OP
UTC

Enthusiast
GTS 250
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Location: New York
 
Enthusiast
GTS 250
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Location: New York
UTC quote
My GTS 250 is due for its first servicing. I've had some issues with the kill switch: motor cutting out, unable to start. Same symptoms as others have posted about in the past.

My mechanic told me that the switches are known to be "cheap" and develop faulty connections causing the problems I've had. He told me NEVER to use it to shut off the motor, just to leave it in the run position and use the key. This goes against the advice on the Wiki here but, since I've followed his advice I haven't had a single stall or problem starting.

Should I insist that he replace the switch during the 600 mile warranty service, or just leave well enough alone?

Should I use the switch or not? The mechanic is of the opinion the switch is for emergencies only, not routine starts and stops.

Thanks
@benito avatar
UTC

Moderator
2010 Dragon Red GTS 300 Super, 2018 Grigio Titanio Piaggio Liberty S 150
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Moderator
@benito avatar
2010 Dragon Red GTS 300 Super, 2018 Grigio Titanio Piaggio Liberty S 150
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UTC quote
If your GTS is still in the warranty period, why not get him to replace a faulty part? It would seem reasonable to have a working kill switch on a new Vespa.
@jess avatar
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Petty Tyrant
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Petty Tyrant
@jess avatar
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UTC quote
Using the switch regularly will keep the contacts clean. The bike may be functioning now, but with no use whatsoever I believe the contacts will corrode and become iffy again.

Whether to use the switch or not generally comes down to which side of the Atlantic you live on. The MSF course teaches students here in the US to use the switch every single time, while the UK folks are vehemently opposed to it on the grounds that you might walk away from your bike with the keys in the ignition. To muddy the waters further, dealers in the US say stupid things based on whether or not they think it will reduce headaches, such as people unable to start their scooter because they forgot the kill switch. Of all the opinions out there, the sales guys at dealers have the absolute worst rationale for using (or not using, in this case) the kill switch.

Personally, I am adamantly in favor of using the switch every single time, without exception. It trains you to kill the engine in the case of an emergency without hesitation or thought.
UTC

Hooked
2006 GTS 250ie
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Location: Camp Hill, PA
 
Hooked
2006 GTS 250ie
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Location: Camp Hill, PA
UTC quote
Replace the kill switch under warranty and tell us if made a difference. I agree with using it every ride.
@pauken avatar
UTC

Enthusiast
LX 150 (2009)
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Location: Bowling Green, KY
 
Enthusiast
@pauken avatar
LX 150 (2009)
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Location: Bowling Green, KY
UTC quote
Replace it. While unlikely, your kill switch could malfunction again while on the road and place you in danger (such as killing the engine in traffic) even if you don't use it.

Any malfunctioning "safety device" that has the potential to place you in danger is no longer a safety device, nor just simply benign.

My Honda Accord had a recall for a faulty ignition switch that could unintentionally shut off the engine. I never had it replaced (for free)... until my Accord died on the interstate in thick but fast Atlanta traffic. Not fun. I know that's a little different, as it wasn't intended as a safety device, but it's the same result. I knew it was loose, but I didn't replace it.

Not to stir up a debate... If my throttle cable Toyotaed in the open position, I would much rather thumb the kill switch (from muscle memory) than look down for the key. That's just my opinion.

No matter what side you take on that debate, replace it because it showed faulty symptoms.
@tb avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
Vespa 2005 GT200 & Honda Metro
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@tb avatar
Vespa 2005 GT200 & Honda Metro
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UTC quote
Benito wrote:
If your GTS is still in the warranty period, why not get him to replace a faulty part? It would seem reasonable to have a working kill switch on a new Vespa.
1+ seems like this mechanic (aren't they called Service Technicians?) is not taking his title too heart...fix the switch especially since it's under warranty. In addition an attempt to isolate if it's the switch or something else that could be going on with your electrical system...I hate electrical problems. This also documents the problem just in case down the road you need to file a warranty claim on same.

