Sportster Models

Touring Models

Dyna Models

2006 Harley-Davidson XL 883 Sportster 883, 2006 Harley-Davidson XL 883L Sportster 883 Low, 2006 Harley, Davidson XL 883C Sportster 883C Custom , 2006 Harley-Davidson XL 883R Sportster 883R, 2006 Harley-Davidson XL 1200C Sportster 1200 Custom, 2006 Harley-Davidson XL 1200R Sportster 1200 Roadster, 2006 Harley-Davidson XL 1200L Sportster 1200 Low.

This service manual covers all the following Sportster Models: XL883, XL1200, XL883L, XL883C, XL883R, XL1200, XL1200L, XL1200C, XL1200R Including Domestic and International Models.

Tired of asking your local certified repair technician mechanic questions about your ailing problems with no answers like
1. My engine does not start.
2. Why is my engine hard to start.
3. My engine starts but lacks power upon throttle.
4. Why am I having poor performance at low and idle speed?
5. Whats causing my week performance at high (top speed)?
6. Why when I start my engine it shuts off?
7. Which, what Oil do i use?
8. How do I check to see if my compression is low?
9. How do I know if my clutch is slipping?
10. I hear a strange knocking noise upon acceleration, whats causing this?
11. How do i set the Ignition Timing?

Get all the answers you need and more with this systematic troubleshooting approach to guide you through diagnosing and fixing your Harley.



The troubleshooting section of this manual is intended

solely as a guide to diagnosing problems. Carefully read

the appropriate sections of this manual before performing

any work. Observe all cautions and warnings.

The following check list can be helpful in locating most operating

troubles. Refer to the appropriate sections in this Service

Manual for detailed procedures.

Check for Remedy

Restricted fuel tank vent system. Correct restricted hose. Replace vapor valve.

Loose float bowl screws. Tighten screws.

Damaged float bowl O-ring. Replace O-ring.

Damaged or leaking float assembly. Replace float assembly.

Particle contamination in fuel inlet fitting cavity. Clean and clear cavity and fuel supply tract.

Worn or dirty inlet valve or seat. Clean or replace valve and clean seat.

Improper fuel level in float bowl. Adjust float tab for correct fuel level.


1. Engine run switch in OFF position.

2. Ignition switch not ON.

3. Discharged battery, loose or corroded connections (solenoid


4. Starter control circuit, relay or solenoid not functioning.

5. Electric starter shaft pinion gear not engaging or overrunning

clutch slipping.

6. TSM/TSSM bank angle sensor tripped and ignition

switch not cycled OFF then ON.

Engine Turns Over But Does Not Start

1. Fuel tank empty or fuel valve turned off.

2. Fuel valve or fuel strainer clogged.

3. Engine flooded with gasoline as a result of overuse of


4. Vacuum hose to fuel supply valve disconnected, leaking

or pinched.

5. Discharged battery, loose or broken battery terminal connections.

6. Fouled spark plugs.

7. Spark plug cables in poor condition and shorting, cable

connections loose or cables connected to incorrect cylinders.

8. Ignition timing incorrect due to faulty coil, ICM or sensors

(MAP, CKP and/or TSM/TSSM).

9. Loose wire connection at coil or battery connection or

plug between crank position sensor (CKP) and ignition

control module (ICM).

10. Ignition coil not functioning.

11. Ignition control module (ICM) not functioning.

12. Crank position sensor (CKP) not functioning.

13. Sticking or damaged valve or valves.

14. Engine oil too heavy (winter operation).


For cold weather starts, always disengage clutch.

Starts Hard

1. Spark plugs in poor condition, have improper gap or are

partially fouled.

2. Spark plug cables in poor condition.

3. Battery nearly discharged.

4. Loose wire connection at one of the battery terminals, at

coil, or at plug between crank position sensor (CKP) and

ignition control module (ICM).

5. Carburetor controls not adjusted correctly.

6. Ignition coil not functioning.

7. Engine oil too heavy (winter operation).

8. Fuel tank filler cap vent plugged, or carburetor fuel line

closed off restricting fuel flow.

9. Water or dirt in fuel system and carburetor.

10. Enrichener valve inoperative.

11. Air leak at intake manifold.

12. Valves sticking.

13. Air cleaner EVAP flapper (if equipped) stuck closed or


Starts But Runs Irregularly or Misses

1. Spark plugs in poor condition or partially fouled.

2. Spark plug cables in poor condition and shorting or leaking.

3. Spark plug gap too close or too wide.

4. Ignition coil, ignition control module (ICM) or crank position

sensor (CKP) not functioning properly.

