Motorcycle Makes Clicking Noise When Trying To Start: Know Why

Motorcycle Makes Clicking Noise When Trying To Start

Are you facing lots of trouble while starting your motorcycle? Or, maybe you hear clicking sounds when you want to start your bike over time. There are several reasons why a motorcycle makes clicking noises when trying to start it. Generally, the common reason behind it is a bad or damaged battery.

What if you go out on a long drive with your bike and on the way back you see your bike making a clicking sound? Clicking a sound means you failed to start your bike. But if you have the right knowledge about it, you can get rid of this problem immediately. And you can start the motorcycle again.

In general, the function of a motorcycle is not as complicated as that of a car.  So you can easily solve this kind of problem. Read this article from beginning to end. Hopefully, your problem will be solved.

12 Reasons Why Motorcycle Makes A Clicking Noise When Trying To Start It:

No one wants the hassle of starting a motorcycle in a time of urgency. I think you are also one of them, right? Very often, you may face this type of hassle and want to get rid of this problem. Don’t worry,  there is some mind-blowing remedy to avoid this hassle.

Reason 1: Battery Drained

The second most common but considerable issue is your battery is drained. When the battery is drained, everything except the engine responds. If you see that the headlights, the stereo is on, and the other parts are working except running bikes, then the battery needs to be charged. When the battery loses its power or charges, it cannot ignite the engine let alone run.

If you see all these things, you have to understand the battery drain. In that case, you have to charge it well until it is 100% charged. A motorcycle battery needs at least a 50% charge to perform. But it is better to charge it up to 75% before getting started.  When fully charged, restart your engine. See if you notice any changes. If you see continued clicking or ticking noise, jump into the next step.

Reason 2: Damage Or Dead Battery

The second reason behind making clicking noises is your battery is dead. If you turn the key in on position and don’t respond anymore, understand the battery is dead. When the battery is dead completely, you can’t even start your motorcycle let alone go for a ride.

Moreover, very often, it makes fast clicking sounds. Therefore, having a bad or old battery can also cause a loud clicking noise. It’s not just clicking noise that makes the engine run. Anyway, the motorcycle starter consists of 2 parts. One is the starter motor and the other is the starter solenoid.

What does solenoid do? It combines magnetic field lines to form a magnetic field. This also turns it into a magnet. This magnet will polarize the gear when you turn the key to the start position. It will then rotate the engine’s flywheel as needed to generate the required torque.

But when your battery is completely useless, the magnet will not have enough power to turn the flywheel. And for this reason, your motorcycle makes a clicking noise.

Reason 3: Bad Or Seized Engine

Another major cause of clicking noise is engine damage. The engine is called the heart of any vehicle. Now, if there is a problem with this engine, it is very common that the problem will be seen in the whole system. When the engine is confiscated, the function inside the engine becomes useless. 

Consequently, crankshaft bearings are unable to turn normally. This causes other parts such as pistons, piston rods, rod bearings, etc. to become hot and stick together. The engine loses its normal function. And for this, you hear an annoying clicking noise.

Reason 4: Failure Of Starter Relay Button

When you realize that there is a problem with the battery and you have changed it but the problem is not going away, then you must understand that there is a problem with the starter. In some cases, this is the most culprit reason behind this type of sound.

The starter is the part that represents the whole starting process. This helps the magnet complete the polarizing process. As a result, the flywheel does not produce enough torque and the engine does not start.

And without any of these, it is normal for motorcycles to generate clicking and ticking noise. So monitor your starter well and change it if necessary. Or, seek advice from an expert. Maybe he’ll give you some tips so you don’t have to change your starter button.

Reason 5: Deviation Of Cables, Connections, And Corrosion

This could be another possible reason behind the clicking sound. It is often seen that after a long ride your bike loses its wiring or other connection cables directly connected to the engine, grip, handlebars, and starter.

Versute, it can cause accidents as well as loud noises. So see if the certain cables are in their specific place. If any of the wires open, attach whatever is directly connected to the engine. Then start the bike again and see if that sounds. If so, suppose the problem is elsewhere.

Reason 6: Problems With Starter Motor

The starter motor is an important consideration that can result in clicking noise.  Due to the bad starter motor, the motorcycle does not start properly. Since the job of the motor is to inject the energy stored in the battery into the engine through the flywheel.

So if it is damaged, not enough energy will enter the engine and the engine will not be able to gain speed.  Also, the piston will become idle.  And if the starter motor does not work properly, a clicking noise will also be created.

Reason 7: Kill Switch Is On

Not all bike riders use the kill switch as usual or very rarely. However, if you have used it recently, see if it is on at all. Or, maybe you left your bike and went somewhere else. Someone else turned it on and left. Or, you have an accident somewhere and it turns on automatically.

In many ways, it can happen  So it is important to bring the kill switch to the off position. This is because when the kill switch is on, a lot of clicking sound is generated and the bike does not start. So take a good look.

