The Most Common Polaris Ranger 500 Problems (Solutions)

Polaris Ranger 500 may experience several problems like a damaged transmission belt and engine not starting or dying after a few moments of starting. Besides, troubles and grinding noise while shifting, backfiring, and smoke coming from Exhaust are widespread issues in this car model.

This vehicle is praiseworthy due to its features, durability, reliability, and efficiency. Yet, you may face a few electronic and mechanical issues while using this car. Thus, you must have a clear idea about Polaris Ranger 500 Problems.

In this article, we will discuss a few common issues and their solutions for this car model. We will also cover the reasons and prevention of these problems. Thus, if you have this vehicle or are planning to buy one, this article will be helpful for you.

Table: Problems on Polaris Ranger 500 And Their Solutions

Blown Transmission Belt Don’t use the transmission aggressively. Also, let your engine heat up before driving in cold seasons.
Trouble In StartingCheck the battery and fix the battery issue. 
Grinding SoundsRepair the transmission and clutch dogs
Smoke From ExhaustYou need to clean the air filter. Also, inspect for faulty fuel injectors and repair them.
Sifting ProblemRepair or replace the damaged transmission belt.
BackfiringClean the spark plug and repair or replace it if necessary.

Reasons For Different Polaris Ranger 500 Problems

Polaris Ranger 500 Repairing

Though you already know how to resolve those common problems with your vehicle, you should know the causes behind these Problems. Only then will you understand those troubles better and can solve them efficiently. Those causes are

1. Blown Transmission Belt

The transmission belt functions to exchange power between different moving parts. This will make the steering tough. Also, the alternator won’t charge the battery anymore. It is one of the most common for the 2013 Polaris ranger 500.


  • Friction between clutches and belts can cause wear
  • Driving the vehicle at below 3-7 miles per hour speed
  • Not warming up before starting in the cold season


  •  When your car is stuck, try to use the transmission slowly with the fast application of the throttle
  • During the cold season, run your engine for 2-3 minutes before driving the car. Keep the transmission in a neutral position

2. Trouble In Starting

Sometimes, you won’t be able to start the engine with the entering key in the ignition switch. Even if it starts, it dies within a few minutes.


  • This mainly occurs when there is insufficient power in the ignition. Specifically, here voltage of the battery is the source of energy
  • If solenoid connections are unprotected
  • Sometimes loose battery and solenoid connections also cause trouble when starting

The below diagram will help you to understand the reasons properly.



  • Make sure the battery is charged enough
  • Tighten the loose battery and solenoid connections

3. Grinding Sounds

Sometimes, powerful grinding sounds come when you try to shift your car at “H.” For shifting, you have to shut off the car first, then shift, and after that, start again.


  • Changing gear slowly
  • Worn-out or dangerous clutch dogs slide over each other, which causes the rattling noise
  • Broken shifter and gear


  • You should remove the old clutch dogs and install new ones
  • Rebuilding of transmission 
  • To prevent gear slipping, you should use a shift and gear selector cable for your Polaris ranger 500

4. Smoke From Exhaust

Sometimes, you may notice smoke coming from the engine exhaust. If you don’t resolve the problem quickly, it may cause severe damage to the engine. To understand this problem better, you can watch the following.


  • High fuel-air ratio
  • Damaged or clogged air filter
  • Leaks in fuel injector
  • Malfunctioning fuel pressure regulator.


  • Clean the air filter
  • Replace the damaged or faulty air filter with a new one
  • Use the recommended oil for your vehicle
  • Repair or change the damaged, faulty fuel injector and air pressure regulator

5. Sifting Problem

It’s one of those common for the 2012 Polaris Ranger 500. When you try to shift your car into “H,” it doesn’t go to the level. Instead, it remains in the “L” position.


  • Probably the spring and rollers in the secondary could be damaged
  • Wear out primary of the CVT system may also block the movements of moving parts. This will cause trouble in shifting
  • Damaged belt


  • Replace the broken belt with a new one
  • Repair the wear out tranny
  • Wash the primary and secondary properly

6. Backfiring

Backfiring causes the loss of engine power. You may hear a loud noise coming from the engine, and forward movement becomes bumpy. 


  • Not using recommended fuel for your vehicle
  • Adulteration of fuel with water
  • Damaged spark plug
  • Loose connections with the ignition switch


  • Use the recommended fuel for your vehicle
  • Inspect if the spark plug is damaged or dirty
  • Clean the spark plug and repair or replace the damaged spark plug
  • Make sure there aren’t any loose connections

Preventive Methods To Avoid Those Issues

RANGER 500 Air Filter Replacement

Regular maintenance is the first method to keep your car long-lasting. You can avoid a few crucial issues with your vehicle if you follow some preventive procedures. Those methods are:


Friction may cause wear out of a few significant parts of your vehicle. Thus, you must prevent wear out due to friction by greasing those parts.

Oil Changing

You need to change the transmission oil frequently. Because with time, the transmission oil loses its quality and becomes darker in color. Then it may cause trouble in transmission.

Don’t Run Hard

You need to maintain an optimum speed in your car. Also, you shouldn’t use the clutch at every intersection. It is essential to prevent wear in tires, damage to the clutch, and damage to the engine.

Clean Air Filter

Engine performance becomes weak if the air filter becomes clogged. It may cause issues in transmission, increased fuel consumption, and dirty emission. Therefore, you must clean the air filter frequently.

Clean Starter

If the starter is clogged and doesn’t function properly, it may cause damage to its connecting gear. That’s why it’s necessary for you to inspect and clean the starter often.

Replace The Ethanol Fuel

Change the ethanol fuel with non-ethanol fuel. Ethanol fuel may become the reason for engines not starting in cold weather.

Read More-

  1. 4 Wheeler Will Start But Won’t Stay Running: 5 Issues to Solve
  2. Polaris Ranger 6&6 Common Problems [Reasons +Solutions]


In this section, we will answer a few of the most-asked questions about the Polaris Ranger 500.

Is the Polaris Ranger 500 reliable?

Yes. Though it has several issues, you can solve them quite quickly in most cases. This vehicle can adapt to the off-road trail without even any trailer. Most importantly, you will get higher utility over any brute force.

What is the reason for the spring transmission in the Polaris ranger 500?

The reasons behind this issue are mainly bent rods, damaged linkage, and worn-out bushing. The bent rod disturbs the proper alignment of the gear and causes excessive wear.

What to do if the main harness wiring of my Polaris Ranger 500 has chafed?

You have to rebuild or rectify it as soon as possible. Otherwise, it will start corroding and rusting and damage the ignition switch and solenoid. Then, it will cost you almost $1500 to repair.


Indeed, the Polaris ranger 500 is a great vehicle with excellent features and facilities. But, like any other vehicle, it’s very common to encounter different Polaris Ranger 500 Problems. 

You can resolve those issues yourself, and you also can take professional help if you are not skilled enough. We encourage you to maintain your vehicle regularly so that the problems don’t happen. You know what? Prevention is always better than cure. 


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