Harley Davidson Street 500 Problems: How to Fix Them

Harley Davidson, a legendary brand in the motorcycle industry, has been a symbol of freedom and rebellion for over a century. With its distinctive roar and iconic design, Harley Davidson motorcycles have gained a loyal following of enthusiasts worldwide.

In 2014, the company introduced the Street 500 – a budget-friendly, entry-level model to attract a younger and more diverse customer base. However, despite its initial success, the Street 500 has faced its fair share of problems and criticisms.

Here, we will delve into Harley Davidson Street 500 problems, from mechanical concerns and failures to customer dissatisfaction. We will also explore the potential causes behind these problems and the steps Harley-Davidson took to address them.

Harley Davidson Street 500 Problems

List Of Harley Davidson Street 500 Problems And Solutions

List Of Harley Davidson Street 500 Problems And Solutions

Harley Street 500 is an outstanding bike. Yet, it showcases a few problems. It includes defective Clutch cables, a faulty rear brake, an error-prone exhaust system and a transparency problem with the mirror. Here is our  list of Harley Davidson Street 500 problems:

Problem Reason Solutions
Defective Clutch Pressing the clutch releases gas bubbles Claim a bike warranty or call a mechanic
Absence of Rear Reflectors Breaks federal law as motorbikes must have rear reflectors Buy and install rear reflectors
Saddlebags Detachments Unexpected separation from bike Repair saddlebags or reduce items from it
Faulty Brake DOT 4 brake fluid requires periodical flushes Flush the fluid
Faulty Exhaust System Exhaust pipe becomes hot Installation of external forward controls
Front Fender Troubles The voltage regulator comes close to the front fender Contact your dealer
Mirror Transparency Rear mirrors fail to reflect things clearly Purchase new and effective mirrors
Defective Front Tire Not good on a wet surface Tire replacement
Loose Sealing of Fuel Pump Fuel supply irregularity causes the bike to control Limit extended rides to 160km with a full tank


So, this was the basic concept of Harley-Davidson Street 500 problems. Most of these problems appeared after biking took it on the road for several miles. Again, some appeared due to faulty design, which Harley fixed or was about to fix later before they discontinued production.

The biker’s community has discussed the above battery real issue and found possible solutions. In this part, I will discuss them in detail after accumulating ideas from the community.

Problem – 1: Defective Clutch

Defective Clutch

Who doesn’t know the importance of a healthy clutch in motorbikes? It can help disconnect the engine components from the bike drivetrain and transmission system. As a result, you can lose control of the bike’s rear wheel. But the problem with the Harley Street 500 is that the bike releases a tank of gas-like bubbles when you press the clutch.

It can be pretty destructive to the clutch system. You cannot disconnect the engine from the transmission when this problem continues. Then, you may need to leave the bike garage for a long duration. Due to the severity of the issue, Harley recalled around 45K Street 500 motorcycles.

Possible Solutions

One of the recurring problems riders report is the engine overheating. This can occur during idling or slow-moving traffic, leading to concerns about the bike’s reliability and potential damage to the engine components. Possible solutions for a defective clutch on a Harley Davidson Street 500 could include:

  1. The clutch cable may need to be adjusted to ensure proper engagement and disengagement of the clutch plates. A qualified technician can do this.
  2. You may need to replace the clutch plates if worn or damaged. This requires removing the clutch assembly and installing new clutch plates.
  3. If the clutch cable is frayed or damaged, it may need to be replaced. A new clutch cable can help ensure smooth clutch operation.
  4. If the hydraulic clutch of your Harley Davidson Street 500 is equipped, clutch problems can be caused by air bubbles in the system. Bleeding the clutch system can help remove air and restore proper clutch function.
  5. To identify any potential exhaust issue, it is important to thoroughly inspect the clutch components, including the pressure plate, clutch basket, and release mechanism. If any parts are worn or damaged, they should be replaced.

Problem – 2: Absence Of Rear Reflectors

Absence Of Rear Reflectors

Motorbikes have built-in reflectors at the front and rear ends. But Harley didn’t think about it while making certain Harley Street 500. It produced this bike without any rear reflector. On the other hand, US federal law is concerned about having mandatory rear reflectors. This absence of reflectors gradually caused Harley to recall the 9285 Street 500 and Street 750 models. Usually, the problem persisted in bike models of 2014-15.

Possible Solutions

You may already know those rear reflectors are connected to the rider’s safety concern and the passersby. Maybe you can ignore it as it is not a performance-related issue. But there is an increased chance of getting fined as the bike’s rider. To solve the problem, meet the dealer for a recall. Alternatively, you can order a rear reflector and have a DIY task to install that on your bike.

