We walk outside to run an errand, to go to school or work, and UGH, our scooter won’t start! How frustrating. Here are some basic things to check quickly to get back on the road.
- First: The basic questions:
- Did you hold in the brake? (Some scooters require the right brake to be pressed)
- Is the kill-switch off?
- Is the key all the way on? (Sounds dumb I know, but as a repair shop Manager, I get scooters in here all the time where the ignition is sticky and doesn’t turn on all the way. The owners are embarrassed when I make sure the ignition is turned all the way on, and the scooter starts right up. Always works for the mechanic, right?)
- Second: Will it kick start? Try kick starting it. When kick starting, don’t give the scooter any gas (you might flood it). Try to kick start-it 5-10 times. If that doesn’t work, give it some gas and try again.
- Third: Check the fuse next to the battery. Most fuse boxes next to the battery have an extra fuse in case the original one blew out. Check the fuse first. That only takes a minute. If it’s shot, replace it with the extra one sitting in the case.
- Fourth: Jump Start-it – Scooters are not like cars. A scooter battery can be so dead, that there is nothing anyone can do to make it start, except charge the battery or replace it. So in the meantime, jump-it. Now a word of caution. These little scooter batteries can burn up quickly, so if you choose to jump it, only put the cables on a few seconds, quickly start it and disconnect it. If you put on cables for 5-15 minutes, you can destroy your battery. These scooter batteries can’t handle the amps put out by car batteries. If you want to buy a trickle charger, get a 2 amp charger.
- Fifth: Pull out your can of Starting Fluid (you know, the one you bought when you bought the scooter – every scooter owner should have a can), and spray some fluid onto the UNI Air Filter you have on your carburetor. They try to start it again. If it starts, keep it running with the throttle. Keep your Starting Fluid with you in the seat until you figure out what is going on with your scooter.
These steps should get most scooters going and get you on the road. If these don’t work, it might be something more serious, but at least we’ve done the basics and saved us a repair bill for something that was silly or easy to fix by ourselves.