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Discussion Starter #1
I've been looking for a good used Polaris Sportsman 500 HO Touring AWD/4X4. I have one in mind I'm suppose to go look at Tuesday morning, it's a 2008 year model 500HO Touring. I guess my question is how to go about checking to make sure the AWD/4X4 is working like it should be?

If I'm understanding this AWD on the Polaris it does not engage fully until the back tires start to spin or do I have that all wrong IDK?

I'm thinking the place where I'm going to look at this 500 will have a vacant lot next to it to try out the ATV, but it's been raining a lot in my area. There again the owner/seller has this thing like show room condition right now (cleaned up nice).

I'm not to knowledgeable with the Polaris Sportsman because I've never owned one before. I'm getting there little by little though lol. Any thoughts would be helpful. :smile

Tony
 

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Correct, the front does not engage till rear spin is detected.
I think there is a mode (on my 2005 anyway) in diagnostics that shows if the resistance is correct for awd system but I'm not positive on that. In 14 years I have never had an issue with the 4wd not working when needed.
Good Luck and enjoy
 

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I've been looking for a good used Polaris Sportsman 500 HO Touring AWD/4X4. I have one in mind I'm suppose to go look at Tuesday morning, it's a 2008 year model 500HO Touring. I guess my question is how to go about checking to make sure the AWD/4X4 is working like it should be?

If I'm understanding this AWD on the Polaris it does not engage fully until the back tires start to spin or do I have that all wrong IDK?

I'm thinking the place where I'm going to look at this 500 will have a vacant lot next to it to try out the ATV, but it's been raining a lot in my area. There again the owner/seller has this thing like show room condition right now (cleaned up nice).

I'm not to knowledgeable with the Polaris Sportsman because I've never owned one before. I'm getting there little by little though lol. Any thoughts would be helpful. :smile

Tony
The only REAL way to check a machine out thoroughly is to get all four wheels off the ground Tony. Then you can wiggle the wheels to check bearings, bushings, tie rods etc. for play. Start it up while lifted so you can put it in gear and try the AWD functioning. While running and in gear, flip the AWD switch give it a little fuel and when the rears start to turn the fronts should catch smoothly and turn as well. Flip the switch off and it should disengage smoothly so the fronts stop turning. Try it in reverse too. AWD should only work in R when you press the yellow reverse override button on the left handlebar. That's a safety feature.
Ask the seller if he has an atv jack to get all 4's off the ground or should you bring one with you. You can use a floor jack and jack stands to accomplish the same thing but you MUST get all 4 wheels off the ground. If he wants to sell the machine and has nothing to hide he shouldn't care a bit. You can't really tell much about one just riding it around a parking lot other than if it starts and stops good, the lights work and it doesn't make any strange noises. You MUST wear old clothes, get dirty, put hands-on, use a bright flashlight and get down to look CLOSELY at everything.
In addition to the things above, look for leaks, axle boots torn, bent stuff, frame cracks, wires frayed or cobbled up, etc. Also pull the seat off and check the air filter first thing. A nasty air filter is a clear sign that other maintenance is probably lacking too no matter how clean the exterior is. Ask about maintenance/repair records if any. Most guys that REALLY take care of a machine will have records because that's the only way to keep track of what's been done. If service was done by a dealer you can take the VIN to any dealership and they can pull all the records on the computer. You might ask about that on the phone beforehand and get the VIN from the seller to check it out before you go.
After a thorough inspection I then take the seller's price and deduct the cost of correcting any problems I found and make an offer based on that. Bushings and bearings are around a couple hundred dollars for each end of the machine. Tie rods about $100. Brakes about the same. Ball joints about the same. Tires around $400-$500 according to what you buy. And of course those estimates are for ME doing the repairs. I think most shops now charge anywhere from $80-$100+ per hour for labor and a big markup on parts so you need to consider that in your calculations. You also need to consider any accessories he's added and allow some reasonable credit back for things like winch, storage, aftermarket tires/wheels, rack extenders, etc.
Check the estimated blue book value through Kelley Blue Book and NADA online so you know a ballpark value before you go. Print them out and take with you. He probably has and that gets both seller and buyer on the same page. Educate yourself before you go and you should both leave satisfied with the deal you've made. :grin

Good luck and let us know how it goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I've been looking for a good used Polaris Sportsman 500 HO Touring AWD/4X4. I have one in mind I'm suppose to go look at Tuesday morning, it's a 2008 year model 500HO Touring. I guess my question is how to go about checking to make sure the AWD/4X4 is working like it should be?

If I'm understanding this AWD on the Polaris it does not engage fully until the back tires start to spin or do I have that all wrong IDK?

I'm thinking the place where I'm going to look at this 500 will have a vacant lot next to it to try out the ATV, but it's been raining a lot in my area. There again the owner/seller has this thing like show room condition right now (cleaned up nice).

I'm not to knowledgeable with the Polaris Sportsman because I've never owned one before. I'm getting there little by little though lol. Any thoughts would be helpful. :smile

