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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello everyone,

I am Cosmin from Romania and as a future K1300GT owner, I started doing my homeworks, reading tens of pages about issues and solutions/workarounds. I like to know in advance what I might face in my trips and what solutions to apply but especially to take some preventive actions in order to avoid the unexpected when I am far away from home. Unfortunately I haven't found a page with all the K1300GT widely known issues and solutions, so I tried to centralize them in a list:

1) Hot start issue - faced by most owner after a gas stop - workaround is wait at least 15mins for bike to cool down a little. Possible causes and solutions:
a) under-dimensioned battery to starter wire which after heating changes its resistance and prevents the start. Solution: retrofit kit/supplemental harness code 16148549916 or 12418532735; sometimes a new improved starter relay is installed also
b) in some cases a new battery solves the issue (mainly a specific Odissey model)
c) some say latest ECU software solves or helps in solving it
d) others claim it's related to fuel quality; better fuel and cleaning (in the service) the throttle bodies/flaps

2) cam chain issues:
a) possible jump of chain could destroy the engine; a plastic jump-guard needs to be installed PLUS the re-designed tensioner;
b) another issue related to the 'gear which begins to come off the end of the cam and the cam mechanism falls apart due to a broken flange that the gear bolts onto' - is this so common, any workaround?!

3) Idle stall or during gear down-shift - solutions:
a) ECU software update - unfortunatelly this affects severely the engine braking :(
b) better fuel and cleaning (in the service) the throttle bodies/flaps
c) throttle sensor recalibration

4) Fuel leakage:
a) install new fuel pump flange (in some cases even new pump)
b) reinforce the old model fuel flange (DIY work)

5) Rear wheel aluminium flange cracks due to bolts over-tighten:
a) install new steel flange
b) keep using the aluminium one if it's in good state but carefully tighten bolts with dialed wrench and use locking compounds (although I think I read somewhere that Loctite does not get along well with aluminium)

6) Famous handlebar switches: failed left one won't allow using the indicators, winshield adjustment, cruise-control etc; when the right one fails the engine won't start.
a) apparently the issues are caused by some resin (which seals/isolates the 2 overlapped PCBs inside the switch) which melts after bike stayed too much in direct sun on a hot day - in some cases it helped to take the bike away from direct sun for some time. This also sounds similar to issue 1) - don't know if in case 1) the starter is activated but too 'weak' and in case 5) the starter is not engaged at all?! On-the-spot workaround is push-start the bike. Permanent solution - switches replacement.

7) sidecases - retaining straps on the pannier cover get weak and allow the cover to touch the ground after opening. A cable tie in the hole where the plastic tab goes will help in preventing the issue.

8) Final drive bearings failure:
a) final drive assembly replacement (very expensive)
b) final drive rebuild (some did it DIY successfully)

8) Brake fluid foaming issues (don't have too many details) - there is a recall for this also

9) clutch issues 'expensive to solve' - details here would be welcome

10) Stuck fuel gauge - fuel strip installation solves it?!

11) throttle on-off jerkiness (general issue faced by most modern fuel-injected bikes) - easily solved by installing booster-plug or similar devices.

I'm kindly asking the more experienced forum member to correct whatever was misundertood and wrongly written above or if in some cases new solutions were identified meanwhile and also add new issues which might have been identified as common K1300GT model issues. I'm currently riding a Yamah FJR1300 which served me flawlessly in the past 64.000 miles (all maintenance was DIY) but I would love the GT for improved performance, handling, wind/weather protection etc. Though I want to know in advance what I'm getting myself into, that's why I'm a little bit cautios about these issues.

Many thanks in advance.

21 Posts
I have 62,000 km on my 2006 K1200 GT over 8 years and have some familiarity with the issues listed.

No hot start issues at all, although a hot, weak battery can leave you stranded after a long high speed ride if the engine stalls. Happened to me at an autostrada toll gate.

Cam chain tensioner and chain jump guard at crank sprocket are advisable (and free under warranty). The main issue (my guess) is that the tensioner loses tension when the engine gets hot and the oil thins. Such as after a highway ride when in traffic. Use good oil, proper weight. Change at proper intervals.

Only idle problem I am aware of is the air bypass valve in the airbox. It is a poor fit and sticks either leaving the idle high or stalling the bike. After 62,000 km mine has worn a bit so it no longer sticks and the idle is ok. Search online for the airbox fix.

Had the pump flange recall performed but never had any fuel leaks.

Get the steel rear wheel flange! The original part cracks too easily. If the dealer even sees it on your bike during a service he will not let you leave without changing it! BMW Milano may have saved me a crash as mine was badly cracked when they replaced it. The recall is free.

Never had any handlebar switch issues. Bike is in the Italian sun a lot.

Side cases - my left one is scratched badly. Thanks for the idea!

No final drive, fuel gauge or brake fluid foaming issues. I change final drive oil at 10,000 km and service the brakes (new fluid) at dealer specified intervals.

Clutch is weak and under lubricated by oil flow. The worn clutch material is not washed away during use and eventually the build up causes a screech. Mine lasted 60,000 km but much was highway km. I just changed it, the price was just under €600 but the new clutch pack includes everything. If you ride in the city a lot expect shorter life. I have never replaced a clutch before on any bike in many years so I think I am gentle on them generally.

Problems I have had include coils - I dropped a cylinder in northern France on a holiday at 50,000 km. I ended up replacing all 4 coils ($$) as once one goes, how long until the next?

The brake power booster pump can fail. Scary to ride without brake power assist if you are at the top of the Stelvio.

The brushes in the pump motor can carbon up (heat in city traffic?). Mine stopped working once in a Madrid rush hour. Once the bike cooled down it was ok; never had an issue in the 2 years since. There are people who can rebuild them at a fraction of the OEM cost.

The seat is mediocre (too soft). The touratech one is excellent. The rubber bushings which the the front of the rider seat rests on can tear which makes the seat crooked and feel unattached to the bike when riding.

The centre stand breaks where the foot lever joins the stand. A bit of a pain, I think the 1300s had a redesigned unit.

Change the tiny air filter frequently. I ride in the spring a lot and the thing gets filled with all types of plant matter which floats in the air. Bike runs better after changing it.

Gearshift is clunky. Especially from neutral to 1st gear. Not much can be done.

The bike eats brake pads and tires. Especially rear pads even though I never use the pedal (linked brakes?)

Other than that, the thing is fast, comfortable, smooth and reliable. But at 259kg dry, not agile. Quick directions are not easy. It lives for the autobahn; I would never buy it if I lived somewhere with significant speed limit enforcement.

Good luck with the purchase. I considered a FJR before getting the K but liked the BMW dealer support network when far from home. So far, so good.
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