Sportster Will Not Start

Question My Sportster will not start. It gets fire to the front cylinder but not the back and does not change fire from front to rear when turning the engine over. It would kick last week but now does nothing please help. It is a 1993 5 speed.

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If your Sportster will not start CHECK: proper voltage to the coil.
Spark plug condition/gap
Condition of plug wires
Condition of battery
Test for spark on front & rear cylinders.
If you only have spark on the front cylinder, swap plug wires (front to rear, rear to front ). Now see if you (only) have spark on the rear cylinder.
If you do not have power to the coil; Use a small jumper wire and power your coil directly from the battery. This will will bypass your harness and switches.
If this gives you proper voltage/spark, you need to repair a dead short or break somewhere in your wiring harness.
If you have a Tachometer, disconnect it. A bad tach can interrupt proper coil function.

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11 Responses to “Sportster Will Not Start”
  1. Vicente

    Hello my problem is don’t start gas leaks on the bottom of the carburetor . There is a pipe on the left don’t no if it’s a over flow .

    • Customer Service Techs
      Customer Service Techs

      We would be happy to assist you further; we just need some more information. What is the make, model, and year of your motorcycle?

  2. Bill

    I’ve got a 2003 wide glide. The gas gauge lights up and gauge goes to full and never goes any lower, even when fuel is low. I replaced the gauge and it does the same thing. How do I get into the fuel sending unit?

  3. Shantelle

    My Harley is a 2007 883 sportswriter.
    It is working with a fob and when I am trying to start the Harley the alarm goes off and don’t want to start.
    Please can you get me some advice.
    Can I remove the alarm and will it still start without the alarm and fob.


  4. declan

    2008 sportster sitting for 4 years wont start new battery new fob battery

    • Customer Service
      Customer Service

      Hello Declan,

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  5. Lucas Calcena
    Lucas Calcena

    Hello, my 2007 sportster 1200 has trouble starting.
    The battery is good, but when I hit the switch nothing happens. Just a low click. But when I mess with the shifter it starts eventually, but honestly I’m not sure what it is that I’m doing to get it to start. It just starts or doesn’t, and eventually turns over but again i don’t know what it is that makes it start or not start.