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Author Topic: 2014 Zero SR issues  (Read 1963 times)

aaronb

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2014 Zero SR issues
« on: April 29, 2016, 12:08:33 AM »

I have had a few problems with the bike since I got in 19 months ago.

- The most recent issue was when the bike lost almost most of its power when I hit 16% remaining battery. I was on the highway! However, I am getting the impression from some other posts that this may be the new "normal". If that is the case, I really wish Zero would have warned me when the change was made (I guess during a firmware update???). I have taken the bike down to 6% remaining battery in the past without any issues.

- The break/engine battery regen system has failed me. It would disengage for a few seconds and start working again. This was quite alarming when I was slowing down at an intersection, as you can imagine. All of the sudden, the bike just accelerated down the hill. The guy at the shop said Zero had them adjust some timing thing and that seemed to resolve the problem. However, it started happening again a few months ago. They did the same timing adjustment and it seems to be fine now. My warranty is ending soon and I am concerned I will have to get this timing thing fixed twice a year at my own cost.

- The front headlamp --> The nuts and bolts fell off the bottom where the headlight attaches to the bike- it was vibrating a lot. I found my own nut/bolts in my garage and that seemed to resolve the issue. I bring this minor thing up because I saw somebody else ran into the same problem. It was very noisy and you will know if you have the same issue.

- I had to get the tires replaced. The stock tires were really slippery. I understand that this is normal for a motorcycle.

- Zero replaced my tank bag because the zipper broke. The second bag's zipper broke as well. I thought Zero was going to replace the bag with something hard or at least a better zipper... Anybody else have this experience?

- The brakes, especially the rear ones are bad; the newer models have ABS. I think ABS is essential with this bike.

HOWEVER -- When it is working properly, this bike is great. I love it. My mechanic loves it the rest of the time.


 



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2014 Zero SR

Doug S

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2016, 12:56:38 AM »

The most recent issue was when the bike lost almost most of its power when I hit 16% remaining battery. I was on the highway! However, I am getting the impression from some other posts that this may be the new "normal". If that is the case, I really wish Zero would have warned me when the change was made (I guess during a firmware update???). I have taken the bike down to 6% remaining battery in the past without any issues.

That's been my experience too. It does seem overly cautious. I wish Zero would let me manage my ride in terms of charge left. It is disconcerting when you lose essentially all power, and when you're 1/2-mile from home, there's just no need for it.

Quote
- The break/engine battery regen system has failed me. It would disengage for a few seconds and start working again.

Is this only happening when the battery is very full (as in 100%)? Mine does that too when I'm coasting to the first stop light of my commute in the morning. It makes sense -- they don't want to risk overcharging the battery by regen. It could behave a little better, perhaps with a little more hysteresis so it doesn't cut in and out multiple times.

Quote
The front headlamp --> The nuts and bolts fell off the bottom where the headlight attaches to the bike- it was vibrating a lot. I found my own nut/bolts in my garage and that seemed to resolve the issue. I bring this minor thing up because I saw somebody else ran into the same problem. It was very noisy and you will know if you have the same issue.

Mine is a very early 2014 SR (I put my deposit down the day the SR was announced), and it never had those bolts installed. When I finally tracked down the noise, the paint around the through-holes was perfect; clearly no bolts had ever been installed there. I suspect a few bikes (ours) got through before everybody on the line was fully trained.

Quote
Zero replaced my tank bag because the zipper broke. The second bag's zipper broke as well. I thought Zero was going to replace the bag with something hard or at least a better zipper... Anybody else have this experience?

Same thing happened to me, except the second one's been fine for almost two years because I'm very careful with it now. Mine will be going soon anyhow, as soon as the DigiNow charger ships (sigh).

Quote
HOWEVER -- When it is working properly, this bike is great. I love it. My mechanic loves it the rest of the time.

I sure can't argue with you there! Considering I've put 25,000 miles on my bike in less than 2-1/2 years, I'm not complaining too much about the time it's been in the shop, and it is a joy when it isn't.
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ultrarnr

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2016, 04:33:10 PM »

I had the power loss problems on my 2014 SR as well. On two occasions when it got down to 14% SOC the power was cut so top speed was 25 MPH. When the SOC reached 10% the bike died and SOC was shown as 0%. The last time it cut power at 17% SOC. Same thing, max speed was 25 MPH and I knew it would soon die completely. But it was never consistent and sometimes you could take it down below 10% SOC before there was any power loss. You just never knew once you got below 20% how much range you really had left. I just didn't trust the bike anymore and this was a big part in my decision to trade it in on a 2016 SR.
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Manzanita

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2016, 11:43:04 AM »


Is this only happening when the battery is very full (as in 100%)? Mine does that too when I'm coasting to the first stop light of my commute in the morning. It makes sense -- they don't want to risk overcharging the battery by regen. It could behave a little better, perhaps with a little more hysteresis so it doesn't cut in and out multiple times.


Yes, I have assumed this is normal. After I charge my battery overnight, my commute starts out with a 5 mile downhill, and simply coasting through turns with the regen kicking in and out leads for some additional excitement through the twisties. I've gotten used to it, although this past week I dialed down my regen to 30% and now I'm kicking myself as to why I hadn't done that earlier. The bike is much smoother going off-throttle into turns. Previously I had the regen at 100% because it felt a little more similar to a gas engine.

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protomech

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2016, 03:21:18 PM »


Is this only happening when the battery is very full (as in 100%)? Mine does that too when I'm coasting to the first stop light of my commute in the morning. It makes sense -- they don't want to risk overcharging the battery by regen. It could behave a little better, perhaps with a little more hysteresis so it doesn't cut in and out multiple times.


