I have a Suzuki vl250. It's been running great until last weekend I rode it home from work turned it off and the Mrs decided she wanted to go for a ride only problem is bike wont start! Since then I have managed to start the bike twice. The fist time it rode fine switched it off went back to it a few hours later and no go. I got it home on a trailer and a week later drained the float bowl and cleaned the plugs and boom she fired up. But after letting it idle for about 5 mins I went to give it a little throttle and it stalled and now wont start again. Motor tried to turn over and seems to have less enthusiasm each time I hit the starter button. Any ideas?

  • How did the plugs look when you cleaned them. Did they give any indication of running rich/lean?
    – HandyHowie
    Oct 25, 2015 at 15:58
  • How does the bike behave when it starts or doesn't start? Does it turn over and try to start? Or the engine doesn't even spin over? Does it cough and sputter or how does it behave? What year is the bike? Oct 25, 2015 at 17:18
  • Plugs looked fine the normal anount of black. Its 2008.
    – Nick
    Oct 25, 2015 at 20:28
  • Also i went out to it thismorning and decided to start the bike with the fuel cap off and bang first try she goes. I belive that means a blockage??
    – Nick
    Oct 25, 2015 at 20:29
  • @Nick - Normal spark plugs should look tan in color. Black indicates either running rich or burning oil. Oct 25, 2015 at 21:09

1 Answer 1


It sounds as though you float is allowing too much fuel in the bowl, which is in effect flooding the bike. When you said you drained the bowl and cleaned the plug and it fired right up is a typical sign of this happening. Also, after five minutes of idle time, stalling when you give it throttle, then not wanting to start could be a sign of dumping too much fuel as well. Like I said in my comment, a good running vehicle (near stoich) will have a light tan color. If it's black it means it's either getting too much fuel or is burning oil (a 2-stroke motor will have black plugs). Either the float is sinking (not sealed and taking on fuel) or the needle valve continues to allow fuel to come into the bowl after the float has seated it. I'd suggest getting a float and needle valve kit for your bike.

As for it getting more sluggish, I'd bet you are running down the battery with constantly trying to get it started. I'd suggest putting the battery on a charger and getting it up to full capacity and trying it again. I'll be you'll see a huge difference.

  • Thanks for your help.as it turns out the tank air valve was blocked hench why the bike would only start with the cap off. I will look into a float kit anyway as the bike is still not performing as well as i think it should. Thanks for your help
    – Nick
    Oct 26, 2015 at 4:26
  • I had the same problem. The service center person said they'd have to clean and adjust the insides of the carburettor and also clean the engine cylinder head and change the engine oil because of carbon deposits. The labour charge was rather expensive, but after servicing, the bike responsiveness is just too good. A mechanic also told me that repeatedly trying to start the bike when the spark plug is flooded, could severely damage the engine valve. If there's anyone who could confirm these or mention anything, please do.
    – Nav
    Dec 25, 2015 at 14:53

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