5. Battery nearly discharged.

6. Damaged wire or loose connection at battery terminals

or coil.

7. Intermittent short circuit due to damaged wire insulation.

8. Water or dirt in fuel system and carburetor or fuel


9. Fuel tank filler cap vent plugged or carburetor float bowl

vent closed off.

10. Carburetor controls improperly adjusted.

11. Air leak at intake manifold or air cleaner.

12. Damaged intake or exhaust valve.

13. Weak or broken valve springs.

14. Incorrect valve timing.

15. Air cleaner EVAP flapper (if equipped) stuck closed or


Spark Plug Fouls Repeatedly

1. Incorrect spark plug.

2. Piston rings badly worn or broken.

3. Fuel mixture too rich (see 4.3 TROUBLESHOOTING).

4. Valve guides or seals badly worn or damaged.

Pre-Ignition or Detonation

(Knocks or Pings)

1. Excessive carbon deposit on piston head or combustion


2. Incorrect heat range spark plug.

3. Spark plugs not firing.

4. Ignition timing advanced. Ignition control module (ICM)

or crank position sensor (CKP) defective.

5. Fuel octane rating too low.

6. Intake manifold vacuum leak.


1. Insufficient oil supply, or oil not circulating.

2. Insufficient air flow over engine.

3. Leaking valves.

4. Heavy carbon deposit.

5. Ignition timing retarded. Ignition control module (ICM) or

crank position sensor (CKP) defective.

Valve Train Noise

1. Low oil pressure caused by oil feed pump not functioning

properly or oil passages obstructed.

2. Hydraulic lifter not functioning properly.

3. Bent push rod.

4. Cam, cam gears, or cam bushings worn.

5. Rocker arm binding on shaft.

6. Valve sticking in guide.

Excessive Vibration

1. Stabilizer links worn or loose, or stabilizer link brackets

loose or broken.

2. Isolators worn or isolator bolts loose or broken.

3. Isolator mounting brackets (left side of vehicle) loose or


4. Broken frame.

5. Primary chain badly worn or links tight as a result of

insufficient lubrication.

6. Wheels not aligned, rim(s) bent and/or tires worn.

7. Internal engine problem.




1. Clutch controls improperly adjusted.

2. Worn friction plates.

3. Insufficient clutch spring tension.

Drags or Does Not Release

1. Clutch controls improperly adjusted.

2. Clutch plates excessively warped.


Friction or steel plates worn, warped, or dragging.


Irregular/Inadequate Brake Action

1. Master cylinder reservoir low on fluid.

2. Brake system contains air bubbles.

3. Master cylinder or brake caliper piston(s) worn or parts


4. Brake pads contaminated with grease or oil.

5. Brake pads badly worn. Minimum lining thickness is 0.04

in. (1.02 mm).

6. Brake disc badly worn or warped.

7. Brake pads dragging or excessive braking (brake fades

due to heat buildup).

8. Insufficient brake pedal or hand lever free play (brake


Handling Irregularities

1. Tires improperly inflated. Check TIRE DATA Section. Do

not overinflate.

2. Loose wheel axle nuts. Tighten front nut to 50-55 ft-lbs

(68-75 Nm). Tighten rear nut to 72-78 ft-lbs (98-106 Nm).

3. Excessive wheel hub bearing play.

4. Rear wheel out of alignment with frame and front wheel.

5. Rims and tires out-of-true sideways. Tire runout should

not be more than 5/64 in. (2.0 mm).

6. Rims and tires out-of-round or eccentric with hub. Tire

runout should not be more than 3/32 in. (2.4 mm).

7. Loose spokes (laced wheel vehicles only).

8. Irregular or peaked front tire tread wear.

9. Tire and wheel unbalanced.

10. Steering head bearings improperly adjusted. Correct

adjustment, and replace pitted or worn bearings and


11. Shock absorbers not functioning normally.

12. Heavy front end loading. Non-standard equipment on the

front end (such as heavy radio receivers, extra lighting

equipment, or luggage) tends to cause unstable handling.

13. Engine mounts and/or stabilizer links loose, worn or