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Old Oct 10th, 2006, 3:27 am
cavscout's Avatar
cavscout cavscout is offline
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Monterey, CA, USA
Posts: 14
Brake Failure Light Flashing

This is my first trip here as I just unloaded my R1200C for a 2002 K1200RS, and something is going on with the bike I am not sure about...when I turn the key and the self-diagnostics start running the 'brake failure' light flashes rapidly and does not transition to flashing slowly, and ultimately does not stop flashing at all. Once I start the bike I have almost no brakes. In order to fix this I need to let the bike warm up a bit, turn it off, then restart - only when the engine is warm will the 'brake failure' light flash slowly and then turn off as the brakes are ready for use. I am thinking maybe a fuse, but since I am new to the bike I wanted to seek others' opinions.


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Old Oct 10th, 2006, 5:08 am
larrykay's Avatar
larrykay larrykay is offline
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: New Rochelle , NY, USA
Posts: 1,387
It seems as if the brake fluid may need to be topped off as the "failure" seems to end with the warming up of the bike. I had the same problem after the local dealer flushed my system on my 2002KRS. All it needed was a very small amount of brake fluid. be careful putting it in as it is very corrosive to paint.
Deep Blue 2009 K1300GT
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Old Oct 10th, 2006, 2:37 pm
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Bobmws Bobmws is offline
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Astatula, FL, USA
Posts: 589
With regard to Larrykay's post, the rear brake reservoir has been known to give this indication if it is low.
There is also the possibility that your battery is marginal, and the initial voltage after startup is not high enough to complete the ABS system checks. The fact that it resets after the bike is warmed up indicates the battery has regained some charge.
If you have a charger, try plugging the battery in overnight, and see if the condition repeats itself at the next startup. If all indicators clear, I would guess the battery is the culprit. I would have the battery checked at the dealer. 4 years on a BMW battery is pretty much it's lifespan.
Bob Weis
Astatula, FL
'74 R90S '04 K12RS
You rarely see a motorcycle parked outside a psychiatrist's office......
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Old Oct 10th, 2006, 7:20 pm
cavscout's Avatar
cavscout cavscout is offline
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Monterey, CA, USA
Posts: 14

Larry and Bob,

Thanks for the ideas you provided, checked them all and still the same problem. I was looking at the BMW MOA site and someone had a similar problem, another rider suggested it could be the contacts and to lift up on the rear brake foot lever and push the front brake lever away from the handlebars....for some reason this has fixed the problem, now I just need to figure out why and what tiny little part I need to clean.

Thanks again
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Old Nov 9th, 2006, 5:02 am
voxmagna voxmagna is offline
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: , , UK
Posts: 3,734
Flashing ABS lights and Winter arriving = Battery.

Crank the bike over whilst measuring the battery voltage at the terminals or accessory plug. If the voltage drop is more than 2-3 volts, get the battery charged and repeat. Leave the battery standing or put it in the fridge for several hours and repeat. If the same reading, then buy a new battery.

When you crank the bike the ABS will lock out if it sees a large voltage drop. Once the bike has run, the battery voltage comes up, which is why your ABS is normal after a warm start. This is entirely logical since the ABS system needs to know your battery can drive the ABS motors when needed under braking decel. (alternator low output).

When the bike has been left standing and cold, your ABS warning lights become your 'battery condition monitor'. That's more useful than a BMW service light, which only dealers can reset!
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