IMHO, I recommend "getting to know your kill switch". The kill switch is a part of my shut down routine. Just so I congnitively know it's there and working and for any reason (i.e. I go down) and need to hit the kill switch it's embedded in my concious / subconcious mind.
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UTC quote
Back when I lived near you in NJ,
I had my throttle freeze open a couple of times

I definitely recommend knowing exactly where that kill switch is
and making sure that it works
@miguel avatar
UTC

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2009 GTV250 (Gone), 2003 Inder trailer (also gone), 2001 BMW R1100RT
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@miguel avatar
2009 GTV250 (Gone), 2003 Inder trailer (also gone), 2001 BMW R1100RT
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UTC quote
I have used the kill switch on every bike I've ever had. I pull into s parking position or close to it where I let the bike roll back, I hit the kill switch and deal with the key after I've put it on the center or side stand (depending on where I am). I have no logic to it, I just do it. I guess I like to hear what's around me once I've come to a stop. Never had a failure.
Best
Miguel
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Banned
Vespa GTS 300 Super & Vespa P125X
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Vespa GTS 300 Super & Vespa P125X
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UTC quote
I never understood the idea of not using it, I always use mine. If I turn the key and it doesn't start, I know to flip the switch and it will.
OP
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Enthusiast
GTS 250
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Location: New York
 
Enthusiast
GTS 250
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Location: New York
UTC quote
Thank you everyone. Yes, I recall being taught to use the switch as a matter of routine. I shouldn't have second-guessed the matter.

And, I agree...the mechanic has probably dealt with countless "Why won't it start" questions from people who forgot to reset the switch.

I'll get it replaced.
@stickyfrog avatar
UTC

Moderatus Rana
MP3 250 and 2 MP3 500s
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Location: Nashville, Indiana
 
Moderatus Rana
@stickyfrog avatar
MP3 250 and 2 MP3 500s
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UTC quote
I never use it and don't see the point in doing so. You have a key and an ignition. There are a few instances where I can see where using a kill switch could be benificial. Like on a downed bike with the throttle stuck for instance. But for the most part to me it is just another gadget that could break.

I would remove mine but I was told that would be illegal. Is that true?
@turkman avatar
UTC

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2009 GTV 250
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Location: Olympia, WA
 
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@turkman avatar
2009 GTV 250
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UTC quote
Replaced Kill Switch
I was having problems with the engine cutting out. Felt like some one was reaching over and hitting my kill switch really fast. Usually happend when it was hot out and at about 65 mph (gps).

Replaced the kill switch a week ago. Have gone on several short rides and did a long day ride yesterday in the heat (95 degrees in eastern WA). Coming back over the pass I hit I-5 north and cranked it up to 65 mph and better. The new kill switch seems to have solved the problem. A couple more months of riding will tell the truth.
@techguy avatar
UTC

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Kymco P250 Now, P200E in the 80's
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@techguy avatar
Kymco P250 Now, P200E in the 80's
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UTC quote
If its under warranty and broken, get it replaced. PERIOD.

You may not use it every time but if you are dealing with intermittent failures and inconveniences, just get it fixed and move on. If he won't do it, find another dealer.
@coyoteran avatar
UTC

Hooked
1979 P200E, 2006 Burgman, 2005 ET4
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Hooked
@coyoteran avatar
1979 P200E, 2006 Burgman, 2005 ET4
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Location: Colorado Springs, CO
UTC quote
Get it fixed and then do what polite people do in public arenas. Do not mention religion, politics, sexual orientation and kill switches on motorcycles.
@grscum avatar
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2012 BMW G650GS, 2006 GTS,
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@grscum avatar
2012 BMW G650GS, 2006 GTS,
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UTC quote
2006 GTS with 16k miles on it.
Kill switch used every ride.
No problems.
@judy avatar
UTC

World Traveler
2007 LX150 Daring Plum Leonardo Da Vespa
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@judy avatar
2007 LX150 Daring Plum Leonardo Da Vespa
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UTC quote
I need to use mine more Bad habit not to. Jim my neighbor/friend left out of here yesterday on his Harley and i heard it speed up going down the road. Throttle stuck and he was doing 70 when he dropped down to neutral and hit the kill switch Good thing we live in the country and he wasn't on the freeway.
@old_as_dirt avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
2007 GTS
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Location: Harriman, Tennessee, Tn
 
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@old_as_dirt avatar
2007 GTS
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UTC quote
stickyfrog wrote:
I never use it and don't see the point in doing so. You have a key and an ignition. There are a few instances where I can see where using a kill switch could be benificial. Like on a downed bike with the throttle stuck for instance. But for the most part to me it is just another gadget that could break.