Reason 8: Bad Starter

A bad starter means you can’t start or even warm up your engine. A starter is a motor that uses a battery to power a bike. It transmits energy from the fuel to the engine and from the engine to the carburetor. The engine is started and is moving.

This allows the flywheel to rotate and a magnetic field to emerge. In this way, all the parts respond and the bike is ready to start. But when you see that your bike is making a loud clicking sound, you must understand that there is a problem with it. So, I think it would be reasonable to change it and install a new one.

Reason 9: Fuel Valve Is Set To “Off”

If the fuel valve is in the off position, the normal flow of fuel is interrupted. Also, it cannot control the flow of fuel. This problem can also occur if the fuel valve is set up in the wrong place. So make sure the fuel valve is in position and wait a while until the carburetor bowl is full.

Reason 10: Faulty Starter Solenoid

The next thing that can cause this problem is the useless starter solenoid. This is a very delicate matter and there are many problems to be faced when it is lost. When your motor does not work and delays or does not work properly, assume your starter solenoid is missing.

Even after you start the start button, when you don’t get any response from the engine, you will assume that there is a problem. And as a result, it is often seen that there is a bad kind of bitter sound, that is, a clicking sound.

Reason 11: Spark Plugs Not Respond Properly

Spark plugs are another important issue that causes the engine to make such noises. When spark plugs are damaged, various problems occur. These include power loss, poor gas mileage, low engine power output, problems with starting, and problems with throttling.  And with all this, a clicking noise will happen naturally.

Reason 12: Oil Level Is Low

It is very common that if there is a shortage of oil in the tank, the engine and other parts do not work properly. When the oil pressure is too low, it is assumed that some parts are not working naturally. It is not able to transmit lubricant to the piston properly.

There is a possibility of catching fire in the piston.  In this case, even if you want to start your motorcycle, it will not start and most likely will give a clicking sound.

7 Easy Ways To Fix The Clicking Noises Issue Just In A Moment:

After diagnosing the exact issue or problem why your motorcycle gives weird clicking sounds, now time to fix them. But fixing all the issues may not be possible immediately. Yet, you can fix most of them spontaneously within a very short time. So, apply these methods to get your bike on the track.

1. Replace The Dead Battery

If your motorcycle won’t start with one click or makes cracking sounds, you need to take after your battery first. In many cases, the motorcycle makes a ticking or clicking noise when idling. The reason behind this is a dead or damaged battery. In the meantime, you can check if the battery is fully charged or not. In most cases, there is a chance to get less power and ignition lack of charging.

2. Check The Fuel Injection System

It is a preliminary investigation but not optional. After checking and fixing the battery issue, jump into it and see if the fuel injectors work perfectly. So before fixing it, consider whether there is an injector issue or something else. In this case, first, check if the fuel pump machine is OK.

If you see the clicking noise after starting the bike, you can hear the pump moving. If you do not hear the sound, you need to see the pump fuse. Then if you have a problem, fix it. If you have little knowledge, you can take the help of an expert.

3. Take A Look At The Exhaust Joint System

This type of problem can be seen if there are many problems in the exhaust joint system. The main reason for this is that the garbage is jammed. When the exhaust system is clogged, unwanted substances cannot enter through it. So you can clean the muffler or exhaust system with advice from YouTube or an expert. It will help you to get rid of this unwanted sound. As a result, you can ride your bike safely and hassle-free.

4. Insert Fresh Engine Oil

When replacing a damaged battery, add a new fuel when you have finished checking the fuel injection system.  This is because the old oil cannot work properly and move the piston.  So remove the old oil and add new oil.  You will get sharp results and a clicking sound will vanish.

5. Recycle The Key

Now rotate your key at least 10 to 12 times in the on position. Now wait for 5 to 10 minutes and then try to start the engine again. But even if you fail, do the following.

6. Replace The Worst Spark Plug

Spark plugs are not excluded when it comes to ignition. However, when there is a problem with the spark plug, the engine does not start and gives a clicking sound most of the time. So I would suggest replacing the bad spark plugs and installing a new one. By doing this you can easily get rid of all these bad experiences.

7. Check The Petcock (Fuel Control Valve)

Petcock, also known as the fuel control valve, is a very important part.  Due to its error, the fuel cannot circulate a certain amount.  It controls fuel in off, on, and reserve settings.  But this petcock occasionally becomes clogged which becomes a major problem.

This results in the emergence of such sounds. And so there is a problem with the engine. Corrosive metal also plays a role in this. Rusty metals or substances cause various harmful elements in the oil. So observe Petcock well and fix it.

5 Things To Consider Before Fixing Clicking Noise Issues On A Motorcycle:

Accidents can happen while working and it is not uncommon. In this case, if we keep some things in mind, we can be safe from these deadly risks. So let’s take a look at what to consider.

