The GSX R600 boasts a sleek racer style and it’s a machine at the pinnacle of technological refinement.
The 600 cc version of the iconic racer packs a powerhouse of a four-cylinder engine with unrivaled throttle response and top-notch suspension.
Its ergonomics enhance both the speed and handling allowing riders to rip up the track all day long, but what are the common problems with the Suzuki GSX R600?
Take a quick pit stop, and we’ll tell you!
Table of Contents
1. Suzuki GSX R600 Won’t Start
Overall, the Suzuki GSX-R600 is as reliable as any of its competitors.
That said, there are a few tricks to the bike; not knowing them can cause a few headaches – just ask the various riders who have problems with their GSX-R600 not starting.
Here’s a real-life example:
“Turn the key on, and no power, nothing. I come back and pop the battery tender on the GSX-R. Barely half an hour later, it says it’s full charge. Hmmm. Okay. Take the tender off, put the key in and turn it on. Absolutely nothing. Now, I know (besides that the tender said the battery was at full charge) that there is life to the battery…”
There are three common problems with the GSX-R600 that can cause it not to start;
- Kill Switch: Make sure your kill switch didn’t flip on while you were starting your Gixxer. Also, check for loose wiring or a blown fuse.
- Side Stand Switch: Check if your side stand is down and your bike is in neutral or the side stand sensor will prevent the bike from starting. Also, make sure the sensor isn’t damaged and that its wiring is intact.
- Clutch Switch: The clutch switch stops your GSX-R600 from starting while the clutch is engaged. Make sure the clutch is disengaged, and make sure your clutch switch hasn’t vibrated loose.
2. Suzuki GSX R600 Won’t Stay Running
In other cases, especially in earlier models, riders are able to get the GSX-R600 to start, but it won’t stay running, as explained below by one owner:
“I can still get the bike to turn over. However, it doesn’t want to idle smoothly or stay running. With my very little knowledge of motorcycles, I did a bunch of research and decided to clean the fuel strainer and change the sparkplugs, but no luck. Then, I did some more research and found a forum that mentioned symptoms and diagnostic techniques for vacuum blockage, which would prohibit fuel from entering the engine adequately.”
On older, carburated models, the above-mentioned symptoms indicate a carburetor that needs a tune-up, as its air to fuel ratio is off.
On newer Gixxer 600s, however, the issue described above is likely the result of a clogged fuel injector. Clean your injectors with OEM-recommended fuel injector cleaner to know for sure.
3. Suzuki GSX R600 Won’t Start When Hot
We’ve heard more than a few GSX-R600 owners airing grievances about how their bike starts fine when it’s cold, but after some use, the bike won’t start until after it cools down.
“Once it’s hot, it won’t start, but if it cools down past 170, it will start up fine.”
“My friend’s [ GSX-R600] bike is not starting after turning it off after a ride and letting it sit for 5 minutes or so; it only happens when it’s hot outside. We both have k6 600s, and mine will start fine, and his will crank but won’t ignite and fire up unless we let it sit for 20 minutes or so and let it cool.”
This somewhat common problem is caused by a faulty batch of Crank Position Sensors (CKP).
The CKP lets the ECU know when to trigger the sparkplug and injection by relaying the crankshaft’s position.
Therefore, the CKP is critical when it comes to starting. It seems like these faulty batches of sensors had a tendency to overheat. When they would, they would give the ECU inaccurate information, resulting in a GSX-R600 that won’t start when hot.
4. Suzuki GSX R600 Instrument Gauge Cluster Not Working
Some pre-2011 GSX-R600 riders have encountered problems with their gauge cluster not working. In some cases, it’s one or two of the instruments that are not working, while in others, it’s the whole cluster.
“On my cluster, the only things that remain working on it are the neutral light, high beam light, turn signal lights, and the LEDs that light up the cluster itself. I have had my k6 GSXR 600 for almost a year now and had no problems with it until winter came. When the cold weather hit is when my instruments started to turn on and off like there was a loose wire. I checked the battery. It was good, and so was my charging system on my bike. I even tried putting my friend’s brand new battery in my bike, and they still weren’t turning on.”
In most cases, the problem was the dash display itself.
Apparently, there was a bad batch of instrument gauge displays that would stop working, sometimes only partially. Other times the whole thing would die.
The solution is to swap it out with a new display.
5. Suzuki GSX R600 Won’t Start Just Clicks
Another issue some GSX-R600 riders have described is a clicking sound at the start-up. Basically, when they go to start up their motorcycle, all it does is click.
“I started my GSXR twice without pulling the clutch. It was in neutral. It was a bit chilly in the garage. It struggled to come one and idled a bit high the first time, then the third time. It just made a weird wiring noise when I hit the start, then it clicked. then it went from that to just clicking sound coming from the rear area of the bike where the battery is located.”