I would remove mine but I was told that would be illegal. Is that true?
it is illegal for manufactures not to have them installed when new, never heard of it being illegal to remove it by the owner. Cars don't have them.
OP
UTC

Enthusiast
GTS 250
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Location: New York
 
Enthusiast
GTS 250
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Location: New York
UTC quote
jess wrote:
The MSF course teaches students here in the US to use the switch every single time, while the UK folks are vehemently opposed to it on the grounds that you might walk away from your bike with the keys in the ignition. To muddy the waters further, dealers in the US say stupid things based on whether or not they think it will reduce headaches, such as people unable to start their scooter because they forgot the kill switch. Of all the opinions out there, the sales guys at dealers have the absolute worst rationale for using (or not using, in this case) the kill switch.
Brought the scoot to the shop today. Mentioned the switch. Was told "we tell people not to use them, use the key, the switch is for emergencies only."

So I said, "The MSF suggests using it every ride....."

Response, "Really. Well mostly we get a lot of calls from customers who say they can't start their bike and it's because they forgot to move the switch."

I asked them to check/replace it as needed since it's still under warranty.
@jess avatar
UTC

Petty Tyrant
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Petty Tyrant
@jess avatar
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UTC quote
Bobonli wrote:
jess wrote:
The MSF course teaches students here in the US to use the switch every single time, while the UK folks are vehemently opposed to it on the grounds that you might walk away from your bike with the keys in the ignition. To muddy the waters further, dealers in the US say stupid things based on whether or not they think it will reduce headaches, such as people unable to start their scooter because they forgot the kill switch. Of all the opinions out there, the sales guys at dealers have the absolute worst rationale for using (or not using, in this case) the kill switch.
Brought the scoot to the shop today. Mentioned the switch. Was told "we tell people not to use them, use the key, the switch is for emergencies only."

So I said, "The MSF suggests using it every ride....."

Response, "Really. Well mostly we get a lot of calls from customers who say they can't start their bike and it's because they forgot to move the switch."

I asked them to check/replace it as needed since it's still under warranty.
Ha!
@copper_dolphin avatar
UTC

Molto Verboso
LX150 Darling Plum; GTS 250 Dragon Red; Honda Big Ruckus Demented Bastard
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Location: Sacramento, Ca.
 
Molto Verboso
@copper_dolphin avatar
LX150 Darling Plum; GTS 250 Dragon Red; Honda Big Ruckus Demented Bastard
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UTC quote
If nothing else replace it under warrenty, that the numbers will be reported and some number muncher will pop out a report and maybe, just maybe they will start using better switches.
Not going to help us that ride one already but might help the brand in the future.......

PS I would have been supper sneeky and put a mark on the switch, just so I could confirm they changed it..... But then I have a bad veiw of the morals / professionalism of "professionals"
⬆️    About 3 years elapsed    ⬇️
UTC

Hooked
2009 250 GTS Super
Joined: UTC
Posts: 455
Location: pasadena, los angeles
 
Hooked
2009 250 GTS Super
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Posts: 455
Location: pasadena, los angeles
UTC quote
how do you replace the kill switch? where do you buy the part?
@raiderfn31 avatar
UTC

Banned
PGO Buddy 150 "St Tropez" imported by Genuine scooter co.
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Location: Charlotte
 
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@raiderfn31 avatar
PGO Buddy 150 "St Tropez" imported by Genuine scooter co.
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UTC quote
jess wrote:
Using the switch regularly will keep the contacts clean. The bike may be functioning now, but with no use whatsoever I believe the contacts will corrode and become iffy again.
Got me
@dooglas avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
GTS 300ABS, Buddy 125, Buddy Kick 125
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Location: Oregon City, OR
 
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@dooglas avatar
GTS 300ABS, Buddy 125, Buddy Kick 125
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Location: Oregon City, OR
UTC quote
Bobonli wrote:
My mechanic told me that the switches are known to be "cheap" and develop faulty connections causing the problems I've had. He told me NEVER to use it to shut off the motor, just to leave it in the run position and use the key.
The problem with following this advice is that the contacts on the kill switch are open to moisture and corrode if not used routinely. So, not using the kill switch is likely to result in a kill switch failure. My advice is to use it, and if it fails - replace it. A bit of dielectric grease on the contacts doesn't hurt, of course.
noeltazz wrote:
how do you replace the kill switch? where do you buy the part?
Any Vespa dealer.
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