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  1. #1

    Smile New Forum Member, 1st Post; New PWC Owner; 2001 Virage; My Story (LONG); Huge Thanks

    A couple weeks ago a co-worker pulled his 2001 Virage to work.......he had decided to buy a new PWC and wanted $500 for the Virage with the caveat that it wasn't running. Said it had been running earlier this season, but became progressively harder to start and finally would not start at all. Looked to be in VERY NICE shape with 175 hours on the clock. I rode stand-ups 25+ years ago and loved it then.......have 2 teen-age boys now, so I said what the heck and pulled it home.

    Co-worker gave me the name of a local mechanic who came highly recommended from the local Polaris dealership. I set up an appointment with the mechanic and pull the Virage over to his house to evaluate and find out what it would need to get it running. At this point I had found this forum and had done a little bit of research. When I called the mechanic to get the assessment, he told me the plugs weren't getting fire.....but he had proofed the coil and it was the problem had to be with the stator or the CDI. He just couldn't tell me which because he didn't have the proper manuals and testing equipment for my particular machine??????? I was a little disappointed because he said it could be either, but didn't know which.........and both are fairley expensive parts. He also performed a compression check and both cylinders were 145psi each which was good. So, for his fee, I found out the plugs werent' getting fire.......which according to him could be the stator or CDI and the engine had good compression for the age/hours of the ski.

    Well, I wanted to do some more reading here before I threw a couple expensive parts at the problem. I took interest in the post(s) explaining Polaris' sensitivity to low battery voltage while cranking and holding the bilge pump button while cranking to possibly bypass this issue. I try doing this.......eureka! My Virage starts......albeit with difficulty after cranking for about 10-15 seconds and was very smokey. I do this a few more times in the following couple days........and the Virage starts up each time. So much for the diagnosis of bad stator/CDI from the mechanic.

    After consistently being able to get it started, I decide it's time to put it in the water and see how it runs. My son and I go to the lake and I get it started on the trailer on the ramp.......still hard starting, but it started and seemed to run well, so I launch it and tie it off and shut it down on the dock to park my truck. Re-start was no problem, and my son and I proceed to spend a fun-filled couple hours on the lake running this Virage. Son rolls us off at one point......we climb back on and I bump the start button and it fires right up. The Virage ran way better than stumbling and pulled us both very strong to an indicated 50+ mph at WOT. I'm stoked.....definitely nothing wrong with this ski's electical/ignition.

    At home over the next few days, I start it up a few times.......and its still hard to (cold) start; but it does start. On saturday, I decide to pull the plugs to inspect and check gap. When I pull the plugs.......they are not the part # the manual calls for and BOTH ARE ALMOST DRIPPING WET???? I know wet plugs aren't right and decide this is probably the cause for the hard cold starts. I come to this forum again and do some more reading......I come across a couple threads which talk about fuel tank pressure build-up pushing fuel thru the lines into the carbs and flooding the engine. WOW! It just so happens EVERYTIME I've opened the cap on the fuel tank.....I had gotten a rush of air coming much so as I'm turning the cap out on it's last thread; the air coming out "pops" the cap into my hand! To this point, the fuel switch had was always in the "on" position.

    I then turn the fuel switch to the 'off' position......take the ski to the lake on sunday (yesterday) to give the wife a ride and the Virage starts right up on the ramp just like it should......a couple seconds of cranking with partial choke and it fires right up! NO HARD START. Wife and I then continue to ride up and down the lake for the next 3 hours without issue and have a blast!

    So that's where I'm a great deal on a nice Virage and with the help of this forum I was able to rectify a non-start to running due to weak battery; a hard start to normal start due to a flooding condition caused by excess pressure build-up in the fuel tank. This Virage has the original fuel lines so I'll be replacing those in the coming days along with the vent check valves to rectify the pressure build-up problem.


  2. #2
    Tony's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    North Carolina
    Welcome to GH. Sounds like you are in for a summer full of fun! Members make this place great...and now you're a member too.

  3. #3
    I'm feeling naturally aspirated today pirate33's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Lomita, aka Slowmita
    Welcome to your new 2nd home

  4. #4
    Moderator beerdart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006

  5. #5
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    near Toronto, Canada

    Replace that battery with a factory sealed AGM type battery. Odyssey PC625 or Deka ETX16LM are my suggestions.

    Will the engine (with a strong battery) now start without pressing the bilge button?

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by K447 View Post

    Replace that battery with a factory sealed AGM type battery. Odyssey PC625 or Deka ETX16LM are my suggestions.

    Will the engine (with a strong battery) now start without pressing the bilge button?
    Hey K447,

    Yes, the engine now starts without holding the bilge button. New sealed battery also on the way. Thanks again.......your posts on the above-mentioned problems were a tremendous help to me.

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