fuel countdown or lights. We look to the trip meter, which we reset on refueling. 210 miles and I'm looking for a gas station. Even when everything works, the fuel/miles countdown and light cannot be relied on to take the tank down to the bottom or to wring the maximum miles out of the tank before refueling.
If it were that simple. If it is for you, great!
I rode 100, 000 miles on my previous bike, an 1150 with the primitive always working low fuel light, and ran out of gas once. On the R12, I've run out twice in 4500 miles in three + months.
I replaced my strip when I ran out of gas at 180 miles on the tank, the low fuel light being on for a total of 2 miles before coasting to a stop on I 530 somewhere in Arkansas showing 38 miles left to go.
Today, about a 6 weeks later, the replacement failed me. Showing 119 miles to go on the tank, and no low fuel light illuminated, and having traveled 202 miles on the tank, I sputtered to a stop in north Mississippi somewhere. On the road, I now carry gas with me though, so I put in about a half gallon and filled up 5 miles down the road...5.1 gallons to the bottom of the filler. I know 202 is a fair amount, but it's not 210, and I was planning on refilling there no matter what the giddy display said.

Now, having said that, I know the suggestion to handle this annoyance is to reset the odometer at each fillup...I do that. But when do you refuel? 210 miles won't work for me. There seems to be a wide range of how far a tank will go, depending on riding variables. But, these were not city vs highway miles. Both times I ran out were long highway rides. I add that I have also gotten 222 miles on a tank, similar conditions, and had about half a gallon remaining. That was right after the strip was replaced, so it seemed to be working then.
So, when do I refuel? So far, it seems that it would be prudent to refuel at significantly less than 180. By having no reliable gauge, and a low fuel light that is tied to the dysfunctional fuel strip, I am a setup to run out of gas. I find myself doing the math of looking at elapsed miles and checking my mpg and thinking where I want to get and how far I should get on this tank, etc...Isn't that why the fuel gauge was invented, so the driver would not be distracted by that?
To quote Sweet Brown, "Nobody's got time for that!" And what happens if, being a mortal, you forget to reset the fuel gauge? There is no warning mechanism independent of the fuel strip, as the low fuel light is intgrated into it: one fails, they both fail. That is a bad design.
So, I will go back to the shop--75 miles away, on a day off--for the quick fix, hoping that 3rd time's a charm and having no confidence it will be, or for how long. Granted this is a great bike, and this is not a deal breaker, but until I reach some sort of detente with this potentially dangerous annoyance, enjoyment is tempered with dread.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
You guys are a hoot!! Sweet Brown lol!! Hubby's taking the R12 for a spin on his day off Monday. I'll let him have his fun and then I'll spank him!!

Sorry to read about your strip failing today DrStrangelove. I agree with your lack of confidence with the quick fix. After reading all the posts I'm expecting this to be an on going issue with my bike but will hope for the best. I just don't understand how this has gone on for soo long. For me, part of the lure of BMW motorcycles are the safety conscious riders I usually see riding them. (Although hubby on the HD is always rocking ATGATT :) So I don't understand how the failing fuel strip issues haven't been persued in a more aggressive manner since it can easily be a safety issue and it affects so many riders. Today I posted a complaint on the NHTSA website. Someone on another forum suggested that if enough owners did so it may help the matter be addressed.
https://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/ivoq/index.cfm
I'm also calling BMW North America on Monday to complain, I was unable to speak to anyone today. I know I'm late to the game but for my own piece of mind I need to put in my two cents. It's irritating to me that I just purchased a new bike and I'm being told to re-set trip meter instead of using the fuel gauge. I paid for the gauge, I wan't it to work.
I also read that BMW recalled 5-series cars 2010-2011 for similar issues with a fuel strip because that was considered a safety issue. I think running out of gas on a bike on a highway is just as dangerous. Are we motorcyle riders not as important as the cagers? Maybe the media needs to get involved. My apologies if I'm incorrect with the info but regardless, BMW needs to resolve this.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,623 Posts
thanks for that link, Sweettoof (as Sweet Brown would say), I just entered my report.
And it is dangerous to suddenly lose power at 70 mph. It is a safety issue.