1. Make Sure You Collect All The Needed Materials

The prerequisite for any work related to motorcycles or all other work is to collect the necessary materials and tools. It can be used in a matter of moments as per the need as it brings the speed to work. So collect whatever is useful. As a result, work can be done quickly and safely. You may need a screwdriver, nuts, bolts, safety goggles, gloves, and more.

2. Work In The Open Sky Or Lighting Places

Try to do any work in an open space. This will increase the beauty of the work and speed up the work. And if it is a motorcycle or such delicate work, there is no alternative to it, and it will not be so difficult to see your inner part and you can do the work effortlessly. This will reduce the risk and the chances of accidents.

3. Have Sharp Knowledge

It is important to have good skills and tested knowledge about the work. Know well beforehand about the work you are doing. You can apply those experiences here. It will not harm you and your bike. Let’s know why your motorcycle is not starting and what you should do. In this case, you can take the advice of YouTube and other skilled people.

4. Identify The Exact Problem

If you can’t identify why the motorcycle is making clicking noises, the work will be lengthy and time-consuming. If you can identify the problem correctly, you can get the job done very easily and quickly. So try to figure out where the probability is. And if you can’t do it, you can take the help of an expert. You do not have to worry about this and the work will be done safely.

5. Keep The Electronic Materials Aside

Try to keep the electrical instruments away from you as much as possible. Because they can cause an accident at any time. So it is important to be careful about them. The cable or wire attached to the socket will bring you to death if it is leaked. Therefore, be aware and keep them at least 50m to 60m from you.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What Does It Mean When You Turn The Key And It Just Clicks?

It means or indicates that the battery is dead completely. Additionally, if you hear a single click, understand the problem in the starter. There you may also hear rapid sounds. In this case, the problem behind it is the bad alternator. So it depends on what type of noise you hear.

Hearing single and minimal sound doesn’t make a difference. It happens when the alternator goes bad or fails to function properly. As a result, the engine just is idle and can’t produce ignition.

What Does It Mean When Starter Relay Clicks?

Generally, a battery should have a charge of 12.2 volts to 12.4 volts. That means if the battery is 75% charged, the voltage is 12.4V. Otherwise, when the battery has a 50% charge, the voltage is 12.2V. But when less electricity flows through the battery, it can work properly and does not store enough energy.

It also dulls the engine and other things. This prevents your starter relay from transmitting signals to the indicator properly. When the starter relay clicks, no signal is transmitted and no current flows.

Why Is Your Engine Making A Clicking Noise?

A dead battery or a bad starter is the most likely cause of the clicking or ticking noise coming from your engine. However, if your oil tank consists of too much oil, it is also a sign to make this noise. Or, low pressure of oil in the tank is also a reasonable reason.

The other reasons behind this are the lack of proper lubrication, damaged valves, and clogged mufflers. This problem occurs if your engine and its components are not properly lubricated.

Why Does Your Starter Solenoid Keep Clicking?

When the starter motor gets less electrical current through the solenoid, it clicks rapidly. Possibly, the solenoids try their best to engage, but unfortunately, the internal parts become clogged. For this, they can’t work at full rhythm.

But the most probable issue for continuous clicking is a bad battery or starter. So to get rid of this problem, you should change the battery or recharge your battery. You may need to replace the old starter relay to get the utmost results. 

Does A Bad Alternator Make A Clicking Noise?

It is mostly possible to hear a clicking noise if the alternator is damaged or worn. If the battery is going bad, the alternator turns bad. It causes great damage to the motorcycle. And unfortunately, it can produce a clicking or ticking noise that no one wants to hear.

Also, for a bad alternator, an engine can’t turn over smoothly. Moreover, a bad alternator can cause bad smells coming out of the engine and reduce the draining of the bad gas.

Can Spark Plugs Make Ticking Noise?

Spark plugs are very important for a motorcycle. But sometimes, its error deviation becomes quite a problem.  As a result, one of the major problems is clicking or ticking noise. When the spark plugs are lightly attached or break, sparks and exhaust gasses are emitted which seal produces a clicking noise.

How Much Does It Cost To Fix A Starter Motor?

It varies from starter to starter. It also depends on what type of starter motor you choose. If you want to buy a brand new and well-branded starter motor, you may pay around $200 to $1400+ with labor costs and other maintenance costs. Anyway, you can reduce the cost if you are an expert in installing starter motors. 


It is the weirdest thing to hear clicking sounds from your motorcycle when you are trying to start. Motorcycles make clicking sounds when trying to start for many reasons that I explained earlier. Most clicking sounds come from the engine which is like “tick tick tick”.

No one expects this kind of sound in times of emergency. A damaged or drained battery is the common reason if it starts to make unwanted sounds. Hopefully, you will overcome this problem shortly and get rid of these sounds.

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