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I'm trying to figure out what's wrong with my Virago 250cc. It will only run if you have the choke on. If you let it off the choke the engine switches off. I originally thought that maybe the carbs were dirty. I ran some Seafoam through the fuel system, but it didn't seem to help. You can rev the bike in neural a little bit, but it will switch-off if you put to much throttle on. Does anyone know what's wrong with the bike? Is it something I can fix?
 

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If it only runs with the choke on you are probably getting too much air or not enough fuel. Try pulling the carbs of and using carb cleaner or you might have to disassemble and let the parts soak in a solvent.
 

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After years in a dealership seeing bikes with the same problem come in for carb tear downs, some almost every year, because people let the gas dry out in the carbs and the resultant goo sticks in the jets and passage ways, I'm on board with the total carb tear down.

The fact is you should take out all the jets, screws, slides, and stuff, but you can leave the basic rack of carbs together. Take them to a bike shop that has a carb washer that will slosh them around like a washing machine. That will work into the passage ways that you couldn't do at home with a can of spray. If it costs say $25, it's worth it.

After you get done they will need synchronized.
 

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Yeah sync the carbs for sure, but only if you have more than one carb. Im not sure, but I think the virago only has one.
 

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Yup, Half to agree...probably varnish. But like 67fire said, check for vacuum leaks between carb. and cyl head. It is important to have a good seal.
 

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The additives in gas are just killing carbs. Nowadays, you really have to use a fuel stabilizer at all times. Sta-Bil is what I use. No noticeable impact to performance, doesn't cost much, but no more gooped up carbs.
 

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ive been banging my head against the wll for two days trying and cleanng carbs on a gs 550.im gonna have to total strip down and leave soak for 48 hours i recon.cheers guys
 

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It took me about eight hours of "lazy" shop time to tear out four carbs on a Suzuki Bandit, clean them and put them back. Its a bit of a task, but she runs like a champ!
 

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ive been banging my head against the wll for two days trying and cleanng carbs on a gs 550.im gonna have to total strip down and leave soak for 48 hours i recon.cheers guys
I like Mike's trick of running thick fishing line down all of the orifices. :thumbsup:

Eric :)
 

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I've read all the advice given.. buut,.. ima share whats going on with my bike.. i'm a new rider, and only know about spark plugs and batteries so far.. i recently purchased a 1969 ds6-b, now when i first started riding it before having to replace the battery, i, being a newbie, someway or another thought the choke up (towards me) was off and pushing it down was on.. bike seem to start and idle fine with the choke down (me thinking that meant it was open) and then would ride with the choke up (thinking that meant it was off) .. after replacing the battery and spark plugs.. and figuring out that the choke was the opposite of what i thought... the bike won't idle without the choke open or up, and dies immediately when closed.. letting the engine really warm up and everything, same issue.. i'm weary riding it with the choke up(because a lot of people have said its a bad thing to do), but it was the previous owner that had told me if the left carburetor wasn't firing to just lift the choke and ride with it open for a bit.. well, she only idles and runs with the choke fully open.. which is odd considering when i was doing the opposite, she fired right up with the choke fully closed and idled.. but could this have made the issue worse?.. because i would be riding it with the choke fully open after that.. ?

anyways, i have noticed that the carburetor is tarnished a little bit on the outside, which i gather is a fuel leak??.. so, it must be tarnished on the inside aswell.. he had had the bike sitting for some time before putting it up for sale, but rode beautifully for a minute (hahah)..

lastly, since the choke is open when riding, does that cause the rpms to go crazy high, ranging from 7000-8000 in first gear, going about 20mph? is it related to the choke and carburetor?

i hadn't cleaned the carbs or done anything because the previous owner also told me that i didnt need to get the carbs flushed or anything, and to just ride her and the more frequent the riding the left carburetor would clear up.. but now the choke issue.. has me wondering..

obviously, ima lady.. hahaha.. and don't know **** about ****.

any suggestions as to what to do.. that i could do on my own.. i can turn a wrench, etc.. and i have clymers service/repair handbook.. so.. simple step by side, possibly aided with pictures, hahaa, guide me through this.
please
and yes, i may need someone to hold my hand aswell. ;)

thanks guys!! and sorry this was long.
oh and the choke light comes on (does that mean that it needs to be choked or that the choke is on?.. does it for both)
 

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thanks guys!! and sorry this was long.

oh and the choke light comes on (does that mean that it needs to be choked or that the choke is on?.. does it for both)
Long is good.....except that you left out maybe the most important piece of information: That it's a 2-stroke; kind of a different animal, mixing oil with the gas and all that......or filling the oil tank along with filling the gas.

Also it is usually better to start your own thread instead of hopping on at the end of one that somebody else has started. :icon_cool:

A choke is active when it is closed;that is, it is on when it is closed. Normally you would keep it on (closed) until the engine warms up and then turn it off (open).

If it really won't run without the choke being closed/on then it's not getting enough fuel and the carbs probably need cleaning. I would normally recommend putting some carb cleaner in with the gas......but not sure if that would be a good idea with a 2-stroke or not.

A "choke light" ?? Don't think I've ever seen that. My guess is that it's just a reminder that you have the choke ON.

I fear that you will have a LOT of trouble finding anyone knowledgeable on that little beast. Good luck.
 
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