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Polaris Wide Track 04 won't start

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  • Polaris Wide Track 04 won't start

    i have a Polaris wide track that I can't get started. It cranks but won't start. I'm helping someone else try to get this going. It sat for a while maybe over the summer with no gas treatment in it. I just need some Ideas about what to do first. I'll put good gas in, and check the plugs and of coarse make sure the gas is turned on,make sure the carbs are cleaned. Anything else? I'll also put heat in. Warm it up. It's at a lodge on Finger Lake. Thanks Mike

  • #2
    Fuel tank hose

    This is probably not your problem. But I'm posting this for reference in case someone has this problem. I too have a 04 Polaris Widetrack. And I love it. But I too couldn't get it started a couple of falls ago. I ran through all the basics ... nothing. Then I took off the gas tank to drain it dry. And in taking it off I heard something rattle inside. I looked inside and the plastic fuel hose INSIDE the tank had decomposed, become brittle and broken off. That meant that even though the tank was 1/3 full - no gas was getting into the gas line intake.

    I'm not sure what caused this. If it was rancid fuel I had in the tank (though I doubt this ... I'm careful about my fuel). Or ... if that year Polaris had a bad batch of fuel tank hoses. Anyway - to fix it I went to NAPA and got some plastic hose the same diameter. Then I unscrewed the gas line connector to the tank, replaced the hose, put it back together and no problems since.

    Moral of the story - take a quick look into the gas tank and make sure the intake hose is attached and in good shape. Make sure it is not chalky white looking and when you push on it it is still flexible.


    • #3
      Anything can happen an will. I'll get some hose before I go out to the lodge. Anyone with other good ideas let me know. Thanks for taking the time.



      • #4
        I also have a Polaris wt, the problem may be no spark, no gas, or too much gas.
        1. I would pull the sparkplug and check for spark.
        2. Check the gas line for gas. Is the shut-off turn off?
        3. I would try to start the engine. Look at the sparkplug and see if it wet. If it is not wet put a little gas in the cylinder no more than a spoon full. Try to start again. If it tries to start you have a no gas problem.

        4. If the sparkplugs are wet you may have the bottom of the engine full of gas. There are two plugs in the front of the engine (down low) 10-11-12mm these are for draining the engine. What may have happen is if he did not turn off the fuel shut-off gas may leaks into the engine.


        • #5
          Gas flow to engine

          Rutting Moose has good advice. But for what it's worth I'd like to add that I had a 97 WT before my 04 WT. Both of these machines had the same 500 cc engine. With the 97 WT I would always have to turn off the fuel line shut-off valve when I stopped it, or gas would drain into the engine like Rutting Moose says. With my 04 WT I never have to turn off the fuel line shut-off valve. My 04 WT just does not have this same gas line flooding problem that the 97 WT did. But I'm not saying that you should discount this situation Mike. I'd play it safe and drain the engine like RM said if it comes to it.

          Actually - I never drained my 97 WT when I had the flooding problem. I'd just pull the plugs and cycle the engine for a bit using the electric start with the gas line shutoff turned off. That got enough gas out of the engine so that it would start.


          • #6
            IF there's no spark? With all the warm/cold cycles and the condensation that comes with it I'd make sure the throttle override is functioning properly. If in doubt, douse the throttle with isopropyl and cycle it a few times. If there IS spark? I'd prime it with fuel through the plug holes and try to get it to run long enough for the fuel pump to get some gas to the engine. I wouldn't be concerned with the fuel quality unless you have reason to believe there's water in it. If all else fails try to preheat the carbs. Just a little ice can make for big frustration.


            • #7
              good advice so far, interesting about the flooding engines haven't heard that one before.

              Just remember your three basic principles - air, fuel, spark - four I guess with compression and trouble shoot from there with the simple stuff first

              Air - usually extremely simple to verify nothing is obstructing the carbs or air intake

              Fuel - As stated check the simple fuel stuff (does it have fuel? is the valve open?) After trying to start for a bit are the plugs wet? Do they smell of fuel? also many sleds have some clear fuel hose somewhere in the system making it easy to tell if fuel is flowing. Fuel filter could be clogged.

              Spark - verify that the plugs throw a good strong spark, verify that they are the correct plug and are gapped properly - ensure good connections for coil wire and plug wires

              Compression - this is unlikely to be your problem (fuel or spark is it the vast majority of the time) While you can tell if there is mild compression by jamming your thumb against the spark plug hole you really can't tell if it's enough. it's best to bring a compression gauge with appropriate adapters and verify two things 1) that both cylinders have reasonable compression and 2) that they are not drastically different (I think within 10psi of each other is pretty good rule of thumb)

              Doesn't really help you solve any of those conditions but that's how I'd go about troubleshooting to start with.


              • #8
                I had the same problem this summer when i tried to start and move my machine at the lake. Pulled like hell on it. Then pulled the plugs poured in gas got to run on the gas poured in but then would die. Did this a couple more times before i started looking for the problem. Come to find out someone had taken the fuel line and filter and did not tell me! Funny how things end up missing when there is no parts house to run to.


                • #9
                  Well, guys I think we have hit on everything that could be causing this. I had some of the ideas but not all. I called Polaris in town and you guys are right on. They said the same things. Flooding is a real po[siblity. Spark as we all know makes things happen also or not. I will go out on Friday and go thru these things in order.
                  I bet I can get it started. I'll let you know the outcome.
                  Thanks again for all the time and expertise.




                  • #10
                    All good stuff, I might add mine has a lines off the bottem of carbs, with little valves, to make draining float bowl easier. Also one yr had problem with the line that operates the fuel pump,It goes from fuel pump to block of the engine underneath the carbs. pull it off and blow thru it make sure no condensation build up there.+1 to what Mr. Pid said too, Could unplug it.The plug on mine are right where the hood closes on the handle bar. unplugged mine about 10 yrs ago taped it off. But! it will make that red kill switch not work. Let us Know what you come up with! Always like a good story.
                    Remember, Mother nature has no forgiveness for stupidity.
                    If you don't care where you are, your not lost


                    • #11
                      1. Fuel
                      2. Air
                      3. and a spark at the right time.


                      • #12
                        Got it fixed. Took about 15 minutes. Looked at it and turned the CHOKE to off. It had been on full. Plugs were great,no water but added some heet,alittle starting fluid and three pulls at full choke with alittle gas and it started. Then to half choke and then off. Ran great. Starts on the first pull every time. They latter admitted they had some guy from New York on it. Needless to say he flooded it completely out and left it.
                        Works Now!!!


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