John
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,873 Posts
sweettooth, We are very happy to have you and your husband with us on the Forum. Please ask him to post a ride review after he spends a day in the Roadster saddle. It's bound to have better brakes and lighter handling than his Harley-Davidson. I for one would be very curious about his impressions. Who knows, we make convert him yet. Look forward to your posts, comments, and opinions as you enjoy the Roadster. The fuel strip issue, a few bad fork seals, weeny heater grips, jerky throttle, owners who want a more comfortable seat, but after it's all said and done, none of them are deal breakers for me. Hope you feel the same way in a year or two.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Dr Strangelove- I think it's great you filed a report. I may start another post to get others to file as well. If all that comes out of it is a recall, at least the owners who are dealing with the problem and out of warranty won't have to pay for it.

Clem- Thank you for the warm welcome. I'm curious to know what hubby's going to say about the ride as well. Keep you posted!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
215 Posts
Dr Strangelove- I think it's great you filed a report. I may start another post to get others to file as well. If all that comes out of it is a recall, at least the owners who are dealing with the problem and out of warranty won't have to pay for it.

Clem- Thank you for the warm welcome. I'm curious to know what hubby's going to say about the ride as well. Keep you posted!

I just bought a 2013 R as well.. was kind of hoping that BMW (silently) fixed this crazy fuel strip issue.. but it seems that I will have to worry about that too on the 2013 model.. just hope that more people file complaints (it has already been discussed on every BMW forum I have seen so far) and that BMW finally fixes this issue!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
atractaspis- Congrats on the new R12!! Hope you have a healthy fuel strip.
I had a VLX once, no fuel gauge issues there! :)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
215 Posts
atractaspis- Congrats on the new R12!! Hope you have a healthy fuel strip.
I had a VLX once, no fuel gauge issues there! :)
the vlx was my first bike (am still pretty new to riding) .. and I did have to watch the mileage there carefully..hated the feeling of just simply running out of gas and then switching to the reserve .. I agree with you that I paid a lot of money for this bike.. which includes the fuel strip and I want it to work. Even in my car I monitor the miles..but I still want the gauge to work ...

I did go up to 75mph with my VLX... luckily I never had to switch to the reserve tank while passing a semi on the freeway.. With the R there I will be quicker on the road and probably more often on freeways than with my VLX ..so running out of fuel while passing a semi would be no fun... :mad:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,106 Posts
Here's my FWIW input from sunny Oz. I had identical problems with the fuel sensor on a 1200R from 2009. #1 packed up and was replaced under warranty. That too malfunctioned, at times showing >500km to empty, although it slowly rectified itself as it neared empty. Another strip was installed - same deal. Unwisely, the dealer told me that BMW HQ here had said to him that they "weren't going to keep throwing new strips at the bike". Red rag/ bull - they did...!

Finally, after about the third or fourth replacement I gave up (I think they were hoping that I would). By this time I'd spent countless hours forensically recording every drop of fuel, every km ridden, every fuel display read-out, etc.

Eventually BMW offered to refund the $350 (Oz) for the OBC: given all the screwing around I rejected that offer and finally settled for that plus an additional free two year warranty extension.

Now - I've just bought, and have yet to take delivery of, my third 1200R, so I do hope this issue has been resolved - I had entirely forgotten about it: but maybe not! Aaaarrgggghhh!

L of S
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
26 Posts
Phew!
You'd thing that BMW would think up a better system of fuel monitoring than this pain in the A*& fuel strip!! Everyone has a tale to tell of the strip faliure.
This very monring, i turned on my 2012 classic, to be informed that the tank was half full. A quick look under the filler cap told me that i had brimmed it 24Hrs earlier (Why i didn't trust my memory, i don't know!)
A quick 'jiggle' of the tank saw the indicator rise to full. The fuel strip seemed to work fine today, showng an accurate reduction if fuel back down to half full.
I decided to brim her again and, guess what? The fuel strip indicated half full, until my 'jiggle' brought it back up to full.

Is it time for a waraunty visit to my dealer??
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Also have a new R1200R delivered with fuel light constantly lit.. was simply told that it will be fixed when I next come in for my 1000km service.. I suppose I will get good at guessing my fuel level.. too much to ask for what is such an expensive bike from BMW ?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,623 Posts
Also have a new R1200R delivered with fuel light constantly lit.. was simply told that it will be fixed when I next come in for my 1000km service.. I suppose I will get good at guessing my fuel level.. too much to ask for what is such an expensive bike from BMW ?
Report it to the NHTSA as many of us have. Maybe the gov't can do something positive and help. It's VERY easy to do. And what's to fear? They already have all of your phone records and emails. If you need help please ask.

One thing is certain, BMWNA will not come forward except to put in one after another.
Many believe this is a safety issue, but not everyone. Really can't see the the argument against it being a safety issue

John
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top