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Since the forecast for the next week is all above freezing temperatures and we only have 2 inches of snow, I decided to get out the fourwheeler yesterday, I have a '99 Honda Foreman 450 ES. It all began when I tried to start it....Dead battery. so that was okay, no biggie. I charged the battery and started my machine and drove it outside and I was driving along and when I went to slow down, I tried to gear down and I could not shift at all. All I get when i press the button to shift is a suffering little click. It did this a few times to me before I put it up for the winter, but now it is full time pain in the "edit for bad language". also, If it gets wet from driving through puddles the neutral light and the Reverse light come on at the same time and it wont shift at all. I was wondering if anyone else has had promblems like this with their Electric shift??
 

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Yes my friend has one that I borrowed for a weekend, Same thing happened as soon as it got hot.
Sorry don't know why but it's a common problem with the ES.
 

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For the first problem (shifting) it sounds like to me it is due to a dieing battery, usually the shifting is the first to go. If that is the case, it sounds like there maybe a problem with the charging circuit or the battery isn't holding charge and time for a new one. I would suggest trying a buddy's battery (or swapping) for a day or a few hours.

As for the second problem, it sounds like one of your water proof connectors are not so water proof any more. Check the connectors in front of the rear right tire. There should be a light coating of silicone grease in the connectors and a rubber seal. If that shows nothing I am guessing the connections to the computer. That is at the back above the storage box.

Good luck

Lloyd
 

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ryan450r
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I have the same wheeler.... great wheeler until the battery gets weak... Throw a new battery in there with a fresh charge and it'll resolve those shifting issues.
 

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This is the reason why I will never own an ES atv. I'll take a cvt/foot shift/hydrostatic over it any day.
 

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it sounds like what the others say buy a new battery, the battery is weak and not hold a charge so there is not enough power for the servo to shift the gears for you. and your connections are getting water in them, undo the connection and put electric grease in them problem sloved
 

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ryan450r
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I've had the light issue happen when the battery is low too.. I HATE ES and would trade someone for a foot shift anyday.... I only ended up with this garbage ES because it was a really good trade.
 

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Like the others said, check the battery out first. If it is not that than it could be the angle sensor or the speed sensor. If it will shift up, but not back down, it is usually the speed sensor. If it will not shift up or down and it is not the battery, it is the angle sensor.

I have an ES and I don't think it is so bad. If you really don't like it, just fab up a foot shift lever (or buy one for a standard shift) and bolt it on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for all the info guys, I am getting a new battery tonight and I'm going to throw it in tomorrow. I dont think I am going to gain anything by putting the new battery in because it did the same thing in the fall and I replaced the battery and it wasnt quite as bad, but as soon as you got it wet, you're screwed. hopefully its not too serious, I am wondering if i've got a whole lot of corrosion in that little box of wires infront of the rear right tire, because as soon as it gets a little bit wet it completely gives up. I guess we'll see what happens. Thanks again.

Dickie.
 

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You defiantly have a problem with poor insulation I'd say. If you replaced the battery last fall don't waste your money on another, buy yourself a high quality multi-meter and find the source of that gremlin.
 

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I might be dumb, but I’m not stupid!
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I have a 99 ES and when the battery went dead the first time the dealer installed an "update" for 2000 it has helped a little. when the bike is rode on a consistent basis I have no issues but if it sits for a couple months without being ridden or started I have battery issues. I just put battery #3 in it this winter. I really like the bike otherwise
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
lloydsaw said:
For the first problem (shifting) it sounds like to me it is due to a dieing battery, usually the shifting is the first to go. If that is the case, it sounds like there maybe a problem with the charging circuit or the battery isn't holding charge and time for a new one. I would suggest trying a buddy's battery (or swapping) for a day or a few hours.

As for the second problem, it sounds like one of your water proof connectors are not so water proof any more. Check the connectors in front of the rear right tire. There should be a light coating of silicone grease in the connectors and a rubber seal. If that shows nothing I am guessing the connections to the computer. That is at the back above the storage box.

Good luck

Lloyd
[snapback]752345[/snapback]​
I sprayed some connection penetration oil on that little white box with wires in it and it helped a little but I think it is baked. Does anyone know if they are replaceable?? Thanks guys.

Dickie.
 

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Dickie said:
lloydsaw said:
For the first problem (shifting) it sounds like to me it is due to a dieing battery, usually the shifting is the first to go. If that is the case, it sounds like there maybe a problem with the charging circuit or the battery isn't holding charge and time for a new one. I would suggest trying a buddy's battery (or swapping) for a day or a few hours.

As for the second problem, it sounds like one of your water proof connectors are not so water proof any more. Check the connectors in front of the rear right tire. There should be a light coating of silicone grease in the connectors and a rubber seal. If that shows nothing I am guessing the connections to the computer. That is at the back above the storage box.

Good luck

Lloyd
[snapback]752345[/snapback]​
I sprayed some connection penetration oil on that little white box with wires in it and it helped a little but I think it is baked. Does anyone know if they are replaceable?? Thanks guys.

Dickie.
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Take the connectors apart and spray on the inside, and don't use penetrating oil, it attracts dirt. You want to use a grease or silicone spray (not silicone caulking), just a light coating, and ensure the rubber seals are flexible and able to seal. When you have it apart check for any discoloration/melting if you figure it has been 'baked'.

Lloyd
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Hey guys. Yesterday my buddies wanted me to go biking to the tavern for some food and I didnt know what I was going to do because I really wanted to go. So I thought for a minute and I decided to take the wires going into the small white connecters and wrap them in a large amount electrical tape, I figured it was worth a try because I really wanted to go. To my suprise, I didnt have any ES problems at all. I dont know how long it will last, but hopefully it's fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
skidoomxz550 said:
good to see that you got the problem fixed.
by the rear wheel is not the smartest spot for the white white connecters.
hope the ES keeps working

[snapback]762215[/snapback]​
I agree. I am not quite sure what Honda designers were thinking when they decided to put them in the wheel well. Underneath the seat would be a much better place for them.
 
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