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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Peoria,IL
    Posts
    94

    Default Polaris Starter Problems

    Has anyone had any issues with Polaris starters. Have a 2018 800 Switchback went to start it for 1st time of the season and starter making a grinding noise and wont activate to start. I can pull start and it starts on 2nd pull. Does anyone have any ideas what it could be?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Red Wing, MN
    Posts
    499

    Default

    I just sold a 2012 Polaris Rush and over the last few years I had the same issue. Did you keep the battery on a tender this summer? They need a really good battery to spin the bendix fast enough to make contact with the ring gear.
    One season into a new battery and I had the same problem, looked for any other reason for this to happen, in the end I replaced the battery under warranty fortunately and it started right up. Maybe got a bad battery who knows.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Peoria,IL
    Posts
    94

    Default

    yes I had the battery on a tender all summer. Took it off the tender put in the machine same day and wouldn't start showed I had 13.5 volts

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    putnam county ohio
    Posts
    321

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by heitz66 View Post
    yes I had the battery on a tender all summer. Took it off the tender put in the machine same day and wouldn't start showed I had 13.5 volts
    Probably should have the battery load tested, sure didn't hook it up backwards by chance? I'v seen it done and the starter actually spins backwards and bendix wont throw out

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    se mn
    Posts
    2,209

    Default

    Have you looked at the flywheel? Polaris used the wrong loctite for a time and those little bolts that hold the flywheel on would come loose. Ask me how I know.... 15 hours into the Valentine 500CIMG7037.jpg Finished the ride but I don't know how that didn't destroy the wiring harness when it let go...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Red Wing, MN
    Posts
    499

    Default

    I guess I would start by load testing the battery as stated above first, then check voltage coming from the key. Next check voltage across the solenoid from battery and also to the starter and make sure it is working correctly.

    I also had the first battery charging all summer long but on a smart charger, seemed it cooked the battery. The next season I bought another battery tender and when I put the battery back in the sled about a month ago it fired right up, maybe the same thing happened to yours. Just a thought.

    You can also test the starter to make sure that’s not the issue as well, not may parts that can cause the issue, a little patience and testing will reveal the problem. You have to have 12 volts from the key, the solenoid has to be working correctly and the starter has to work as well then as long as the battery is good it should start.

    A lot of very smart people on the board that I’m sure will chime in soon on how to go about all the testing, I can do it but I’m not very good at explaining how to do it. Good luck and keep us informed.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Lakeville, MN
    Posts
    2,504

    Default

    I found on mine, where the gear on the end of the cable wasn’t moving towards the ring gear on the clutch to engage it. Get your hands down in there and manually spin/move that little gear to see it protrudes towards the ring gear. Mine was sticking until I moved it by hand, then you can put a little silicone spray in there to lubricate it so it moves on its own when you hit the starter. Don’t put much as it will collect belt dust, but just enough so it slides. In the 6000+ miles I put on, I think I did that twice last year.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Chicago Burbs
    Posts
    26

    Default

    I had the same issue, the shaft that engages the flywheel sticks. It accumulates rust or corrosion and wont engage. You need to clean it and spray it with WD 40, mine cleaned up and worked for the rest of the season.
    Good Luck

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    SC WISCONSIN
    Posts
    319

    Default

    I had the same problem on a 2014. I figured making that sound the battery was good and the starter was messed up, ended up being the battery just wasnt good enough.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Red Wing, MN
    Posts
    499

    Default

    I ended up replacing the whole starter bendix which is a pain to get to. I had to remove the y-pipe to gain access. Bought one from Dennis Kirk which broke when it got cold last season. With my son riding it burned up a piston, pulled the engine to fix it and replaced bendix with oem while the engine was out. You really can’t make up the issues I had with that starter system. I really think the whole problem is the flex shaft, poor design in my opinion. Also why do they sound like a bucket of bolts when starting, I was watching YouTube with one of the Lester’s starting a 2020 Polaris and it had the same grinding sound and he made the same comment.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Greenland, MI
    Posts
    1,517

    Default

    Correct, they get sticky and need lubrication. Sometimes they even need to be shimmed to engage properly. This has been a ongoing problem but it is curable.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Green Bay, WI
    Posts
    1,983

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by slimcake View Post
    Have you looked at the flywheel? Polaris used the wrong loctite for a time and those little bolts that hold the flywheel on would come loose. Ask me how I know.... 15 hours into the Valentine 500CIMG7037.jpg Finished the ride but I don't know how that didn't destroy the wiring harness when it let go...
    Ever listen to Polaris Dan start his 800, whew..maybe the same issue..sounds like bolts in a blender.

    By the way, P.D.where you at?

    Bear

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    115

    Default

    the last 2 years Ive put in new batteries thinking that was the problem,(2017 SB 800) after a bunch of thread searching online, I found this guy thats always rambling and usually not making much sense, he posted, "you gotta kick it in the area of your right knee, thats where a ground is that usually gets crappy over the years" so first trip of the year last year, kicked the sled about 2 times and its started ever since.... I know this isnt the same issue, but I will never forget that crazy dude's suggestion. Im getting ready to take it apart and try to fix it the correct way.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Peoria,IL
    Posts
    94

    Default

    Just heard back form the dealer. Said it was a bad battery. Starter is working fine now.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Red Wing, MN
    Posts
    499

    Default

    Glad you figured it out. Usually is a bad battery. Have a great winter.

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