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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Earlier this year I had an issue with the bike shutting off while riding and then firing right back up, as if the kill switch was being turned off and right back on. It was nearly impossible to diagnose as it only happened while riding and there was no code showing up, and it was completely intermittent. I went through the wire harness and fuse boxes and found no issues. I installed a new fuel pump but the issue remained. Some time later I removed the fairings again and went looking for clues but found none. I rerouted a few wires that seemed to be out of place but that was about it. After buttoning things back up the second time, the problem seemed to miraculously disappear for no known reason. I put in approximately 800 miles with no issues.

Yesterday it came back. First it died and the bike rolled for a couple seconds then fired back up........like being push started. Then a bit later it shut off and rolled to a stop. I cycled the key and when I turned it back on the fuel pump would not prime. Tried a couple times but no luck. The fuel pump will not prime the injectors. I am stranded but fortunately only about 50 miles from home. Called the wife and she put my ramp in the truck and drove to where I was waiting.

Back in the garage the bike now has code 39 "ECU communication error". Based on this code, the fuel pump not priming and the way it switched off and on all the other times, my best guess is that the relay for the fuel pump, (which is in the same unit as the relay for the ECU) was having issues and finally failed. The relay unit is about 115 bucks. Either that or the ECU relay, or both.

Three things worth noting here. The relay has never been removed so the connections should be fine, however I will be checking that next. Also, this started before I sent my ECU to Ivan for his latest upgrade in order to remove my Power Commander, and continued to do so after. So I don't think it is anything to do with the ECU itself. Could be wrong about that but I hope not as that is a very expensive part!!!!! The new fuel pump did not solve the issue in the beginning so I believe I can eliminate the fuel pump from being the culprit.

I know there are members more knowledgeable of this bikes electronics than myself so feel free to chime in. For now the bike is sitting in the basement garage and I am considering the relay unit replacement as my next move.
 

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Loose wire to the kill switch or fault in the kill switch circuit. Oh wait there is a check engine code. Just strange how you moved some wires around and it seemed to work for awhile?
 

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You know, the fuel pump relay and the relay box are used on pretty much every Kawasaki street bike that was ever made. It might be worth trying one. I bought a spare (ebay) that was listed for the 300 ninja . It was from a newer, crashed bike so you figure it had to be running. I know I didnt pay 20.00 for it. You could also get a voltage regulator. All the cheap kawasaki streetbikes use the one that we have. I believe the starter relay is another one of those shared components.

I know the owners manual directs a person to replace the ecu at every trouble shooting stage. I think they even say to replace it for a flat tire,

I've watched these kawasaki forums since at least 2010. Earlier for the dirt bike forums. I've never seen someone who lost an ecu that didnt do it themselves. Usually it was a battery hooked up, backwards. Otherwise, they just dont fail. That includes the concours 14, and all its extra nonsense.

1043, your idea still works. No power would cause an ecu communications issue.
 

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For example:



 

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How old is the battery, when you rerouted the wires did you charge the battery?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
How old is the battery, when you rerouted the wires did you charge the battery?
New battery in the spring of this year.
 

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Can we say the charging system is ok? I think we can. His bike ran for a while, then it stopped. Really soon after, it restarted. A dead battery, or faulty charging g system wouldnt have allowed that.

Ecu code 39 said it is a communications error between the ecu and a sensor. When it doesnt see a correct reading, from a sensor, it shuts everything down. Including the fuel pump.

What sensors do we have? A camshaft position sensor and crankshaft position sensor. We have the Airbox pressure sensor........and the 2 sensors on the throttle body. What else did I miss? Ivan flashed his ecu, so no emissions system to worry about.

I would think if any sensor in this bunch was a problem, it might cause this issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Can we say the charging system is ok? I think we can. His bike ran for a while, then it stopped. Really soon after, it restarted. A dead battery, or faulty charging g system wouldnt have allowed that.

Ecu code 39 said it is a communications error between the ecu and a sensor. When it doesnt see a correct reading, from a sensor, it shuts everything down. Including the fuel pump.

What sensors do we have? A camshaft position sensor and crankshaft position sensor. We have the Airbox pressure sensor........and the 2 sensors on the throttle body. What else did I miss? Ivan flashed his ecu, so no emissions system to worry about.

I would think if any sensor in this bunch was a problem, it might cause this issue.
Could be a sensor issue, but the service manual only states "ECU communication error" for the code and nothing more.

Before it would just die for a second and then run perfectly. Could never recreate it at home in the garage. At least now I have a clue, with the fuel pump not priming and a code to hint at what it is.
 

