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3 Polaris RZR Pedal Problems and Fixes

3 Polaris RZR Pedal Problems and Fixes

The Polaris RZR is considered one of the most versatile side-by-sides on the market today. It’s beautifully designed and can be used for anything from a weekend at the lake to a weeklong expedition through the backcountry. But like any other machine, it’s not flawless, and you may face some problems from time to time. 

Broken throttle cables are a common cause of pedal problems in the Polaris RZR. If the cable is intact, you’ll likely need to adjust it. If not, it should be replaced. Pedal problems can also be caused by issues with the electronic throttle control or the throttle position sensor.

The Polaris RZR is an incredible machine. But even the best machines will break down once in a while. This article will help decipher some common problems you could face with the RZR pedals and how you can fix them.

1. Broken Throttle Cable

Polaris has done an excellent job at improving its RZR line of vehicles, but there are still issues that arise from time to time. One problem that’s commonly run into with the RZR is a broken throttle cable (source).

First, let’s get a basic rundown of what this part does. When you press down on the gas pedal on your RZR, the throttle cable pulls a lever that allows more fuel into the carburetor so your engine can run faster. Similarly, when you press down on the brake pedal, this cable pulls a lever that closes off fuel flow from the carburetor so that your engine has less fuel and slows down.

These simple actions make up the basics of how your RZR works – when you want to go faster, you press down harder on the gas pedal; when you want to slow down, you gently ease up on the gas. As the controller for the gas and brake on your RZR, the throttle cable is an essential yet sensitive part of your Polaris, and it can sometimes break and malfunction. 

Whatever the problem is with your throttle cable, it’s likely to cause some vexing issues with your side-by-side that can be avoided if you know how to fix it.

How To Fix

Firstly, investigate the throttle cable itself – inspect the length of the wire and ensure it looks intact. It’ll need replacing if there is any visible damage or fraying on the wire (source). 

Here is an informative YouTube video from 3Day Weekend to assist you in replacing a broken throttle cable:

RZR 800S - How to replace the Throttle Cable

If the throttle cable is not frayed, all you may have to do is adjust the cable itself. You can do this using the following steps:

  1. Remove both seats.
  2. At the throttle body, look for the throttle cable adjuster.
  3. Remove the cable adjuster housing by sliding it off.
  4. Loosen the adjustment nut with a 10 mm open-end wrench.
  5. Shift the cable adjuster with an 8 mm open-end wrench until the throttle pedal has 1.5–3 mm free play.
  6. Gently move the throttle pedal upward and downward while adjusting.
  7. Tighten the jam nut.
  8. Move the housing back over the cable adjuster to its initial position after applying a small amount of grease to the interior (source).

2. Electronic Throttle Control Issues

Polaris RZR owners are no strangers to Electronic Throttle Control (ETC), which is the system that regulates how much power you’re putting on the wheels. It’s an excellent feature for people who want to conserve fuel or those who don’t want to constantly adjust their speed and only drive at one set speed. 

If the throttle mechanism develops a mechanical issue, the ETC system should shut off the engine of your Polaris. The ETC switch is mounted separately from the throttle actuator lever within the throttle block assembly. 

Regardless of where the throttle lever is positioned, the contacts are open during normal conditions. The switch contacts close and connect the black wire to the ground in case of a mechanical issue with the throttle mechanism (i.e., loss of cable tension), preventing an ignition spark (source).

Ultimately, this function is the same as turning the key or engine stop switch off.

The throttle is a significant part of the Polaris RZR, and issues with the ETC can devastate your vehicle’s ability to move. Fortunately, it’s not hard to test the ETC system yourself to see if your UTV is experiencing throttle problems due to mechanical issues.

How To Fix

You can perform control switch testing on your RZR to test for pedal problems by doing the following:

  1. Release each tab along the edge of the throttle block cover with caution.
  2. Apply the parking brake as well as put the transmission into neutral.
  3. Turn on the engine, then gradually open the throttle lever until the engine RPM just exceeds idle.
  4. Start releasing the throttle lever, keeping your fingers on the throttle cable.
  5. The engine will lose spark and shut off if there is a mechanical issue regarding your pedals (source).

3. Throttle Position Sensor Problems

One common complaint amongst RZR owners is a malfunctioning Throttle Position Sensor (TPS) (source). The throttle position sensors fit on your RZR as an external sensor on the side of the throttle body and can fall out of adjustment (source). This can result in the throttle randomly going to a minimum or maximum position, leading many owners to wonder how to fix something that, on the surface, appears to be a Polaris RZR pedal problem.

Throttle position sensors are vital to your Polaris RZR’s engine management system. They allow your engine to maintain a proper amount of air and can be crucial in preventing damage to your engine. 

A faulty TPS can be caused by several things – such as bad ground, a disconnected wire, or even dirty terminals. As such, it’s important to recognize multiple symptoms of the issue so that you’ll know what to look for.

There are many indications that your TPS has failed (source). In particular, you will have an annoying check engine light on your dash, a loss of power and performance, and the throttle body won’t function correctly. The most common symptom of a bad TPS is hesitation while accelerating from a stop or driving around corners.

How To Fix

Generally, the TPS will need to be adjusted. Here is an excellent YouTube video from TPS Tool explaining exactly how you can do this: 

Set the TPS on a Polaris Ranger RZR 800 2009-2010

I also recommend my guide to Polaris RZR throttle position sensor issues.


Hopefully, these tips will help you resolve common problems you might encounter when using your Polaris RZR pedal.

These problems can often be fixed with the proper knowledge at hand. But if you cannot get your vehicle up and running again, don’t delay – contact your local dealer as soon as possible.

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