No headlights... not the sub harness... ECU?!?!

Brick

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#1
Well my 2012 Super Tenere' while having been the bike of my dreams... just love this thing has perhaps taken a dump.
First of all I've got over 50,000 miles and this is the only real problem... yea I had to replace a battery just after the warranty went out (and no Yamaha wouldn't cover it) and I have had to put a second set of rear brake pads on and lots of tires (to be expected :) ). I also have replaced both H7 headlights... with ordinary H7's. Nothing else.

So here it is. I rode from my home in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina (USA) to Orlando, Fl to work the AIMExpo a couple of weeks ago. On the ride down all on back roads I ended up getting there just after the sun set... my headlights were like non-existent as in I only had the running lights. Well I made it to my friends house. A quick check revealed that it was not a fuse and not the bulbs. I had no real way to work on it down there and we had no time to work on it as in the AM we had to get to the show. Worked the show for 5 days and during that time I did communicate with Greg as in "Greg the pole" aka The Tenerist about my "problem". Not having the bike with me at the show I was not really able to test some of Greg's suggestions to see if I did indeed have a cooked wiring sup harness. As I needed to get home I rode home on the interstate with no headlights just to be sure to get home before dark.

As I started to attempt to diagnose the problem I replaced the headlight relay... which didn't fix the problem... I ordered a new (updated Yamaha P/N) sub harness... which didn't fix the problem. So last night with some help from a friend who is a MC mechanic we traced it back to the ECU.... YES, the $817,17 ECU!!! :-[ It seems that the headlight relay gets it's ground from the ECU... well it's supposed to but my ECU doesn't seem to be providing this ground to activate the relay. we tested everything from the ECU to the bulbs and all is OK there.
So I need/want to do one thing that I didn't do last night... hook the ECU back up and the relay and plug in the headlights... start the bike and then provide the ground to the relay to see if all works that way. I feel strongly that it will work and that I'll still be left with an ECU that's not working properly.
NOW some additional questions:

1) no warranty... ::024::( only time in my life I'm thinking I should have gotten the extended waranty!) what's the chances that Yamaha will step up to make this right?

2) can the ECU be A) checked to see it all else is working properly? B) can the ECU be re flashed and thus fixed?

3) Can the ECU be fixed? (reprogrammed?)

Ok... once those questions are answered... I will most likely hook up another relay, likely through my FZ1 (fuse box) to provide the ground the headlights need after the bike starts to light the headlights and live with it.

I was planning a ride out to CA and to ride Baja, Mexico again in February... would you trust this bike with the fix around the ECU?

This sucks! :'( :'( :'( Damn, I wanna ride this bike... while at the AIMExpo I bought new Trax bags in black and Denali D2 lights for it too...
 

snakebitten

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#2
While I agree it sucks if the ECU is unable to provide the ground, it sucks even more that you don't have YES.
(YES costs less than the ECU)

However, your remedy sounds solid to me. Why would you be concerned with "trusting" direct wiring?
Sounds more reliable than OEM to me.
 

avc8130

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#3
Try gounding the headlight relay directly. If that works, then you know the problem is with the ground getting to the relay.

If you are SURE it is the ECU, try giving Chris at Flash Tune a call and see if he has any advice.

The ground on the ECU is the black wire in the bottom corner of the small connector. Check that for continuity to the battery negative FROM THE ECU SIDE OF THE CONNECTOR.

ac
 

Brick

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#4
UPDATE... just spoke with my MC mechanic buddy who says, that he has been thinking about this since last night when we were working on it.
He says that we need to find out what tells the ECU that the bike is now running so it's ok to provide this ground and turn the headlights on. Perhaps there is something else not sending this signal to the ECU!?!? And that we need to ask Yamaha for more information... where to look? Is there a switch or something that is not telling the ECU to provide this output to turn the lights on?

I think there was a 800 number somewhere to get to a technical person with Yamaha to assist with this... who's got that number handy?

