Why and how often you should service your self (Starter motor)

Self StartElectric or rather to common men, the push button start is now a days has become one of the integral parts of a motorcycle / bike sold in India. Advertising the self start as a feature, is now considered history since even the basic lowest end bikes are also equipped with this handy feature.

However, how often do we keep the actual device, rather the electrical starter motor in our periodical service list ? We just keep on using it thinking its all about the battery but just opposite, infact, the starter motor contains parts which needs periodical maintenance and replacement.

What is a starter motor / self start ?

To most of us, it is the business end of that button which is present and operated by our right thumb when we push it to start the bike.

It’s a electrical device, which has a motor inside, powered by the vehicle battery to spin and start the internal combustion engine. It does the same work which you do when you kick start your bike, but here the manual labor is bypassed with the electrical power supplied by the vehicle battery.

The Starter motor (Self) Honda

Here is a nice YouTube video with explanation about the Self, rather the Starter Motor of our bikes.

Why do you need to service it ?

Most of us, even the service centers would be waiting till that extreme point when in that one fine morning you wake up and fine the self is not working and your bike is having starting trouble, or worst, in a middle of a long ride, when passing through nowhere, all of a sudden, you find that the self starter is faulty.

When or How often the self start motor should be services ?

What we have found out here in NexGenBikes.com real world testings, that the starter motor should be serviced once a year. Replace the Brush Sprint and Brush (on common term the carbon) on every service.

How to service the Self Starter / Starter Motor ?

Here at nexgenbikes.com we always suggest you to service your vehicle from an authorized service center or from any trained mechanic, since improper work may effect the performance and safety of the vehicle. The guides we provide is for your reference only.

First task is to locate and remove the starter motor from the engine and bring it out in the open to work into the module

Removing the mounting screw from the Self Starter motor (Yamaha FZ-16 / Fazer / FZ-S) Removing the mounting screw from the Self Starter motor (Yamaha FZ-16 / Fazer / FZ-S)

Self starter motor removed from the engine

Once removed, its time to remove the screws located on top of the motor to get in side.

Removing the screws to open up the motor housing Inside view of the selof starter motor

Carbon dust deposited inside the motor housing Inside the self starter motor

Detach and remove the armature coil by pulling it out from the casing of the start motor and then clean the contact point to move the carbon dust from the surface of the coil. Clean the start motor housing also, specially the part where the brush and springs are located.

Cleaning the self starter armature coil contact point

Remove the Starter Brush and springs by removing the holding / attachment screws from the housing and replace them with the new one. Clean the housing with soft brush or cloth. Note, always buy genuine parts even if you are getting this work done from an out side workshop other than your regular service center.

Replacing the Starter Motor Carbon brush Replacing the Starter Motor Carbon brush

Once done with the brush and spring replacement, apply little grease on the non electrical movable bearing parts, which wont be inside engine housing. Now its time to put things together.

Greasing and cleaing the armature Service done, putting things back together

How much does it cost ?

The spare would be between Rs. 200 to Rs. 300 depending upon the brand and model of the bike you use. Where as labor charges would be around Rs. 100/-. It would take around 30 mins of your time.

This article applies to following bikes,

  • Bajaj Pulsar 135LS / 150 / 180 / 200 / 220 DTS-i and DTS-Fi / 200 NS / Avenger 200 / 220 DTSi
  • Yamaha R15 / FZ-16 / Fazer / FZ-S
  • TVS Apache RTR 180 / 160
  • Hero MotoCorp Hunk / CBZ eXtreme / Karizma / ZMR
  • Honda Unicorn / Triger / Dazler / CBR 150R / CBR 250R

About Hunky