Yes, I have assumed this is normal. After I charge my battery overnight, my commute starts out with a 5 mile downhill, and simply coasting through turns with the regen kicking in and out leads for some additional excitement through the twisties. I've gotten used to it, although this past week I dialed down my regen to 30% and now I'm kicking myself as to why I hadn't done that earlier. The bike is much smoother going off-throttle into turns. Previously I had the regen at 100% because it felt a little more similar to a gas engine.
Yes, this is "normal" and it's not a good design.

I start riding in Sport mode after charging. There's still a bit of on/off for regen but it's less abrupt due to the lower regen settings. After a few miles I switch to my Custom mode which is setup for full regen on braking and it is fine.
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Electric Terry

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2016, 06:36:03 PM »

yes the battery will have choppy regen if fresh off the charger and at 100% as there is no where for that energy to go.  Does that make sense?

And yes, as ultrarnr mentioned and others who upgraded to a 2016, the new battery algorithm is much more accurate and gives you higher power closer to 0%.  Also the 2015 has more capacity than the 2014 and the 2016 has more battery capacity than the 2015, so you will also have more range before it cuts back power.  If you can't upgrade yet, that's ok, just know when you do this problem will be fixed.

I am a huge fan of technology and love electric motorcycles.  I wish everyone on this forum could upgrade to either a 2015 or 2016 as they are just amazing with all the improvements now!  They were amazing 2014 and before, but everything 2015 and newer is just another order of magnitude of amazement with all things considered.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2016, 06:38:28 PM by Electric Terry »
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ultrarnr

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2016, 11:12:03 PM »

The issue with regen has been taken care of in the 2016 models.
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Kocho

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2016, 03:03:53 AM »

I rode my '15 SR "hot" off the charger today (OK, maybe 1 hour after a full charge) and it did not seem to have any choppiness with regeneration. I was looking for it, since I read this thread before the ride. I'm in Custom mode with partial regen through the throttle and full regen with brake. Both worked smoothly.
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Doug S

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2016, 03:37:29 AM »

I rode my '15 SR "hot" off the charger today (OK, maybe 1 hour after a full charge) and it did not seem to have any choppiness with regeneration. I was looking for it, since I read this thread before the ride. I'm in Custom mode with partial regen through the throttle and full regen with brake. Both worked smoothly.

It only happens if you do more regen than you use power in the first little bit -- in other words, if your first segment of the drive is downhill. If you don't live near the top of a hill, it'll never happen, because you'll be using more power than you'll be regen'ing initially. It just doesn't want to charge the battery over 100%, which is a good thing.

And it sounds like it's been fixed since the 2014 bikes, anyhow. Even for the '14s, all it would take is a small tweak in the firmware, so it doesn't do any regen until, say 98% or lower. I wouldn't be surprised if it disappears next time they re-flash my bike.
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Kocho

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2016, 03:41:04 AM »

Makes sense, thanks!

I rode my '15 SR "hot" off the charger today (OK, maybe 1 hour after a full charge) and it did not seem to have any choppiness with regeneration. I was looking for it, since I read this thread before the ride. I'm in Custom mode with partial regen through the throttle and full regen with brake. Both worked smoothly.

It only happens if you do more regen than you use power in the first little bit -- in other words, if your first segment of the drive is downhill. If you don't live near the top of a hill, it'll never happen, because you'll be using more power than you'll be regen'ing initially. It just doesn't want to charge the battery over 100%, which is a good thing.

And it sounds like it's been fixed since the 2014 bikes, anyhow. Even for the '14s, all it would take is a small tweak in the firmware, so it doesn't do any regen until, say 98% or lower. I wouldn't be surprised if it disappears next time they re-flash my bike.
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aaronb

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2016, 09:04:01 PM »

Thanks for the confirmations.

Yep, when I start out (100%) I go downhill for a mile. That is the only time the issue appears now.

I should have updated firmware; Any way to check?

It would rock if Zero could give us 2014 owners a really good trade-in deal. As it is, it looks like I may not get more than 8k for mine, if that.
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qorw

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #11 on: July 07, 2016, 07:41:57 PM »

Similar problems on my 2014 Zero DS, BUT when it does not regen after a full charge I HAVE to switch it off and on again before the regen works again. The regen does NOT kick in automatically when the battery has been drained below 100% during the initial ride.

Then over the last three days I have had some weird stuff on the On/Off key switch, it did'nt switch off properly, everything flickered for a while then switched off slowly , and TODAY it does not switch off at all! It's currently standing in my office basement charging away ok, but with ALL the lights on brightly (had a few phone calls from colleagues telling me I "forgot" my headlight on.... grrrr)

The local dealer is clueless, will send Zero USA an email tonight.  :(
(Zero DS 2014, bought Feb 2016, 6500km on the clock)
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MrDude_1

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #12 on: July 08, 2016, 12:57:09 AM »

The issue with regen has been taken care of in the 2016 models.

how? does it burn off the extra energy as heat or what?
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BrianTRice

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #13 on: July 08, 2016, 01:00:31 AM »

The issue with regen has been taken care of in the 2016 models.

how? does it burn off the extra energy as heat or what?

The bike allows the battery to be charged through regen over 100% (there are limits but they're not clear). The assumption (which the rider should use) is that this energy will be quickly spent to get back below 100%.
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DynoMutt

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Re: 2014 Zero SR issues
« Reply #14 on: July 08, 2016, 03:19:20 AM »

So they concealed the problem by remapping battery capacity to be overflow?  I guess that's better than running it through a capacitor and blowing it off as heat like the buses do.
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