Minor setback — battery at 0% this morning

Dunno what happened, but I found the battery reporting empty after it had reported itself at 100% after charging last night. I was able to ride it up a short hill above my house and back again (no way I wanted to strand the bike down a steep hill and not be able to roll it back again), but putting it back in the garage to charge showed that the battery was starting from zero and climbing.

After three hours of recharging, the bike again reported 100%, so I took it uphill again and found that it was keeping a charge better.  By then, it was dark, and I was going to be late for Thanksgiving dinner with my parents, so I just put it back on the charger overnight.

Hopefully, tomorrow morning the bike will be at a real 100% charge, and not dropping to zero for some reason.  That said, I would hate to have to leave the bike plugged in all night just to guarantee that the battery won’t be flat in the morning.  What confidence would I have that the battery would have any charge left to get me home again after work?

Timeline of symptoms:

  • Received the scooter about two weeks ago with what looked like a 72-75% charge.  Scooter arrived with both circuit breaker and master switch turned off, as is recommended by the Owner’s Manual for long-term storage.
  • Turned on the circuit breaker first, then the master switch in order to ride it around the neighborhood for about 10 minutes that day, still reporting about 70% charge, then turned both circuit breaker and master switch off again.  Note that at this point, I had no Owner’s Manual to explain the proper procedure for powering up the scooter, so I had no idea that the switches should be turned on in the opposite order, or that a pause of 10-20 seconds or more is recommended between turning on the master power switch and the circuit breaker.  Turned both off again after the ride.
  • Waited two weeks for paperwork to be acceptable to the DOL.  Did not turn on circuit breaker or master switch during this time.
  • Charged it last night to what it reported to be 100%.  With the Owner’s Manual in hand, I finally followed the correct power-on sequence.
  • Turned on the master power switch followed by the circuit breaker in preparation for riding the scooter around noon.  Looked at the battery readout on the dashboard to see it report 0%.
  • Rode it up a nearby hill anyway just in case the readout was just being slow to initialize, but found the motor handling the hill a little weakly even from a running start (admittedly in the low power setting).
  • Rode it back downhill into the garage and plugged it back in.
  • 3 hours later, the dashboard reports the battery at 100%.
  • Rode it back up the same hill as before, and the battery drops to only 99%–rode it another mile or so and back home and the battery drops to only 94-96%, so it is a relief to see it not report 0% right out of the driveway.
  • Plugged it back in and will leave it plugged in until I leave tomorrow on a gentle ride to lunch at the Hitching Post Café in Monroe, 9 miles away on flat land.  If the battery fails this test, it is going to be difficult to rely on the battery readout or have confidence in this vehicle as my daily commute 13 miles, uphill (and downhill) each way without knowing what’s really happening to the battery and the readout.

[Updated a number of times to supply more detail that Current Motor might find helpful for troubleshooting.]

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This entry was posted in Concern, Current Motor, Motorcycle, Problem report, Recharging, Riding and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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