Sportsman 850 died while riding, wont start - Polaris ATV Forum
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-04-2018, 11:36 AM Thread Starter
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Sportsman 850 died while riding, wont start

Folks, I have a 2018 sportsman 850 highlifter with under 20 hours on the machine. Last weekend I rolled it in the water and it was completely submerged upside down, rolled it back over and shut it off. Afterwards I had it towed home and drained everything to include 7 oil changes & filters, air filter, and spark plugs. Luckily, after all the work being done the machine started and ran great and had plenty of power. The screen was acting a little funny cutting in/out and had a delay. So I rode it 3 more times throughout the week and had it in the water/mud again. Now my problem began this past weekend only a few minutes into my ride when it bogged out and died on me in the trail. When trying to start the quad it clicks once like the battery is dead, so I replaced the battery with a new one. Now the quad cranks 1 or 2 times if im lucky but never starts. I removed the belt which is fine. Any thoughts, starter, selonoid??

Last edited by teejam171; 09-04-2018 at 11:39 AM.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-05-2018, 06:41 AM
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I'm surprised others more experienced with the 850 haven't responded by now.

I'm going to guess the starter motor got water in it and has failed or the engine has failed due to metal to metal contact.

These are just wild ass guesses based on the limited and little information given. Good luck.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-05-2018, 09:37 AM
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Bump the starter with 12V. If that don't spin it you have to pop the clutch cover off and try to turn the motor by hand. That's not a normal sequence to starting a motor but under the circumstances I would want to eliminate the possibility of the motor being broke

2011 Sportsman® 800 EFI
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-06-2018, 09:16 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by latebird View Post
I'm surprised others more experienced with the 850 haven't responded by now.

I'm going to guess the starter motor got water in it and has failed or the engine has failed due to metal to metal contact.

These are just wild ass guesses based on the limited and little information given. Good luck.
Ok so yesterday I swapped starters out with my other 850 and was able to get the machine to turn rite over and run. However, it wouldn't idle and it was running very hot (the header pipe was orange). I figured it had something to do with the new NGK plugs that I put in after this whole incident. I pulled them out, they were burnt crisp black, so I put the old plugs back in and it ran much cooler, smoother, and would idle. Now the problem is each time I flip the gas quickly and let off the quad will conk out and shut off roughly. When on the throttle and idle the motor sounds fine. But I am hearing a sound from the clutch area but not sure if this would affect the way it runs. Note: The belt cover is removed and belt is in great shape. This is driving me nuts any help would be appreciated..
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-06-2018, 03:05 PM
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So, I have modified my atv to look and run similar to the highlifter sportsman. When you do a quick stab on the throttle and it cuts out, could be caused by a sticking or miss adjusted throttle cable. To confirm this you could open the top of the thumb throttle cover and place a small zip tie in between the contacts. If you can flip the throttle and it not stall, I would make sure the throttle cable is adjust properly and inspect it to make sure it's not binding on anything. I have had this happen to me a lot and found that if the gap is not set properly in the throttle, quick stabs can cause the the bike to stall out quickly.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-07-2018, 03:55 PM
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How many parts are you going to swap out and spend money on that you didn't need based on your own guesses and others on the Internet who may or may not know what they're talking about. Maybe it's time to take it to a dealer and spend good money to have it properly diagnosed and fixed. It appears to me that you have several independent problems going on which may have started as a chain reaction from the original problem...or not.
That being said, my "guess" based on the black spark plugs is you need a valve adjusment and probably your valve seats cleaned of carbon build up. Both these coditions would cause the motor not to start due to low comression. However, if you were lucky enough to get one last start out of it, it would actually run pretty good.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-11-2018, 08:44 AM Thread Starter
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If you read my second post correctly I did get the thing running but it wont idle and dies out after quick flips on the throttle.. I will be doing a compression test on it and checking other things like the throttle cable inside the housing as stated by Gulf. Also havnt spent any money yet besides on a battery which it needed because im swapping the parts from my other brand new 850..
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-11-2018, 10:18 AM
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Take off all the plastics and all the snorkels, the snorkels hold water when the Quad is completely underwater. New plugs are not in order, mine have been through 3 dunking and have survived. With all the plastics off, now is the time to do some mud maintenance. Take apart all the electric connections you can find, and and a dab a di-electric grease, I also like to use a spray, LPS-1 found at Ace, to keep water out of places I don't want it. I spray everything, fans, cables, levers, anything that can rust or bind up. Grease the bushings every other time out, it helps. I have 3 Uni-filters, when one is wet, run another. Wash the bike ever time out, or it will turn into one piece of solid crap.
There is some water somewhere in your air intake snorkel, take it off now with the plastics off and remove the drain plug on the bottom of the air box by the intake. There's water trapped somewhere. New air filer. If it still won't accept full throttle, let it dry for a week in the sun, then try again. Run some Sea Foam, or Marvel Mystery Oil for the first oil change in the engine, transmission, and diffs to get the water on the surfaces in there.


Keep going deep.

must modify

Last edited by gearheadesw1; 09-11-2018 at 10:25 AM.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-11-2018, 10:26 AM Thread Starter
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Great advice Gearhead, im actually in the process of dielectric greasing all connections. I havnt heard of the LPS-1 but I will be purchasing asap. Ive had the snorks off and drained with a new air filter so im good on that note. Thanks
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-11-2018, 12:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gulf550 View Post
When you do a quick stab on the throttle and it cuts out, could be caused by a sticking or miss adjusted throttle cable. To confirm this you could open the top of the thumb throttle cover and place a small zip tie in between the contacts.
This is worth a try!
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