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Overdose on Propylene Glycol

880 Views 4 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  MNTNBKR
I love my ATV. I cherish my ATV. My ATV was running perfectly. I even named my ATV Brad. (Haha---just kidding, bad attempt at mirroring that stupid car ad on TV). Then I did an incredibly stupid thing...

After determining that I had a bit of water in the tank (because it started to act a bit sluggish the last couple weekends) on my 1997 Polaris Sportsman 400, I proceeded to run down to the hardware store and pick up a bottle of propylene glycol (HEET). Without researching or even taking a simple moment to read the instructions, I added the entire bottle to the 3 gallons that was in my tank. Started her up and it ran terrific once again, and the lost of HP was immediately remedied. I was happy, so happy I ran her for about 20 minutes wide open. Then decided to take her back home and as I slowly pulled into my metal shop, she died on her own. I haven't been able to crank her over since(using the starter or pull cord). I am perplexed as it has always been faithful and starts fine 100% of the time. Obviously this is not conscience.

Has anyone else in the history of dumb acts ever done something so horribly stupid? Any advice for this ill-advised situation I find myself in?

What I have tried: I pulled the plug and put a new plug in. The compression is still strong when I pull it so I don't think (holding my breath) that I damaged the rings. I can pull-and-pull to exhaustion but she refuses to start up, and when I try the electric-starter it just gives me one "click" like its the battery (but it definitely isn't the battery, new battery, fully charged).

So if anyone can offer any advice, I would appreciate it. I have Google searched words like "using too much propylene glycol", and every word closely associated with this issue, with absolutely no luck (which makes me think I'm the only dumb'arsh to have done this) Any recommendations??...Anyone??
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First, have you checked to see if it actually has spark? That model machine is notorious for CDI/limiter issues with age that cause a loss of spark.
Second, if you have spark and you really think its the gas just drain it and put in fresh. A little starting fluid will get things going with spark!
Hang on now, did you use HEET or propylene glycol? BIG DIFFERENCE. Depending on which one, HEET is either methanol or isopropanol, both alcohols. Propylene glycol on the other hand is NON-COMBUSTIBLE anti-freeze.

Hello Mark, I stand corrected. What I used was the red bottle of ISO-HEET 28202 Premium Fuel-line Antifreeze Water Remover and Injector Cleaner, a full bottle of it (sigh) which was 12 ounces in my tank which probably had 3.5-4 gallons in it. :(
when I try the electric-starter it just gives me one "click" like its the battery
I don't think the HEET did anything to cause the problem that you're having. It certainly wouldn't affect your starters ability to crank the engine. Based on your descriptions and the statement that I quoted above, it sounds like you have an electrical problem. Possibly a loose ground? Maybe a short to ground. Maybe a broken wire. I don't know much about the 97 400 in particular, but these symptoms point toward an electrical problem regardless of the vehicle type. My guess is once you figure out why your starter wont crank, you'll also have figured out what's keeping the engine from firing when you try to pull start it.
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