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When you say die as in the bike would totally shut off? Speedometer & Lights? Or it would die like it ran out of gas?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
When you say die as in the bike would totally shut off? Speedometer & Lights? Or it would die like it ran out of gas?
Not as if it ran out of gas. I could see the speedometer go through it's start up sweep as the bike regained power.
 

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The ECU communicates with its various sensors. Based on the information it gets back, from the sensors, it knows what outdoor temperature it is, elevation, engine temp, etc. Based on that info, it knows what fuel maps and timing maps to run. There are hundreds of fuel maps and timing maps to choose from based on the bike looking for the perfect maps to run at any/all times.

I know that's being simple, but that's all it does. If it were to lose input from any of the sensors, its lost control of the engine, and has to shut everything off to prevent damage.

That might look like a power issue, when it really wasnt..?
 

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I don't think the ECU will do a 'reset' just because a sensor is off or faulty... It'll light up something on the dashboard and show the rider...
It appears that the ECU is reseting itself... things to look for...
1. Low battery (you have a new battery, this should not be a cause)
2. Bad/marginal wiring (loose/flaky connections or bad ground, or even a marginally crimped connector like I found out today on my diesel generator set)
3. Bad contacts in the key block that's causing intermittent contact
4. Bad regulator and/or contacts
5. Bad relays
6. Bad ECU
 

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Sounds like the ECU is losing power for a split second, then turns off and back on. I used the kill switch to turn my bike off today, the dash will stay on. I'm sure its a wiring or connection problem, when you rerouted those wires the bike worked fine for awhile? What year of Ninja 1000 2013?
 

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Hes already done the electrical troubleshooting and eliminated the battery. It's new. Also, it appears to be staying charged. That isnt likley with a bad battery terminal, cable or even a sketchy rectifier. Those usually fail, or cook the battery. So, what can stop everything, then return as if nothing was ever wrong? Kickstand switch, clutch switch and such have been eliminated. All the easy, obvious stuff.

If it loses a major sensor, it has to pull the plug. Instantly. Every time. In order to stay running the bike needs fuel, air and spark. If you lost a crankshaft sensor, or cam sensor, the bike would have no way to know when these events should happen. The only safe move it could make is to pull the plug on everything.

You would see the code if the sensor went 100% bad, on a start up. Not if it were running and lost its signal, or connection.

If you lost a temp sensor, or pressure sensor, it would throw a f1 warning. I've done that with the airbox sensor. But, if it's something major, it cant/wont stay running long enough to do so.

The old bike does have a very basic system for codes, but nothing like the newer bikes have. The new bike might catch this and offer a code, but the old bike wouldnt.

You know what else? The old bike doesnt require you to reset the codes. The code goes away, on it's own, when the error is corrected. A bad/intermittent connection would fix itself like hes seeing.
 

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This should tell you which wire to check. Looks like service code 39 only occurs when the front display and ECU lose communication. I would say it's either if the front display loses power or the line from ECU to display would be where to start looking for the intermittent wire. Also the ground wire for the display. The only wiring issue I've ever experienced is the ground connections. Kawasaki's "joint connectors" have proven (on my Ninjas) not to be reliable.
31926
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
This should tell you which wire to check. Looks like service code 39 only occurs when the front display and ECU lose communication. I would say it's either if the front display loses power or the line from ECU to display would be where to start looking for the intermittent wire. Also the ground wire for the display. The only wiring issue I've ever experienced is the ground connections. Kawasaki's "joint connectors" have proven (on my Ninjas) not to be reliable.
View attachment 31926
Appears this is what I need to check next. Looks simple enough.
 

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@ Johnmark101 Any pic's? Word's can only take us so far brother!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
@ Johnmark101 Any pic's? Word's can only take us so far brother!
Nothing is visibly out of sorts so I am not certain what pictures would be relevant. I am open to suggestion.

However, based on what the service manual indicates for code 39, I need to check the ground for the meter, and if that is okay I need to check continuity on the wire between the meter and ECU. Should be easy enough. Hope to get around to that in the next day or two. Will report back with the results and am hoping this is something simple.
 

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I know we had the spot where we grounded our power Commanders, but somewhere near the rear of the airbox, isnt there a grounding point with several wires coming together?

I'm not sure code 39 is to be taken, literally, every time its displayed. If you google "Kawasaki code 39" people have solved the issue with new batteries. I believe it could be that the ecu lost communication because xxx happened, first.,....
 
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