Harley-Davidson Sportster Motorcycles from 1986 to Present.

26 Questions View all

Clicks when trying to start does not engage.

I have a Harley-Davidson 1999 sportster 1200. I get a hard fast clicking sound when trying to start. I Have put the battery on a charger and let it charge overnight. It still does the same thing. Is this a bad battery? I left it hooked up to the charger and tried to start with the charger in start mode and still just clicking sound.

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

Is this a good question?

Score 4


Hard fast clicking is starter motor below its full voltage, best charger to have is a optimate 3 or above,this will desulvate your battery,charge it,and be fully charge by morning,I have a optimate3 and a yellow gel battery.I plug my in after every ride,and mine fires first time everytime.


Add a comment

4 Answers

Chosen Solution

Like he said, most likely is your battery. However, when the hold in coil is out on the starter solenoid it will do the same thing that you are just describing. In that case you need a new starter motor or you could try to rebuild your solenoid. The starter motor and is very easy to swap out. First, disconnect your battery. Do not skip this step. Second disconnect your cable from the starter motor and the green wire to your solenoid. Third, remove your primary cover (follow the step-by-step instructions in your manual)

Fourth, remove the compensating sprocket nut and clutch hub lock ring. Your primary chain should be loose by now from when you removed the primary cover.

Fifth, remove the two starter mounting bolts, should be 5/16 Allen bolts and remove the starter.

You can bench test the battery by using a known good battery hooking up positive to the starter copper post and the battery positive post then negative to the starter case, I usually clamp the jumper cable to the mounting bolt ear. Then get a jumper wire, 18 gauge or bigger and touch one end to the copper starter post(or the battery (+)post and the other side momentarily touch the spade connector on the solenoid ( where the green wire connects to) hold the starter firmly because it will jump. The starter will either push the jack shaft out and spin (then the starter is good )or the jackshaft will click in and out rapidly and then you'll know it's the solenoid hold in coil.

But it's probably just the battery.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 3


What is the holding coil?


Add a comment

Linduy, Clean and tighten all connections from battery to the starter and all grounds, as this can be a big issue on bikes. Have battery tested at auto parts store, a lot offer free battery testing and can give you print out of the status on battery. If connections and wires(positive and negative) all look good then it is probably time to check and rebuild/replace solenoid. Good luck.

I hope this helped you out, if so let me know by pressing the helpful button.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 2
Add a comment

It sounds like there not enough powering the starter motor..

This has happened me a few times when I haven't started my bike in a while, it normally works fine when I start it while it's charging..

I reckon you need a new battery..

Good luck

Was this answer helpful?

Score 1
Add a comment

Battery was old and not enough voltage to engage the starter, even while placing the old battery on a charger overnight. Constant "quick clicking sound" even while still hooked to the charger and trying to start it. Thought that it should have at least started while connected to the charger. Getting a new battery fixed the issue instantaneously. Starts like new again.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 0


Help I .replaced the battery but when I try to start my 2009 streetbob it just clicks


Add a comment

Add your answer

Linduy will be eternally grateful.
View Statistics:

Past 24 Hours: 106

Past 7 Days: 798

Past 30 Days: 3,662

All Time: 27,218