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Old 06-28-2013, 09:21 AM   #1
btcn OP
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Polaris ATV blowing white smoke

Hello, so I'm working on a Polaris Sportsman 300 4X4, it runs ok and starts real easy but it blows white smoke like crazy, I mean it'll fog up the whole damn neighborhood. Its also an air cooled engine, so that means its burning oil I believe.

So I ran a compression test, it was about 155-160 PSI cold, and warm I believe it'd be maybe a few PSI more? I believe that is pretty good compression for it right? I thought it'd be more like 120 or less and be rings or something.

So what do you believe could cause this? Diesel in the fuel? Pre mix? That is a slight possibility as it is not mine [yet!], but its very unlikely. I will flush out the tank anyways just to be sure. So what would cause white smoke with good compression and air cooled, IF it has clean gas?

Also, just for reference, I'll tell you what I was told when this happened. So this is a ranch quad, it was used to pull manure trailers up a steep dirt road everyday [30 horses shit!], and twice a day pulling a trailer with a heavy load of hay for the horses all over the place. And the guy just floored the shit out of it going up the hill every day, and being aircooled and only 300 cc, and especially on wet days, its possibly pulling between 600 and 1,400 lbs+ rider weight, up a very steep grade to the manure pile. NOt good I'd Imagine. Now they use a Honda 450, I still think a 600 or so would be more suitable. But one day, the lady was driving it and it just started smoking like that, I believe, it wasn't a gradual thing. Its only a couple years old too I believe. It's been sitting about 1 year now.

Oh, also, when I pulled the plug to do a compression test, it was very wet and oily so it is got to be some oil? And when I shut her down, the muffler smokes a tiny bit of white smoke for a couple minutes when its warm, almost like the muffler is burning it's own small bit of oil.

Any ideas? I appreciate any help or ideas.
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Old 06-28-2013, 09:46 AM   #2
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It's a 2-stroke. Oil pump cable may be stuck, inspect it. What oil is in there?
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Old 06-28-2013, 09:53 AM   #3
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It's a 2-stroke. Oil pump cable may be stuck, inspect it. What oil is in there?

I'm pretty sure it's a 4 stroke motor.
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:28 AM   #4
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I'm pretty sure it's a 4 stroke motor.
What year? Did the guy at least use LOW RANGE for pulling? My bad, I thought 335 was as weenie as the 4 stroke Sporties went. How many hours/miles?
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:35 AM   #5
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Valve seals are bad, not a big deal to replace them even without pulling the head. Pull the valve cover, use the rope/ compressed air trick in the spark plug hole to keep from dropping the valve, compress the retainers (most annoying part) with a pry bar or make a tool, remove keepers, springs, and seals, pop new ones on and good to go.
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:36 AM   #6
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Broken oil control ring would do that.
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:50 AM   #7
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I second the broke oil ring idea, valve seals tend to go slow and smaoke when cold and slack off as they warm up. A oil ring will just smoke like mad all the time and it doesn't cause a compression drop when it goes.
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Old 06-28-2013, 06:03 PM   #8
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Ok it sounds a lot like an oil control ring then. Its probly not valves then because Engine temp has nothing to do with the smoke, from the second you start it up to full temp it smokes like hell, and it has compression.

So how hard would it be to do a ring job? I know how to get into the motor, I have worked around engines a lot but never really gotten that deep into them. With the shop manual I'm sure I could figure it out.

And thanks concours and Switchblade315.

I'll probably check the very basic things like flush the fuel out and check the air filter just to make sure, and if not then start the rebuild.
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Old 06-29-2013, 04:43 AM   #9
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Ok it sounds a lot like an oil control ring then. Its probly not valves then because Engine temp has nothing to do with the smoke, from the second you start it up to full temp it smokes like hell, and it has compression.

So how hard would it be to do a ring job? I know how to get into the motor, I have worked around engines a lot but never really gotten that deep into them. With the shop manual I'm sure I could figure it out.

And thanks concours and Switchblade315.

I'll probably check the very basic things like flush the fuel out and check the air filter just to make sure, and if not then start the rebuild.
Get the FACTORY shop manual from the dealer, the Clymer/Haynes stuff is shit. Properly CLEANING before disassembly will be a challenge, take the plastic/tank off before washing thoroughly. Good luck! Keep us posted
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Old 06-29-2013, 04:50 AM   #10
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If it is smoking that much you may be getting a false compression reading caused by too much carbon in the cylinder head, but you'll find out one way or another when everything comes apart.
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Old 06-29-2013, 06:10 PM   #11
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Get the FACTORY shop manual from the dealer, the Clymer/Haynes stuff is shit. Properly CLEANING before disassembly will be a challenge, take the plastic/tank off before washing thoroughly. Good luck! Keep us posted

Yea I believe the owners have the factor manual, I'll find out for sure that'd be pretty helpful.

And you mean cleaning the engine off before disassembly?

I'll be sure to keep y'all up to date.
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Old 06-29-2013, 06:11 PM   #12
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If it is smoking that much you may be getting a false compression reading caused by too much carbon in the cylinder head, but you'll find out one way or another when everything comes apart.


Yea that could be true too. Yea I'm sure I'll find out when I pull it apart and I'll take pics too.
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Old 06-29-2013, 06:15 PM   #13
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Yea I believe the owners have the factor manual, I'll find out for sure that'd be pretty helpful.

And you mean cleaning the engine off before disassembly?

I'll be sure to keep y'all up to date.
Yes, the mud/dirt caked all over the frame/wiring etc. that is above the engine must be cleaned well.
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Old 06-29-2013, 06:21 PM   #14
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also even once you do the rebuild if you don't clean the head pipe and muffler out it will still smoke until all the old oil burns out so don't let that scare you. my experience with those quads is the worst part is getting the motor off, you might get lucky and be able to slide the top end off with it still in the frame. and get a good factory manual, even if you find one on the net somewhere in a pdf.
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Old 06-30-2013, 12:51 AM   #15
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concours I see what your saying now.

Switchblade315 yea that makes sense I can see the muffler is pretty oily. Yea it looks like it'll be a PITA to get it out, but I'll try and get the manual soon.
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