Tony
The only REAL way to check a machine out thoroughly is to get all four wheels off the ground Tony. Then you can wiggle the wheels to check bearings, bushings, tie rods etc. for play. Start it up while lifted so you can put it in gear and try the AWD functioning. While running and in gear, flip the AWD switch give it a little fuel and when the rears start to turn the fronts should catch smoothly and turn as well. Flip the switch off and it should disengage smoothly so the fronts stop turning. Try it in reverse too. AWD should only work in R when you press the yellow reverse override button on the left handlebar. That's a safety feature.
Ask the seller if he has an atv jack to get all 4's off the ground or should you bring one with you. You can use a floor jack and jack stands to accomplish the same thing but you MUST get all 4 wheels off the ground. If he wants to sell the machine and has nothing to hide he shouldn't care a bit. You can't really tell much about one just riding it around a parking lot other than if it starts and stops good, the lights work and it doesn't make any strange noises. You MUST wear old clothes, get dirty, put hands-on, use a bright flashlight and get down to look CLOSELY at everything.
In addition to the things above, look for leaks, axle boots torn, bent stuff, frame cracks, wires frayed or cobbled up, etc. Also pull the seat off and check the air filter first thing. A nasty air filter is a clear sign that other maintenance is probably lacking too no matter how clean the exterior is. Ask about maintenance/repair records if any. Most guys that REALLY take care of a machine will have records because that's the only way to keep track of what's been done. If service was done by a dealer you can take the VIN to any dealership and they can pull all the records on the computer. You might ask about that on the phone beforehand and get the VIN from the seller to check it out before you go.
After a thorough inspection I then take the seller's price and deduct the cost of correcting any problems I found and make an offer based on that. Bushings and bearings are around a couple hundred dollars for each end of the machine. Tie rods about $100. Brakes about the same. Ball joints about the same. Tires around $400-$500 according to what you buy. And of course those estimates are for ME doing the repairs. I think most shops now charge anywhere from $80-$100+ per hour for labor and a big markup on parts so you need to consider that in your calculations. You also need to consider any accessories he's added and allow some reasonable credit back for things like winch, storage, aftermarket tires/wheels, rack extenders, etc.
Check the estimated blue book value through Kelley Blue Book and NADA online so you know a ballpark value before you go. Print them out and take with you. He probably has and that gets both seller and buyer on the same page. Educate yourself before you go and you should both leave satisfied with the deal you've made. :grin

Good luck and let us know how it goes.
First off thanks guys for the replies. I've been riding ATV's for a good while and I've owned different brands of ATV's ,but I've never owned a Polaris. I am by no means a expert or expert mechanic lol. I'd say I'm a shade tree mechanic you might say, lol.

You answered my question though on the AWD by jacking it up with all four wheels off the ground. I've done that before with other 4x4 Atv's to check out and see if the 4x4 was working correctly. I just didn't know if you could do the same with the Polaris AWD. In my mind I was thinking the rear tire had to have a slip ground contact spin and then the AWD sense's that and then engages to the front axles to turn them.

I do have a ATV floor jack myself in my shop, but this place I'm going to sells new and used motorcyles,Atv's SXS,scooters.etc. It's not necessarily a dealership like Polaris,Honda,Suzuki, but they have a large assortment of pristine used stock. Kind of like they specialize in only buying very clean used stock. The ATV I'm looking at 2008 model has just little over 70 hr's and little over 700 miles on the odometer. They supplied 30 plus picture's of the ATV and a video with it running. They have pointed out every bit of damage on the ATV in the pictures and the video,which is very minimal damage that I can see.

I've really already negotiated a out the door deal over the phone on price if everything checks out alright. Like I said if everything looks good to me. Seller says no problem.

Before I go look at it I will ask the guy if I need to bring my ATV jack, I'd bet he say's we have one. Thank you again for the clarification on the AWD for the Polaris.

Hopefully this is the one because I'm tired of looking already lol. :smile

Tony
 

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Yeah, lot of folks think there's some sort of sensor that detects slip and engages AWD... Nothing could be further from the truth. Its a simple electromechanical Hilliard system. In in simplest terms, when the rear wheels outrun the front (slip or turn faster) no matter if in the air or in a mudhole, the front engages. As soon as the relative speeds of the F/R match again it disengages. That's why the call it "On Demand". AWD is only engaged when needed because the rears have slipped. Otherwise its still running in 2wd even though the switch is turned on. The switch only arms the system to work when needed. If everything is working correctly you'll hardly ever even notice it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Well this 2 hr trip to look at the 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500HO Touring paid off. I ended up purchasing it and the good thing is it came with a clean title that I'm to receive in the mail. The ATV had 77 hrs and 769 miles showing . Who ever had it took very good care of it from what I could see. I did carry my ATV jack along and jacked it up to test out the AWD and it all seemed to be working properly like it should. I'll probably be asking you guys questions on different things about the ATV over the next few weeks to be more familer with the bike. This is my first Polaris Sportsman. :smile

PearlWhite/Silver.


Tony
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Good looking machine! :top:
Thanks polman500, the next thing on the list is to order front and rear tube bumpers for it. They are a must have especially since last year when I had the Arctic Cat 650 that already had tube bumpers installed I'm sold on having bumpers.

My BIL not paying attention hit us me and the wife pretty dang hard in the rear end with his 05 Polaris Sportsman 700 while we was out trail riding. It embarrassed him pretty bad when he done that, but thank God that tube bumper was there to protect or it would have really messed up the rear plastic, muffler, and taillight on that Arctic Cat 650. My wife was giving her brother a hard time about that,that day. :grin

Tony
 

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Good looking machine! :top:
Thanks polman500, the next thing on the list is to order front and rear tube bumpers for it. They are a must have especially since last year when I had the Arctic Cat 650 that already had tube bumpers installed I'm sold on having bumpers.

My BIL not paying attention hit us me and the wife pretty dang hard in the rear end with his 05 Polaris Sportsman 700 while we was out trail riding. It embarrassed him pretty bad when he done that, but thank God that tube bumper was there to protect or it would have really messed up the rear plastic, muffler, and taillight on that Arctic Cat 650. My wife was giving her brother a hard time about that day. :grin

Tony
LOL, yep, I put brush guards on the old 800 years ago and thought I'd spent money unnecessarily but got hit pretty hard by a friend with an old Grizzly. It only made a mark on my new bumper about the size of a quarter but totally collapsed the front of the Griz.:grin
 
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