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Infamous Sportsman 500 HO Ticking now Gone!

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Hey Guys

I just wanted to let all you Polaris Sportsman 500 HO owners know what I came across today while working on my bike.

I decided to pull the bike out today to start getting it ready for my trip up north next week. When I started it up I noticed the infamous Polaris Sportsman ticking that comes from the front right of the engine. From what I read on all the different forums is that the ticking is from the water/oil pump. I also read that this sound is normal on most SP500 HO's and so I thought I would have to live with the sound. But what I did notice when I started the bike was the noise was a bit louder than I last remembered it to be.

So I decided to changed the oil and I followed the procedure in the manual right to the letter! I used a K&N oil filter and 2 liters of Amsoil 0W40 4 stroke synthetic. When I was done changing the the oil I pinched off the vent line to the top of the oil tank to prime the oil pump and started the bike. I held the vent pinched for around 15 seconds and released it untill I heard the air release sound. Now the pump is primed and the oil is flowing like it supposed to be but the infamous ticking is still there but a little quieter. This difference in sound had got me thinking about what could be causing the noise and what I came up with is a air pocket that is trapped in the oil pump.

You may think that sounds a little far fetched for air to be trapped in the oil pump, but what I did next seems to have solved my ticking noise. I started the bike and I pinched the oil return line that comes from the pump and goes to the tank. I only pinched it off with a pair of needle nose pliers for a few seconds at a time. Each time I pinched the hose the tone of the engine would change and sound as if it was loading up. I also noticed the hose expanding slightly from the oil pressure, when this happened I would release the hose and you could hear the oil rushing back into the tank. After doing this about 5 times my ticking was 95% quiter if not completly gone.

Now I don't know if this will work on everyones bike but it seemed to work on my bike and I now love the sound of my bike, it sounds like new again!

P.S. If anything changes on my trip next week I will post back my findings.

I hope this helps!


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  • 1 month later...

Sounds like a rocker adjustment might get the rest out.. Something else to check is the one way valve maybe worn. Follow the oil lines down to the bottom end and you will see a 12mm bolt next to the oil lines going into the bottom end pull it out and remove the spring and plunger see if the rubber end is worn its a 15 dollar part that will cause you allot of problems when it fails.Its what holds the oil on the top end when the motor is not running when it fails it allows the oil to drain from the top end causing dry start which will ware a cam out quick.

Good luck Polarisatvrepair.com

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