98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power
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  1. #1
    PWCToday Guru Rconce01's Avatar
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    98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power

    Looking for some advice I did a ton or research and I cant find a solution.

    1. Lately my ski started doing this issue where it wont crank continuously. Checked the battery voltage, and its strong, the cables are good and the on off switch as well as the solenoid are good. Ive narrowed the problem down to the signal form the MPEM to the solenoid. It will crank 2 secs or 1 stop then crank then stop then crank then stop. It almost appears as if the MPEM thinks its running and stops cranking then realizes its not on and keeps cranking. I read on the forum a guy that had a similar issue and when the mag housing plug is disconnected the ski cranks continuously with out skipping at at. In his case the issue was he had the 99 and up magneto cup with the 4 magnets versus 2 so his 98 would almost detect twice the trigger signal causing the computer to think it started. Mine has the correct 2 magnet cup. I went ahead a pulled the mag housing off cleaned the mag cup and replaced the magneto and pickup coil with another one that works good form another ski and i have the same cranking problem. Despite this erratic cranking i do get it to turn on.

    2. When i put the key in i get the two beeps followed by a long 3 sec continuous beep, once it running of just with the key one this long 3 sec continuous beep occurs every 2-5 minutes. Annoying as heck and i dont know what it means. I put it into diagnostic mode were you press the start stop 5 times continuously gave me the short beep and long beep confirmation and the normal 2 beeps when you put the key on.

    3. This is the real problem. The ski will start up fine and run in the water but after about 30 min it will die. fuel is not the issue the spark just gets extremely weak to the point it barely idles and then it has to be towed. I figured the issue was a bad coil that would fail once it ran for while and i replaced the coil and cables as well as the plugs and i have the same issue it will run them die after like 30 minutes.

    Im not sure if 1 and 2 are related to #3 since the ski has had issue #1 and #2 for a while without the #3 issue I got recently.

    I checked the MPEM and the plugs are clean and fuses are good except the VTS fuse is blown. Will a bad Vts or blown fuse cause issue #3?

  2. #2
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    Re: 98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power

    Did you ever figure out why your ski was losing power? I have a 2000 RX with the 951 carb engine, and the same thing is happening to me. I've been through the whole fuel system, carbs, etc. Just replace the stator and trigger coil, but that didn't fix the problem. My ignition coils tested fine with my multimeter.

    I'm at a loss at to what's happening. Was running perfects just a few weeks ago.

  3. #3
    PWCToday Guru Rconce01's Avatar
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    Re: 98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power

    Quote Originally Posted by NCGator25 View Post
    Did you ever figure out why your ski was losing power? I have a 2000 RX with the 951 carb engine, and the same thing is happening to me. I've been through the whole fuel system, carbs, etc. Just replace the stator and trigger coil, but that didn't fix the problem. My ignition coils tested fine with my multimeter.

    I'm at a loss at to what's happening. Was running perfects just a few weeks ago.
    No not yet. I ran series of tests. Trigger coil resistance and it's good. Dynamic test voltage on trigger coil is also good. The part where is got weird is the voltage at the white wire for the coil primary. It's supposed to be 28v DC and I'm getting negative -38v DC. This is a 98 GSX L with the single coil. Your 2000RX has dual coils. What's the voltage at your primary trigger coil wire for each coil when it runs good and when it dies off. I have yet to measure mine when it dies. Also make sure your grounds under the pipe are good. Does your crank normal?IMG_20220906_200042_545.jpg
    Last edited by Rconce01; 09-12-2022 at 12:05 AM.

  4. #4
    PWCToday.com Is My Home Away From Home WFO Speedracer's Avatar
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    Re: 98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power

    It may be nothing but do a voltage check on the battery to see if it is charging or not then when it dies out check it again, if the rectifier is bad and leaking AC voltage back into the system it could cause this, I belive the rectifier is made into the MPEM on these but there is a way to bypass it and wire in an external regulator, 30 minutes is about the run time of a ski that the charging system is not charging on starts acting up. That negative voltage indicates the prescense of AC voltage in the syatem.
    Y'all know me, still the same O.G. but I been low-key
    hated on by most these &^$$@s with no cheese, no deals and no G's, no wheels and no keys, no boats, no snowmobiles, and no skis, mad at me cause I can finally afford to provide my family with groceries

    WWSRD , What would Speed Racer do ?