The clicking noise generally indicates a failing starter solenoid. As the solenoid is struggling to magnetize, it makes a clicking sound. It could also be a bad fuse.
That said, older GSX-R600s had clutch switches that were susceptible to wear and tear after prolonged use. If the clutch switch connectors are damaged or corroded, it will prevent the bike from firing up even if the clutch is fine.
Clean the clutch switch connectors if possible, and replace the switch if its connectors are corroded beyond repair.
6. Suzuki GSX R600 Front Brake Feels Spongy
The GSX-R600 made the headlines back in 2013 when all 2004-2013 year models were recalled due to a problem with the front brake’s master cylinder.
Per the ACCC’s notice, corrosion was developing in between the return spring and the front brake’s piston due to inadequate surface treatment at the factory.
In fact, this issue was such a widespread and retroactive concern Suzuki issued the following incentivized statement:
“Safety is our number one priority, and we want to ensure every affected GSX-R is repaired. We created this trial incentive program to bring additional attention to the brake master cylinder recall service on these GSX-R models. We recognize that taking your motorcycle to the dealer for any recall service can be inconvenient, and with the $100 prepaid Visa card, we hope to offset that inconvenience to our valued customers.”
More than a few Gixxer enthusiasts complained about the spongy front brake feeling that would develop. As a result, a feeling indicative of A dip in brake performance is as dangerous as it sounds.
Apparently, the issue was caused by gas that would generate inside the master brake cylinder as a result of the corrosion in the piston.
Furthermore, the issue would be made worse by old or expired brake fluid.
If you’re the owner of a 2004-2013 year model Suzuki GSX R600 and you’ve been experiencing a reduction in brake performance, it’s imperative that you have a trusted Suzuki mechanic examine your motorcycle.
Even if you’re simply experiencing spongy or unconventional braking sensations, it’s best to have the brake pistons inspected and updated with proper treatment before it becomes a performance and safety issue.
If the cylinder is already incurring wear or producing gas, you’ll want to get your brake cylinder replaced right away.
7. Suzuki GSX R600 Battery Not Charging
Some owners of the older models report that their Suzuki GSX R600 won’t charge.
The culprit is generally due to wear and tear in the charging system, namely the Regulator/Rectifier and the Stator.
The GSX R600’s stator is the part responsible for converting the sportbike’s motor power into an electrical current.
As its name implies, the Regulator/Rectifier rectifies the current, so the battery can use is to charge while you’re riding.
It also regulates the charge, preventing the battery from overcharging.
A failing Regulator/Rectifier or Stator is the leading two cause for a battery that keeps dying and won’t charge on an older Suzuki GSX R600, as the engine heat wears the part out over time, especially on Gixxers that are ridden hard and fast for years.
- Class-leading, high-performing, true sportbike handling.
- Performs well on the track and in the street.
- Fun to ride.
- No real updates since 2011
- Expensive for a midweight sportbike
- Front brake issues can make the brakes feel spongey (2004-2013 year models)
- Doesn’t come equipped with a quick shifter.
“The GSX R600 was as well equipped as any other supersport machine, but electronics were restricted to a two-mode power map and an electronically adjustable, speed-sensitive steering damper. There was no traction control, quick shifter, or ABS. The lower of the two power maps had so little power you’d barely use it, and the steering damper wasn’t as good as a manually-adjustable aftermarket item.”
“Year: 2014. I love this bike. Turns head, especially with a full Yoshimura system on it, fast enough to keep up with the big boys to an extent, and tame enough to get out of trouble easily should you go into a corner a bit too hot! All-round great bike. The riding position is a bit full-on, and long rides tend to leave you with sore wrists and an aching back, but it’s not designed for long-distance touring, so for short little blasts, it’s perfect! Bridgestone tires it comes with aren’t very good and don’t offer much feel, so I changed them to Dunlops, and it sticks like glue into corners now.”
“I absolutely love this bike. It’s amazing. After running it in as it was new, it now performs amazingly. It’s comfortable to ride and goes beautifully. I’m 6ft 2 and sit comfortably on the bike, although very long motorway journeys, which I have only done a couple of times, will hurt your backside and legs. Other than that, it handles corners amazingly and is rapid and sounds AMAZING!!! If you like gixxers and want a 600, don’t think, just buy, you will not be disappointed. Amazing machine!!”
“I have now had my ‘little cracker’ for a year, and I absolutely love it. Maybe it is just me, but I always seem to have more fun on a 600 than 1000. This bike handles fantastic and sounds fantastic – especially with the Yoshimura end can. I also think that the blue and white with white wheels looks great – especially with the black Yoshimura. I have now done 5k miles – keep the chain adjusted and lubed, and the gearchange quality is superb – I love to sneak up through the box with the revs approaching the red line. The close-ratio box is great fun when you are gunning it.”
Source: https://www.motorcyclenews.com/bike-reviews/suzuki/GSX R600/2011/
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