Arctic Cat Bearcat Won’t Start (Troubleshooting Guide)

To fix an Arctic Cat Bearcat (carburetor models) snowmobile that will not turn on and begin to work you must first identify its symptom. A symptom is a physical feature that can indicate a particular condition. Common no-start symptoms include; engine cranks but will not start, engine will not crank or start, engine will turn over but won’t start or is hard to start.

In most cases, if your sled won’t start up and begin running, then most likely the vehicle’s battery is discharged or the cable connections are loose or corroded. But sometimes the problem is not always easy to identify, and you will have to troubleshoot to find the cause and its remedy.

Troubleshooting is a problem solving strategy used to trace and correct faults in a snowmobile fuel, electronic or mechanical system.  It is a logical, systemic search for its possible cause and correction. If you’ve already checked the basics, and still haven’t got your sled back up and running again, use this troubleshooting guide. It should help you find the problem source.

Engine won’t start or is hard to start

Low compression

Condition Remedy
1. Valve clearance not adjusted properly
2. Worn valve guides – poorly seated
3. Worn piston rings
4. Worn cylinder bore
5. Spark plug seated incorrectly
1. Adjust valve clearance
2. Replace valve guides
3. Replace piston rings
4. Rebore cylinder
5. Tighten spark plug

No spark

Condition Remedy
1. Fouled spark plug
2. Spark plug wet
3. Faulty magneto
4. Faulty ignition coil assembly
5. Spark plug cap shorted
1. Replace plug
2. Clean and dry plug
3. Replace magneto
4. Replace ignition coil assembly
5. Replace spark plug cap

No fuel reaching carburetor

Condition Remedy
1. Gas tank vent blocked
2. Gas tank shut-off valve blocked
3. Faulty carburetor inlet needle
4. pinched, obstructed fuel hose
5. Fuel filter clogged
1. Clear vent completely on
2. Turn on valve completely
3. Replace inlet needle
4. Clear hose
5. Clean or replace fuel filter

Arctic Cat Bearcat Will Not Start Up and Run

No spark at spark plugs

Condition Remedy
1. Faulty ignition switch
2. Ignition switch not in RUN position
3. Wire harness shorting
4. Emergency stop switch knob switch off
5. Faulty emergency stop switch
6. Throttle/ignition monitor switch too loose
7. Faulty throttle/ignition monitor switch
8. Throttle/ignition monitor switch too tight
9. Carb safety switches misadjusted/faulty
10. Damaged spark plugs
11. Damaged/shorted spark plug caps
12. High tension wires/coils loose
13. Faulty high tension wires/coil
14. Defective CDI unit (1)
15. Defective Charge coil (2)
16. Flywheel magnets weak
17. Sheared flywheel key
1. Replace ignition switch
2. Turn switch to RUN position
3. Repair or replace wire harness
4. Move knob in UP position
5. Replace emergency stop switch
6. Tighten throttle cable
7. Replace throttle switch
8. Loosen throttle cable
9. Adjust or replace carb switches
10. Replace plugs
11. Substitute with new caps
12. Service high tension wires/coil
13. Replace high tension wires/coil
14. Replace CDI unit
15. Replace coil
16. Replace flywheel
17. Replace key

No fuel at cylinders

Condition Remedy
1. Fuel tank empty
2. Shut-off valve closed
3. Pinched or broken fuel hose
4. Gas tank vent hose blockage
5. In-line fuel filter clogged
6. Faulty fuel pump
7. Impulse hose damaged/disconnected
8. Carburetor adjusted wrong, dirty
9. Primary compression (crankcase) absent
1. Fill tank with gasoline
2. Open shut-off valve
3. Replace or repair hose
4. Remove obstruction or replace
5. Clear or replace in-line fuel filter
6. Replace fuel pump
7. Reconnect or replace impulse hose
8. Adjust, rebuild or replace carbs
9. Replace/repair worn engine components

Fuel does not ignite

Condition Remedy
1. Carburetor-to-cylinder air leak
1
1
2. Carbs misadjusted, dirty or damaged
3. Contaminated fuel
4. Engine flooded
1
1
5. Secondary compression (cylinder) low
6. Choke cable(s) misadjusted
1. Replace or service gaskets, intake flanges, service intake ports, connect oil delivery hose
2. Clean, rebuild or replace carburetor
3. Replace gas, clean fuel system
4. Service carbs, clear motor by pulling recoil several times, replace air-intake silencer, install new spark plugs, try restarting
5. Replace/repair worn engine components
6. Check and adjust if necessary

As previously mentioned, make certain you first check the basic things needed to get your Arctic Cat Bearcat back up and running again. Use a hydrometer to check the percentage charge of the battery (hydrometer will not work on AGM type batteries) or a voltmeter to check the state of charge.

Check for loose or corroded battery connections, frayed or damaged wires or a disconnected harness. If all else fails, use the troubleshooting chart above. Check compression, check for spark, look to see if fuel is reaching the carburetor, check to see if you are getting spark at the spark plugs or fuel at the cylinders. If you’re getting fuel to the cylinders, determine if it is igniting.

If you’ve found a problem area, like no spark. Then inspect, clean, replace or test each component listed until you find the source of the problem.

Troubleshooting applies to the following models

1999-2000 Bearcat 340 1999-2000 Bearcat 440 I 1999-2000 Bearcat II
1999-00 Bearcat Wide Track 2001 Bearcat Widetrack 2002 Bearcat Widetrack
2003 Bearcat Widetrack 2004 Bearcat 570 2005 Arctic Cat Bearcat 570
2006 Bearcat 570 2007 Bearcat 570 2008 Bearcat 570
2009 Arctic Cat Bearcat 570 2010 Arctic Cat Bearcat 570 2010 Bearcat 570 XT
2011-2012 Bearcat 570 2011-2012 Bearcat 570 XT 2013 Bearcat 570/XT
2015 Arctic Cat 2000 XT 2016 Arctic Cat 2000 XT 2017 Bearcat 2000 XT ES

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.