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Old 02-28-2010, 12:45 AM
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500 EFI timing?

I've got two '09 500 EFI's, both with about an hour/10 miles on them. One is running great, the other is just a bit down on power, will sometimes die when idling, will sometimes backfire when starting, and has a smoky exhaust (not enough to get a good color, but blue or black-ish and rich smelling.)

I'm hoping this is just a timing issue? I am less inclined with each start to believe it's just a break-in symptom, unless someone else can share similar symptoms during break-in.

Any other ideas?
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Old 02-28-2010, 05:46 AM
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almost sounds like a ring didnt seat.

dont quote me on it, but im not sure the timing is adjustable. i believe it is electrical from the ECU, not mechanical. i dont know at this point, let me do some research of my own
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Old 02-28-2010, 11:48 AM
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Hey blueline, I was hoping you'd see this. Owners manual shows timing off as a possible cause of backfires, so hopefully it's adjustable. I can't really tell if it's oily or fuely in the exhaust, but it's definitely "something." So I was hoping timing but yeah, a ring seating could fit too. It does seem to smoke more after it's shut off, not as noticeable when it's running. What are the odds the dealer will give me grief about break-in procedures, you think? I'm going to call them tomorrow (still missing some paperwork) and let them know I'm bringing it in next week for them to take a look. Don't worry, I won't quote you (though I may take down the thread about getting them buried in the snow when I picked them up - in case they're on here!)
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Old 02-28-2010, 02:14 PM
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well, the first thing i will say about break-ins is to dont be afraid to run the hard. i personally think and believe that with all the better technology we have in materials and machining parts and the tolerances have gotten so much tighter that it is actually good to get the pressure and RPMs up right off the bat to help the skirts seal against the cylinder wall. also, there is NOTHING in your sale contract that says "break them in this way or your warranty is null and void" so i wouldnt worry about the snow pictures at all! those can not go against you in any way.

i guess i should have been more specific, the timing is not adjustable by you. it would have to be adjusted by the dealer, because they have a special computer program called Digital Wrech that they plug your machine into, and can look at all these crazy things. and just FYI, your onboard computer keeps track of the machines highest RPM and highest engine temp it has ever seen, and when plugged into digital wrench, the mechanic can look at those numbers and get a good idea how hard the engine has been ran before. but again, not much to be worried about there. but anyway, the mechanic can advance or retard you timing on the computer. it may also bo something like the TPS sensor or the crank position sensor need to just be recalibrated, that can also be done by the mechanic on the computer.

these EFI quads are a lot like cars now. a lot of the tweaking has to be done by the dealer on the special computer program, as most stuff is electrical now, not mechanical, for better or worse. i assume being so new they are still under warranty? all cost should be covered under warranty, and if not by chance, tell the dealer to submit a goodwill waranty for the mechanic's labor because they are so new. goodwill warranties are a for sure thing, but if you are out of warranty, it should be accepted on something like this

side note: digital wrench shows everything. it'll show the air intake temp, it'll show how many time a plug has fired, when the machine is running and hooked to the computer, it will show piston position, literally every little stat it shows on the screen. our mechanic showed me this one time. i was blown away by all the things you can look at in real time, and all the history the ECU stores. if you get the chance to watch a polaris tech do this, take the opportunity, its really crazy to watch

Last edited by blueline15; 02-28-2010 at 02:17 PM.
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Old 02-28-2010, 03:04 PM
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Thanks blueline, another informed, helpful, timely, thorough reply. You make this forum kick ass.

I'll feel better going to the dealer with a pro's opinion that my non-babied first run shouldn't be an issue (even though I will keep those opinions to myself - can't imagine "this guy on the internet said..." would help anyone.) They are still under a 6-month warranty and I'm not worried about them pulling the history; max RPM and temp shouldn't be too onerous, only really ran them on that snow day and didn't get into the throttle too awful much then except for a few minutes trying to rock 'em out.