I know what I'll be doing on Monday... calling Yamaha to get some more information.
 

avc8130

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#5
There are a few things that could "tell" the ECU the bike is running, but I think if any of them weren't working you would get a CEL or other warning light.

Think:
Cam Position Sensor
Oil Pressure Switch

Do you have the FSM?

ac
 

fredz43

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#6
One of the two unused aux plugs located near the tool kit storage area has a circuit that is only energized once the engine is running. I tapped into it to trigger my relay for my heated vest. It might be worthwhile to test it to see if it is being energized once the engine starts.
 

greg the pole

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#7
Brick,
as per our emails, first thing is to ask everyone to chime in that has had this problem. Hell, i'm bored, so I'll start it for you.

When you call Yamaha and inform them that you and no one else has it, they will not listen.
OTOH if you call them, and tell them that you and 40 other members have had a similar issue, they will listen. Besides, they upgraded the sub harness, but will not tell you that, unless you show then that you did your homework.
Trust me, no one likes bad publicity.

looking at the blog post http://thetenerist.wordpress.com/2013/10/01/tenere-headlight-issue-clarification/
it had 400 views. So either guys look there to check an existing problem, or they are just finding out about it.
I found it by fluke when I was installing my HID lights, and remedied the problem, by only using the signal wire to drive my own relay. That and a dedicated ground.

Failing that, you need to get all your wires checked first.

Ground the relay when the bike is running, and see if it:
a: pulls in
b: lights turn on
c: eliminate all possibilities, and try to narrow it down to one part/wire.

The original ground going to the harness is too small. Check that the ground on the harness side makes it all the way back to the battery without high resistance. Just because the rest of the components work (marker lights, high beam solenoid/relay) that the wire is sound.

This is all caused by the wires being undersized. I would dig there first before pointing fingers at the ecu, as it's a highly unlikely failure. As AC pointed out, you would have a trouble light of some sort on your dash.
As far as a signal that the ecu receives? well it will be an input from one of the sensor, which then gets delayed by a second or two, then in turn gives you an output to your relay ground.

good luck.
 

Big Blu

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#11
Sorry to hear about your issue Brick..

Yamaha Customer Relations number is 800-962-7926, that'll be Cindy.
She'll more then likely transfer the call to a product specialist, that'll be Carman.

Nice people indeed.

REGARDS, Paul
 

Tremor38

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#13
avc8130 said:
Try gounding the headlight relay directly. If that works, then you know the problem is with the ground getting to the relay.

If you are SURE it is the ECU, try giving Chris at Flash Tune a call and see if he has any advice.

The ground on the ECU is the black wire in the bottom corner of the small connector. Check that for continuity to the battery negative FROM THE ECU SIDE OF THE CONNECTOR.

ac
If the ECU was not getting a ground from the battery, there would be a much bigger problem..as in the bike not running. :D The yellow/black wire coming from the ecu supplies a ground the headlight relay. You would have to check that for a ground with the engine running. This is assuming that they have already checked for continuity from the relay coil to the ECU connector's yellow/black wire.
 

Don in Lodi

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#14
I'm with your tech, check the ecm inputs. As noted though, an important enough sensor should set a code. Not having YES, I like the long term fix of a hard ground that was mentioned. Should probably remove the ecm's dead ground from the circuit.
Hmm, aux line bat+, gotta check that relay's ground trigger if it's going hot. A second ecm driver, or the same dead one?
 

Rasher

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#15
Could just hardwire a good old fashioned on / off switch for the lights ::008::
 

Brick

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#16
Yes, we checked continuity from relay to ECU's yellow/black wire... it's OK. Yes we checked for a ground with the engine running. At this point what we didn't do that I would like to do is have the bike running and provide our own ground to the relay to see if we get lights. That would tell me a couple of things... 1) I can easily add a switch here or 2) a relay from another trigger.

I intend on calling Yamaha's Tech line... the number that Paul gave me... after they open this AM... 11AM eastern time and see what they say. As in what might not be telling the ECU to output this ground to turn on the lights.

