How to Remove a Choke Cable

Lead Image
  • 1-2 hours
  • Beginner
  • 25-50
What You'll Need
Wrench kit
Needle nose pliers
New choke cable

The choke cable determines how much fuel flows into the carburetor. You need a rich mix when you start and this will become leaner as the engine warms. Over time, the choke cable might stretch or even break. When this happens, you need to remove it and fit a new one. Removing a choke cable isn’t an especially complex job and doesn’t even require any special tools.

Step 1 - Securing the Motorcycle

You need to have the motorcycle secure in order to remove the choke cable. To do this, you should put it on a lift. Failing that, you can also use a motorcycle jack or even just have it on the kickstand, although you won’t find it as stable.

Step 2 - Locate the Choke Cable

The choke cable runs from the handlebars of the motorcycle into the engine, specifically to the carburetor. It’s easy to spot and trace along the frame. In some models you’ll need to remove the seat, the gas tank and the radiator cover panel. This lets you see the full length of the choke cable that you need to remove.

Step 3 - Remove From the Engine

As you look at the carburetor, you’ll be able to see how it’s held in place. There’s a boot that goes into a jet. It’s held in place by a screw and the jet is held in place by a spring.

Examine how it’s all connected and you’ll see that the boot should only be hand tight on the screw. Depending on the make of motorcycle, you won’t be able to reach it with your fingers. The ideal way to loosen it is with a pair of needle nose pliers that will give you better access. Loosen the boot to give you access to the jet. Remove the jet by using your screwdriver to unscrew it.

Step 4 - Take Out the Cable

Now you’ll be able to pull the whole assembly, including the boot and the jet, away from the engine. From here you’ll be able to see how the choke cable fits into the carburetor.

Go to the front of the motorcycle and see where the choke control is on the handlebars. At the back of it you’ll see an adjuster. This allows you to alter the tension of the cable. Use your wrench to loosen it a little. You should go to the point where there’s plenty of slack in the cable. You should now be able to unhook the choke cable from the carburetor.

Step 5 - Remove From the Handlebars

With one end of the choke cable free, you’ll now be able to pull it along the frame, removing an brackets that might impede it. When it’s free, unbolt the locking clips at the back of the handlebars and pull the choke cable through. If you’re putting in a new choke cable, don’t be surprised if it appears shorter than the old one; it won’t have had chance to stretch out yet.