  5. #5
    PWCToday Guru Rconce01's Avatar
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    Re: 98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power

    Quote Originally Posted by WFO Speedracer View Post
    It may be nothing but do a voltage check on the battery to see if it is charging or not then when it dies out check it again, if the rectifier is bad and leaking AC voltage back into the system it could cause this, I belive the rectifier is made into the MPEM on these but there is a way to bypass it and wire in an external regulator, 30 minutes is about the run time of a ski that the charging system is not charging on starts acting up. That negative voltage indicates the prescense of AC voltage in the syatem.
    Great advice thanks. I will try that and report back. The battery so far doesn't die it allows plenty of power for cranking even after the ski starts dying.

  6. #6
    PWCToday.com Is My Home Away From Home WFO Speedracer's Avatar
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    Re: 98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power

    I have experienced this on a 951 yet but have many times on a 787, it's more about the AC voltage being introduced into the DC system and making the ignition go haywire than the charging of the battery.
    Y'all know me, still the same O.G. but I been low-key
    hated on by most these &^$$@s with no cheese, no deals and no G's, no wheels and no keys, no boats, no snowmobiles, and no skis, mad at me cause I can finally afford to provide my family with groceries

    WWSRD , What would Speed Racer do ?

  7. #7
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    Re: 98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power

    I replaced my trigger coil and stator as I had two people think the stator was the issue after describing the issue. One is a guy that has his own business, the other was a dealer. Since I replaced those items, I'm still having the issue. This is the update I provided to a Facebook group on the issues I'm having.


    9-13-22 UPDATE: Here's what I've done to the ski since this thread was started on Sunday.

    1) Replaced the fuel vent lines and ensured both of the check valves are working.
    2) Disconnected every electrical connection I could fine and sprayed electric contact cleaner on all of them. There was quite a bit of old dielectric grease in them. I didn't put new grease on any of them b/c I wanted to make sure I'm getting a good connection.
    3) Took an eraser tip to the surface of the key and dess post. Saw that trick online.

    I took the ski on the water today and it’s still not running. After getting the ski warmed up a bit, I did several passes back and forth outside the no wake zone. The ski was running well, so I opened it up and went full throttle. After a couple of passes, the ski died on me. This felt like a fuel issue the way it died, but it fired right back up.

    Instead of heading in, I decided to stay out and continue to run it. It ran great for several more passes, even a couple at full throttle. Then, it cut off on me. This time is struggled to cut back on. I open the fuel cap, no change in the way the motor was running. I couldn’t get the engine above 2000 rpm. If I let off on the throttle, the end would die. It was also difficult to start at this point, as if the battery was dead. Very weak starting, and thought I was going to have to paddle back it. I headed into the boat ramp. The engine was sputtering the whole way back. Seemed like it was almost in a limp mode. Lots of shaking at the low rpm too.

    All of these took place over roughly a 20 minute timeframe. Tested the battery when I got home and it’s showing 13 amps. I still think it’s some kind of electrical issue. The rectifier seems to be working in the garage on the multimeter, but maybe it’s failing on the water.

  8. #8
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    Re: 98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power

    WFO, I'm starting to wonder if it's my rectifier too. I've tested it in the garage with my multimeter hooked to the battery. Battery reads 13v in the off position, 13.5 or so when the engine is running. I rev'd the engine to 5000rpms the other day, and it climbed to just above 14v, but didn't go above 15v. I've read if it goes above 15v, the rectifier is bad. Mine doesn't seem to be doing.

    I've also tested my ignition coils both cold and warmed to roughly 150 degrees, and they both tested within spec.

  9. #9
    PWCToday.com Is My Home Away From Home WFO Speedracer's Avatar
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    Re: 98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power

    I am not quite sure how to isolate this on a GSXL on a 787 it's easy just unplug the red wire on the rectifier, on a GSXL you would have to find that wire going back to charge the battery and remove it from the plug and see if it fixes your problem.
    Y'all know me, still the same O.G. but I been low-key
    hated on by most these &^$$@s with no cheese, no deals and no G's, no wheels and no keys, no boats, no snowmobiles, and no skis, mad at me cause I can finally afford to provide my family with groceries

    WWSRD , What would Speed Racer do ?

  10. #10
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    Re: 98 GSXL Intermittent start cycling / loss of power

    Yeah, I'm not sure it can be bypassed since it's built into the MPEM. I may buy the external rectifier and harness from OSD Parts if it seems that's the likely culprit.

    The battery I'm using was a replacement Duracell Ultra battery from Batteries Plus. I put it on the ski at the beginning of the summer, but I may take it in to have them test it. I want to rule it out as the culprit. It would be hard to believe I got two bad batteries in a row, but I guess it's possible.

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