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So i am new to motorcycles and dont know a whole ton about them. I bought a 2000 Yamaha V-star 650 classic and have discovered a problem with how it starts. It doesn't have a problem running at all, its just when its off for a while, sometimes as little as 20 minutes, i have to crank the starter for a long time before the engine will start up. The guy that sold me the bike told me that i have to turn off the pepcock everytime i turn off the bike. When i do, it makes it a little easier to start the bike but not always. Im just not sure where to start into fixing it. Any Ideas?
 

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Assuming you are choking it correctly, I would start with the battery. You have to have over 12 volts from your battery for the starter to actually start the bike. Anything less, the starter just spins. Hook some jumper cables to it, from a good battery, and see if it starts any easier. If that works, you need a new battery. If that doesn't work, it could be a myriad of other things. Spark plugs, carburetor may need to be cleaned, or may have a vacuum leak. I would put about 4 ounces of Seafoam per tankfull of gas for the next couple of fill-ups, sure wont hurt anything. Seafoam is like magic in a bottle for fuel systems. When I bought my wife her 650 this past March, a new battery fixed what sounds like this same problem.
 

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try turning off the petcock before you stop the engine - let the float bowls drain down a bit.

If the float bowls are sticking open and flooding the engine they should also be overflowing gas on the engine case, on the right side, between the cylinders, right onto the top of the engine case.

Ditto the SeaFoam recommendation: Walmart auto fluids shelf, about $10 for a pint.
 

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It sounds to me like your petcock and float valves are leaking a little and flooding the bowls and intake. What are your starting procedures with a cold motor and when fully warmed?
 

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^ a couple people are questioning how you are starting the bike.

When its over-night cold and its below 50F outside pull the choke out all the way - when its 70F pull it out maybe 1/3rd to halfway - if its hot outside (80F in the morning..) you may not need to use the choke at all, esp if the bike has been sitting in the sunlight.

When the bike has been run recently you do not use the choke at all. That could be as much as 4 hours of sitting on a hot day.

Also when you start the bike, with the choke in the morning, or without the choke when the motor is hot, dont give it any throttle while you crank it. Once it fires you can give the throttle a burp after you let go of the starter button.

If you open the throttle while you are trying to start it, the mixture is wrong for the speed the motor is cranking over, and it will just flood.
 

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I agree with KCW on all above points except one... if you hold the throttle open while cranking the starter this will actually help clear a flooded motor and give the wrong impression that the motor is starving for fuel which is not the case and only applies with pumper carbs which the 650 does not have. Either way if your carbs are properly dialed in you should never need to touch the throttle during start up.
 
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