I will keep you all informed and Thanks for the input.
Brick

Tenerator12 said:
If the ECU was not getting a ground from the battery, there would be a much bigger problem..as in the bike not running. :D The yellow/black wire coming from the ecu supplies a ground the headlight relay. You would have to check that for a ground with the engine running. This is assuming that they have already checked for continuity from the relay coil to the ECU connector's yellow/black wire.
 

Brick

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#17
So today I called the Yamaha Customer Relations 800 number that Paul gave me. They are very nice and I was transferred to a product specialist who immediately admitted that this was NOT a Technical Service help line but that he would do his best.
Bradley talked me through all the items I have already checked. Then he went and got the wiring schematic and attempted to help me. He could not determine what other sensors or switches I should check to see if they were giving the ECU the proper signal to tell the ECU to output to the headlight relay. He then said that the best advice he could give me was to take it to a dealer for them to diagnose. OR... to get a good known ECU and try it in my bike to see if then my headlights worked that way. Hmmm.... that is good advice. Except if I had one I would have already done that.
However, I do have a close friend who has a Super Tenere' AND I'm gonna put some Anakee 3's on his bike this week. So I spoke with him today and he said yes to try his ECU in my bike. ::008:: Excellent I'll be doing that.

I also phoned the shop where I purchased my bike and asked to a technician that was recommended to me by a knowledgeable friend. This technician suggested that we look a bit harder at the schematic and then to check the engine start button... apparently he has recently had some of the newer Honda's have a bad wire there that allows the headlights to come on "after you let up on the start button". Now this sounds good but Honda's headlights come on when you turn on the key and then as the start button is pushed the head lights go out while the starter is starting the bike. Thus when the button is let go the lights go back on. Button is not completely returning to the on position.
Also to look to see if an engine RPM sensor is needed to tell the ECU to send the ground to the headlight relay. Hmmm.... not sure how we can do that plus if it were defective wouldn't that give a "code".

So at least I can change the ECU with my friend Chris's Super Tenere'.

Wish me luck... ::26:: ::26:: ::26:: I wanna ride I wanna ride!

PS: I also got an email address of the District Sales Mgr and asked him for the contact information for the SE Region Service Mgr. Couldn't hurt to talk with him... ::003::
 

Brick

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#18
Well I just took the ECU out of my buddy Chris's Tenere and put it in my Tenere and my headlights work just fine! Sooo that and all the other checks that I did tells me the my ECU is not putting out the necessary ground to close the relay to power my lights after the bike starts.
At least now I know... but it also tells me that I either get a new ECU or go around it and put either a switch to turn the lights on or a relay to turn the lights on (which is just an electronic switch).
However my dealer has sent a request for assistance (goodwill assistance) from Yamaha regarding my ECU.
I got the bike October 19, 2011 and have over 50,000 miles so it's not in warranty. :-/
He said he should hear back Monday afternoon possibly late. So I should know either Monday late or Tuesday.
I've also got a call out to a Yamaha Southeast District Sales Mgr.
Wish me luck.


Brick
 

fredz43

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#19
Brick said:
Well I just took the ECU out of my buddy Chris's Tenere and put it in my Tenere and my headlights work just fine! Sooo that and all the other checks that I did tells me the my ECU is not putting out the necessary ground to close the relay to power my lights after the bike starts.
At least now I know... but it also tells me that I either get a new ECU or go around it and put either a switch to turn the lights on or a relay to turn the lights on (which is just an electronic switch).
However my dealer has sent a request for assistance (goodwill assistance) from Yamaha regarding my ECU.
I got the bike October 19, 2011 and have over 50,000 miles so it's not in warranty. :-/
He said he should hear back Monday afternoon possibly late. So I should know either Monday late or Tuesday.
I've also got a call out to a Yamaha Southeast District Sales Mgr.
Wish me luck.


Brick
Ok, I will. Good luck with that, Brick!
 
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