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I have a 2011 RZR LE and was told buy a guy on the trail that he rides his machine 90% in 2WD and only uses AWD when in the worst situations so that he doesn't "wear out" his 4WD. Is the Polaris likely to break if left in AWD? So my question is how many people out there turn on the AWD button and leave it on all the time, and how many people run these things in 2WD for fear or wearing out their RZRs 4WD? What is the right thing to do?
 

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Well I have 800 miles on mine and its usually in AWD as I find in the high speed fire roads and washes it handles much better. Also in Glamis with no paddles I air down and run AWD full time. When I want to get out and hang the ass end out drift style I go back to 2WD or when I am just cruising trails. So I would say don't worry about it wearing out... thats what its there for.
 
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I only activate AWD if I think I may need it..my reasoning is there is parts in the front diff subject to wear while AWD is engaged..armature plates. Just a personal preference on my part. I know there are guys who leave their machines in AWD pretty much all the time. I just prefer not to wear parts if I don't have to...not really a fear...just how I am wired....no different to me that running the headlights when I don't need them.
 

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I only use AWD (4wd in my Rhino) when it is needed. I just got my RZR out for the first time yesterday. We were on some pretty rough and rocky trails. I used AWD for a total of about 2 minutes out of the 5 hrs we were out riding. The RZR (and the Rhino for that matter) do remarkably well in 2wd in a lot of situations.
 

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I just passed 30 hours on my 2011 LE, and have used AWD probably less than 5 minutes of that. I agree with HighOctane's thoughts on this one.
 

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I only activate AWD if I think I may need it..my reasoning is there is parts in the front diff subject to wear while AWD is engaged..armature plates. Just a personal preference on my part. I know there are guys who leave their machines in AWD pretty much all the time. I just prefer not to wear parts if I don't have to...not really a fear...just how I am wired....no different to me that running the headlights when I don't need them.

On the flip side, one could argue that when in awd there is less strain on the rear differential and rear axles/cv joints, since the front is helping spread out some of the work load. Don't know which is better just something else to consider.
 

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I drive in 2wd 99% of the time and only flip the AWD button when I get into a spot that might require it. I like being able to kick the rear end around when I get the urge. I was thinking about this yesterday while riding. Seems like there would be a market for a 2WD RZR.
 

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I only activate AWD if I think I may need it..my reasoning is there is parts in the front diff subject to wear while AWD is engaged..armature plates. Just a personal preference on my part. I know there are guys who leave their machines in AWD pretty much all the time. I just prefer not to wear parts if I don't have to...not really a fear...just how I am wired....no different to me that running the headlights when I don't need them.
X3. I also like to hang the rear out on faster trails. Maybe not the best for the trials, but it's fun to do :) I've gone through some nasty stuff and never needed AWD on this machine. If you have a winch you hardly need AWD on these things. Incredible traction with the meaty Bighorns. Winter is a different story...
 
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I only activate AWD if I think I may need it..my reasoning is there is parts in the front diff subject to wear while AWD is engaged..armature plates. Just a personal preference on my part. I know there are guys who leave their machines in AWD pretty much all the time. I just prefer not to wear parts if I don't have to...not really a fear...just how I am wired....no different to me that running the headlights when I don't need them.

On the flip side, one could argue that when in awd there is less strain on the rear differential and rear axles/cv joints, since the front is helping spread out some of the work load. Don't know which is better just something else to consider.
True..maybe kind of a stretch though. I'm not saying my way is the best or only way..just sharing what I do. Besides I would put any situation that would load the diff/axles that much that in the category of "needing" AWD..ie if I am climbing over obstacles,steep hils ect...I flip the AWD on. I also use it when running higher speeds in loose terrain(when I don't want to drift lol)...helps with the handling. There are alot of guys with Polaris' ATVs that run AWD all the time..more power to them. Just not what I do.
 

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I run with both and have had to only replace a bad switch after a while. The benefit of AWD is def at tight trails or fireroads. I feel a little more comfortable when at high speeds using it also.
 

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I use AWD all the time-600+ miles on Colorado trails. Have seen no problem. The dealer folks said the Polaris reps tell them just leave it in AWD for better control. Of course, they could be angling for more repair work.
 

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Keep in mind that even with the AWD switch turned on, it is only activated when it senses slippage in the rear wheels.
 

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Keep in mind that even with the AWD switch turned on, it is only activated when it senses slippage in the rear wheels.
Cool Avatar....

Yeah, I think it's like 1/4 revolution in the rear and the fronts start kicking in. Polaris has a kick ass AWD system for sure.
 

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Wife and I had two Sportsman's that we left I AWD all the time. Both of them locked up like the old style outboard Hillard's use too. But to be fair at times we road the highways getting to trails. Now we only put 'em in AWD when we come to some sections that look like we would need it. Have not had one "lock" up since. I also think there is less of a chance of breaking a plastic cage in the centralized Hillard's if you give them limited use.
 

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I go places most people get stuck in 4 wheel drive in 2...Ive never "needed" to engage my 4 wheel drive but usual use it when crossing rivers(danger) and playing in really smelly mud(I aint gettin out), other than that its only going to be used in the snow..But right now Im a mudder and its all play....That changes after this winter...Besides, whats to break?? the front Sprague...wow, thats an easy fix..just vacumm out all thats left of that plastic crap and install a real one!! problem solved!!
 

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The AWD will only kick in if your rear wheels slip anyways so it's not like it's activated all the time anyways. I personally don't recomend leaving it in AWD all the time since the machine is more likley to tip on a sharp corner. AWD doesn't do you any good if you arn't in the proper driving conditions to use it. In 2WD you can swing your ass around on the corners and stay reasonably stable but in AWD the front tires will grab as soon as the back kicks out causing the front to throw it onto it's side.

JMO
 
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