I didn't figure it was settable by a human, but good to know it can be set. I will keep my opinions as to causes to myself and let the dealer have their look without my guesses. I'll just point to the symptoms.

Will report back when I hear from them, probably won't be until next week though since I'm traveling for work this week.

Last edited by uncre8tv; 02-28-2010 at 03:06 PM.
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Old 02-28-2010, 03:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uncre8tv View Post
Thanks blueline, another informed, helpful, timely, thorough reply. You make this forum kick ass.

I'll feel better going to the dealer with a pro's opinion that my non-babied first run shouldn't be an issue (even though I will keep those opinions to myself - can't imagine "this guy on the internet said..." would help anyone.) They are still under a 6-month warranty and I'm not worried about them pulling the history; max RPM and temp shouldn't be too onerous, only really ran them on that snow day and didn't get into the throttle too awful much then except for a few minutes trying to rock 'em out.

I didn't figure it was settable by a human, but good to know it can be set. I will keep my opinions as to causes to myself and let the dealer have their look without my guesses. I'll just point to the symptoms.

Will report back when I hear from them, probably won't be until next week though since I'm traveling for work this week.
thank you. i appreciate that.

if you have 20 mins to spare some time, read this article about engine break-in procedures. i have to say i really agree with this article. should make you feel better. and dont even sweat the RPM and temp thing, wont be a factor for you.

an example when it was actually useful was on a watercraft, trying to figure out a problem, asked the guy if the watercraft had ever been jumped. that spikes engine RPM really high when its out of the water. he said no, never. but the ECU recalled RPM's over 10,000 which meant it had been jumped out of water. we then got the problem fixed and off he went. its more of a diagnostic tool for the mechanic then a "get you in trouble tool"

im going to guess that digital wrench program is going to turn up something that isnt quite right. and all should be free to you. so ill be waiting to hear what they found.
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Old 03-05-2010, 04:47 PM
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uncre8tv, I have a coworker with an 09 500efi that had the same symptoms. He found the intake tube bolts vibrated loose which created a very large unmetered are leak. These are the two bolts (6mm hex head) that bolt the intake tube to the engine. One of the bolts had fallen out completely. There is a paper gasket, so make sure it is still in good condition. I would use blue loctite (not red loctite) incase you need to take it apart in the future. Hope this helps, may save you a trip to the dealer.
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Old 03-05-2010, 05:28 PM
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Thanks DWS, I'll take a look at that when I get home (am out of town this weekend for work - first nice weekend in KC too - boo!)

I've got an appointment to drop it off at the dealer Tuesday though. May still take it in even if I find that issue as it seems to be a little bit of a Friday afternoon job on the assembly (found one of the plastic button rivet things missing, a few other odds and ends loose on this bike.)
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Old 03-17-2010, 04:20 AM
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Ok. Finally got it into the dealer and they took a look. Called me and said they couldn't find anything wrong. The "sometimes" issue with idle/backfire I could see chalking up to a cold machine. The smoky exhaust is not something I am willing to shrug off as easily. Can anyone else with a 500 EFI report smoky (blue/black not white or steam) exhaust after a short (10min) run and shutdown? The other quad purchased at the same time doesn't do this. Seems a pretty simple one to look at and either say "yep, that's not right" or "no, they all do that" (at which point I ask "then why doesn't the red one?") .. the "no, nothing to see here" response is annoying to say the least.

I'll probably go pick it up Saturday (dealer is a little over an hour from home) before I do I will confirm the red one doesn't produce the smoke and see if I can show them what I am talking about Saturday.
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Old 03-17-2010, 11:13 AM
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Called and talked to the tech just now, he said the smoke is due to it not being broken in yet. Said I should give it a few more runs for the rings to seal. I'll definitely get it out a few more times before my big Colorado trips this summer, and if it's still doing it after several hours/miles see about having another look.
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