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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I had the ball joint separate on my 09 XP 550 this past weekend while riding. What a mess, still in shock. I called Polaris and they said that my VIN was not part of the recall, I only have about 420 Miles on the vehicle and can't understand how it could not have been part of the recall. They said to see my dealer about the problem, however, my dealer went out of business almost immediately after I bought the vehicle and I believe that this must be why I was not notified of the recall in the first place.

I wrote to the CEO, CFO and head of Customer Services at Polaris, and I plan to take the issue further if necessary. The design is flawed, steel ball joints going into an aluminum hub at a high wear point is an accident waiting to happen, that has happened...

In the mean time I plan to put my ATV back together myself to make sure that it is done right and know what to keep an eye out for in the future, I got lucky this time and was't going that fast when the tire folded under.

The replacement parts appear to be 'month specific' can anyone tell me how to tell what month my ATV was manufactured in?
VIN '4XAZN55A79A554044' Thanks!

Update: I have pulled the front end appart. The attached photos show the right side hub after removal and the upper A-arm bolt both are severely worn. It was the upper A-arm balljoint on the right side that failed while I was riding. The lower A-arm balljoint on the right side was 'sloppy' and severely worn, but it was not separating any time soon as the pieces were so worn that they had formed interlocking groves.
I have included photos of the left side of the front end as well, it has 'play in it' and there is visable wear on the bottom joint. I will not fix the left side until I have perfected the process on the right, and have the money to pay for another hub and joints($400 from partshark).
I am not sure if it is related to the poorly engineered ball joint issue or a direct result of the crash, but the lower A-arm bushings on the right side have some play in them so I will replace those while I have it apart.
*No word back from Polaris executives yet... I will give them a week to respond and then I will ping them again.
*Still nothing back from Polaris - other than an email from CONSUMER SERVICES stating that my VIN is not part of the recall - Polaris is in the stone age when it comes to customer service, they just don't get it yet.
*I have purchased a single share of Polaris Stock. It is at an all time high and most likely will drop like a rock after they buy GEMS from Chrysler. I plan to go to the shareholder meeting and express my displeasure with Polaris' 'CONSUMER SERVICES' and general attitude towards 'CUSTOMERS', not to mention the danger of not issuing a recall for all of the XP series vehicles with the same front end as mine.

** The proof is in - see the pictures later in this link - I received my OEM Polaris parts and the Balljoints that were on my XP were too short, the replacement balljoints are longer and pass all the way through the hub and this was part of the recall that supposedly my VIN was not included in. I am calling Polaris 'CONSUMER SUPPORT' back with the new information.


*** I completed the rebuild of my LH front end - took about 3 hours to take everything off including the a-arms, press out the old balljoints, press in the new ones and re-assemble. Waiting for parts to complete the RH side.

****Interesting note, the upper a-arm rollers and bushings had never seen a lick of grease. My bad for not trying to get in there and grease them, but it is something else that you should take at because evidently the factory or dealer is skipping the process on assembly. Note that it is impossible to get to those grease fittings without taking the shock off...

*****OK, I have completed the rebuild on both sides and took it out for a test drive last night... good to be back on the road, I am still going to file a small claims against Polaris on principle.
 

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My 09 also had to have one replaced after a few hundred miles, but not part of recall. BS!!
 

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Also check your A-arms. I had a lower one break off the tubes at the ball joint. Its worth a look when you grease.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
XP 550 Ball Joint Poorly Designed

I have an XP 550 from 2009. I don't know if the same a-arm, hub and ball-joint combination are used on any other Polaris ATVs from 2009 forward. I have purchased three other Polaris Sportsman ATV's prior to 2009, which were a 2004, 2005, and 2006 and they are all running just fine, other than some electrical problems that were fixed under recall that is.

I would highly recommend that if you are looking at a Polaris Sportsman ATV of any kind from 2009 forward, that you inspect the front end carefully and be prepared to pay someone about $1000 to get the thing fixed every 300 to 400 miles, if my machine is any indication of the normal wear rate of these parts....
 

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the recall consisted of different, grade 8 bolts so you could tighten the cinching part tighter, was donne on my 850 when new, didnt do anything to ball joints,
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Xp 550 recall

Thanks for that, the bolt that was on mine can be seen in one of my photos. It appears to be hardened, yet it too is warn significantly The cinch point was not completely closed when I first inspected whil on the trail and they were all open just about the same amount when i compared them. I thought that it might have just loosened at first, that is why I compared them. Are the gaps completely closed on your 850? Again, my dealer went out of business shortly after I purchased the 550, however, Polaris has told me that my vin was not subject to the recall after the accident anyway, therefor I still highly recommend that everyone inspect the front end regularly, top and bottom. I was lucky and I would hate for someone else to be less so...


***** THE PROOF IS IN ***
Check out the pictures - the failing front end uses the shorter ball joints that don't pass all the way through the hub, hence the wear on the hub itself... I was told that my VIN was not part of the recall, so inspect your front end carefully!
 

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I know there is a place to send this info, cant think of it, dept of consumer affairs, the goverment agency that force recalls for automotive
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Completed the rebuild, thanks to all who contributed tips on how to get the toe-in set and brakes bled properly, very useful! Watch those front end's closely on your 2009 XP's...
 

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2012 polaris 550 A arm

:nzd:
Also check your A-arms. I had a lower one break off the tubes at the ball joint. Its worth a look when you grease.
I have a 2012 550 just over 6 months old. My daughter was driving it she was only going 35 km/h and my front a arm broke and the bike endoed ripping the hole front end out of the bike, windshield, handel bars, winch controls, back rack and bar. We are after Polaris for a new bike. What year is yours? have u talked to polaris? Ours broke in the same spot about 3/16" up from the weld not a mark on the a arm showing that it was hit. We also had just changed the other side because it was bent one of had hit somthing not even knowing. We beliive that Polaris has skimped in the wrong spots. I haved owend lots of other 4 wheelers including polaris and have recked, crashed,endoed, ect and have never broken or bent an A arm before. We were very lucky that our Daughter wasnt killed.
 

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We are looking for other people that are having front a-arm problems. If there are others having these problems we would like to send it Polaris for a recall before someone dies! We had a 2012, 6 months old 550 sportsman that was wrote off $5000 parts and labor we felt wasn't our fault, but heard nothing from Polaris so we had to go through insurance.
 

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polaris dont give a shit

We are looking for other people that are having front a-arm problems. If there are others having these problems we would like to send it Polaris for a recall before someone dies! We had a 2012, 6 months old 550 sportsman that was wrote off $5000 parts and labor we felt wasn't our fault, but heard nothing from Polaris so we had to go through insurance.
i have a 2010 850 xp bought new after 200 miles an bike ball joints bad bolaris wont do a dame thing about it their phone number is 1 800 WE DONT GIVE A SHIT
 

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Not saying anything about the people that have had problems with their front suspension, but it is kinda weird how some have had problems and alot have not. I wonder what could be the main problem. Im not necessarily saying the riding conditions, but wonder if polaris uses different companies to manufacture their parts. Some may not have very high quality controll conditions compared to others. Saying this I wonder if Polaris uses several companies to supply them with the same parts. Not very likely but could be the issue??
 
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