Polaris Sportsman Brake Bleed Q&A

Bleeding the brakes on a Polaris Sportsman ATV can be a little confusing as to which order to bleed them in, front or back.

John Talley does weekly live Q&A sessions every Friday at 3PM Eastern on our YouTube channel. In this session, John helped a couple of our viewers solve their brake bleeding issues, including one viewer confused about which order to bleed the front and rear brakes. Here are John’s answers on bleeding brakes as it relates to the Polaris Sportsman. 

Polaris Sportsman ATV brake bleed

Brake Bleeding - Polaris Sportsman ATV

I’m having a problem. When I fill up the reserve and pump the brake lever, nothing will come out of the bleeder valve. When I open it up, could it possibly be a clogged hose?

John Talley: Yes, it could be. But I’ve run into this on a couple of different machines and I don’t recall the make or model, but it would not want to drop down and start bleeding unless I reinstalled the cap and the diaphragm up top. That kind of defies logic but that was the case, and I can’t recall which machine I had that issue with. It may have been that Polaris Sportsman 850 that I was doing some work on. It seems like it had to have that cover reinstalled on that brake master before it would actually start pressurizing and pushing the brake fluid down. So you may want to check that on your unit and see if that’s the case.

Buy Polaris Dot 4 brake fluid

Bike Master brake fluid extractor

I have a 2008 Polaris Sportsman 500. It has two brake lines on the back caliper. When I do the front, do I then do the back ones that lead to the front one first or the one that has its own filler cap?

John Talley: Ok, on the Polaris, your front brake line is actually connected to your rear brake line as well. When you go to hit your front brake handle, that just goes directly to the caliper. Now when you push your brake pedal, that activates both your rear brake and just a little bit of the front brake, so you’re actually going to need to bleed it twice. And I usually bleed the furthest part first. So if you’ve already done the brake handle first, then I’d drop down to that reservoir you’re talking about, which is for the “quote-quote” rear brake master and you want to go ahead and bleed it to the front calipers first, and the finish off with the rear. It seems like we did that on our Polaris Sportsman 850

Want to see more live repair questions answered? See more motorcycle and ATV repair questions answered here.



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