A Honda Elite motor scooter bought new

It hasnot worked well since I bought it. The dealer examined when it was new and under warranty and said it was fine even though it was hard to start. I’ve been through 5!! new batteries. Once it is finally started, it runs okay but it takes10 minutes or longer to start up for the first time every day and it’s just getting worse. I took it to a local motor cycle shop. They could fix it but the next day it was as difficult to start as before they fixed it. After three weeks they’d had no luck and handed it back to me.

Why can’t it be fixed? Or, do ALL motor scooters require 10 mintues or more to start?

File lemon law suit, return it, or keep sending it in everyday for warranty work until they get so mad at you they give you another new one/let you trade for something else.

It’s out of warranty. I need to figure out what’s wrong with the scooter. Once it’s running, it works okay. It is something to do with the starter system but the professionals couldn’t figure it out.

I’m guessing it doesn’t have kick start?

Is it turning over? The distributor may need to be replaced.

Nope. No kick start.
Turning over? Sometimes. But it doesn’t start. It sort of catches and then dies. And then sometimes it sort of just goes AHHHHH and doesn’t even try to start

Sounds like your starter is bad, or your flywheel is missing teeth. I would go from there.

Why would that be SO hard for a reputable dealer repair shop to diagnose and fix?

I’m guessing the people there a dummy’s. I am almost positive that is what is causing your starting problems.

What years is it? How many miles? Engine size? Two or four stroke? Is the scooter driven in the winter, if not is it stored properly? How long does it sit between drives? How old is the gas in the tank? Electric start or kick start or both?

When you try to start it does it turn over easily, but not start or does the starter have difficulty turning over the engine?

I used a battery tender to keep my motorcycle’s battery fully charged.


Ed B.

If what you’ve said is accurate, it’s not out of warranty. You told them of the problem before the warranty expired. They don’t get out of having to do warranty work just by waiting long enough to fix it. They were responsible for fixing what you told them was wrong with it while it was under warranty. They have yet to fix it. Take it back and make them fix it.

Your post is a bit murky about the symptoms but are you saying that it takes 10 minutes of cranking by the starter motor before it will start or the battery goes dead?
Any sputtering or coughing (scooter, not you) during this cranking?
Are you saying that the dealer is diagnosing and replacing batteries by the crate full?

Finally, I’d agree with the questions and points that edb1961 has stated.

Could be time to trade in on a Harley Road King… :slight_smile:

Once it is finally started, it runs okay but it takes10 minutes or longer to start up FOR THE FIRST TIME EVERY DAY and it’s just getting worse.
(Emphasis added.)

I wonder if the choke is INOP or not working properly (or even if the owner is schooled on how to operate a choke).

I’d squirt ~1 fl. oz. of gas on the air filter and see if it starts any easier.

You are likely covered under the lemon law. Read the links below.

Lemon Laws:



I worked for a motorcycle dealer and hard starting was one of the most common complaints. Usually the owner was at fault, but we did have mechanics that had the knack to get almost anything running. I would recommend you take it back to the dealer. Tell them you are disappointed with your purchase, but want to get to the bottom of the issue. Offer to leave it overnight. The next day go in and have the mechanic watch you start the scooter. If it is you they can tell you what you are doing wrong. If it isn?t you they will have seen the problem first hand and have a hard time denying it.

I agree with MeanJoe, focus on the carburetor & choke.

I take it your Honda Elite is a 2010 model, with fuel injection and an automatic choke?

The very first thing I would do if it was my scooter would be to have the valve clearance checked on it. Tight valve clearances on a small engine like that one will lead to hard starting issues.

And no, all scooters don’t need 10 minutes of cranking in order to get them to start.
You just happen to have a bad dealer that you bought it from.
If there’s another Honda motorcycle dealer near you, take it to them, and tell them that you aren’t happy with the servicing you have received from the other dealer, and are looking for a better dealer to make all your future purchases and services with.


It’s a 2007 Honda elite – I think that’s the last year this model was made.

I am thinking of giving up and buying another scooter. I bought the Honda because it was a well known brand. Now I’m sort of looking at a brand from Taiwan - kymco is the brand, I think – but I’m kind of shy of committing to another scooter.

Nah, don’t be shy…those things are great (and a lot of fun) to putt around on near the beach, city centers where parking is a nightmare and traffic is always slow, college campuses, all those kinds of things. You just got a bum deal, and seemingly with a bum dealer.

Honda’s are pretty good, overall, and if that’s not working for you, try another of the bigger brands…Yamaha, Kawasaki and Suzuki also make scooters. If you can, ask them to let you try it out. Come back the next day, and make sure it starts and runs well, and that they can service it properly.

I normally ask other customers about their bikes, and what kind of service they’ve been getting at the dealerships around town. Word gets around pretty quick in the bike world, and most will know the bad ones - and good ones! - right off the top of their head.

Okay, so it’s an 80cc engine with a carb, and an automatic choke.
How many miles are on it?
When was the last time you had the air filter cleaned/replaced, and the spark plug?

I would still have the valve clearance checked, and see if that resolves the issue.
If you lived in Denver, I would tell you to bring it over, and I would set it for you, just out of my own curiosity, as the motorcycle shops here can’t seem to repair smaller cc motorcycles to save their souls.

But have the valve clearances inspected, and set to the looser end of the adjustment range.