Problem 3: Saddlebags Detachments

Saddlebags Detachments

Many Street 500 owners have reported several difficulties with the saddlebags detachments. Sometimes, the saddlebag is unexpectedly estranged from the bike. When we investigated the issue, we revealed the reason for it.

The spring wire of the receptacle couldn’t handle to maintain sufficient tension. As a result, it couldn’t prevent the mounting stud from disengaging. Around 25 motorbike owners’ manuals have reported this specific problem.

Possible Solutions

You can avail of a free repair from the dealer for a 2014 or 2015 model with a saddlebags detachment problem. This problem is another manufacturing defect available in many Street 500 bikes. An alternative solution can be reducing the items you want to fit in the saddlebag. Another solution can be riding a bike without a saddlebag if there is no emergency.

Problem 4: Faulty Brake

Faulty Brake

The Harley Davidson Street 500 brakes are relatively weak compared to other Harley bikes. Around 174k units of these bikes had faced this problem. Investigation reveals that the riders often need to flush the DOT 4 brake fluid.

But the owners faced brake leverFuel Economy problems as they forgot to flush it periodically. As a result, the problem led to deposit buildups on the valve of the ABS Hydraulic unit.

Possible Solutions

Harley Davidson Street 500, like any other motorcycle model, is not without its fair share of problems. While this iconic brand has long been synonymous with quality and performance, it is important to address the issues that some owners have encountered with the Street 500 model. Possible Solutions for Faulty Brake on Harley Davidson Street 500:

  1. Brake Fluid Check: Ensure the brake fresh fluid fuel pump sealant level is correct and top it up if necessary. Low brake fluid can lead to reduced braking performance.
  2. Brake Pad Inspection: Check the brake pads for wear and tear. If they are worn out, replace them with new ones. Worn brake pads can affect braking efficiency and should be replaced promptly.
  3. Bleed The Brakes: Air bubbles in the brake lines can cause a spongy brake feel. Bleeding the brakes will remove any air trapped in the system and restore proper braking performance.
  4. Caliper Inspection: Inspect the brake callipers for any signs of damage or malfunction. Suppose any issues are found; repair or replace the callipers accordingly.
  5. Brake Rotor Examination: Check the brake rotors for any signs of warping or excessive wear. If needed, replace the rotors to ensure smooth and effective braking.
  6. Adjust Brake Lever And Pedal: Check the brake lever and pedal for proper adjustment. Adjust them to achieve the desired braking feel if they are too loose or tight.
  7. Seek Professional Assistance: If you are unsure or unable to diagnose and fix the faulty brake line issue on your Harley Davidson Street 500, it is recommended to take your motorcycle to a qualified mechanic or authorized Harley Davidson service manual centre for further inspection and repair.

Problem 5: Faulty Exhaust System

Faulty Exhaust System

The exhaust pipe can absorb heat. So, continuous combustion makes the pipe extremely hot when you continue riding the bike for a long time. It is another manufacturing defect, as it wouldn’t be so if the company avoided keeping the rider’s legs close to the pipe.

This defective design can harm the rider’s body if he unconsciously touches the hot pipe with his legs. So, the long tourers always need to stay aware of it. Otherwise, they may burn their legs.

Possible Solutions

Another common complaint is clutch-related issues, with some riders experiencing difficulty engaging or disengaging the clutch. This can result in jerky gear shifts and a less enjoyable riding experience. Possible solutions for a faulty exhaust system on a Harley Davidson Street 500 may include the following:

  • Inspection And Repair: Inspect your motorcycle with a certified Harley Davidson technician or reputable mechanic to thoroughly inspect the exhaust system. They will be able to identify any faults or issues and provide suitable repair solutions.
  • Exhaust Leak Repair: In case of an exhaust leak, it may be necessary to replace damaged or worn-out gaskets, seals, or clamps. Welding may also be required to fix any cracks or holes in the exhaust pipes.
  • Exhaust System Upgrade: Consider upgrading to a higher quality aftermarket exhaust system specifically designed for your Harley Davidson Street 500. These systems often provide better performance and durability compared to the stock exhaust.
  • Regular Maintenance: To prevent future issues, it is important to maintain your exhaust system regularly. This includes checking for loose connections, ensuring proper tightening of bolts, and cleaning any accumulated debris or rust.

Problem – 6: Front Fender Troubles

Typically, the voltage regulator of a bike does not meet the front fender. But in Street 500, it is a common problem. There is a reason behind this fault. Earlier manufactured models of Harley were fabricated with relatively larger measurements depending on the thickness.

It led the company to produce thicker and less fragile-looking bikes. This thickness allows the voltage regulator’s top side to touch the front fender when you are riding the bike. Overall, the problem limits the freedom to steer the bike properly.

Possible Solutions

Front Fender Troubles – Possible Solutions for Harley-Davidson Street 500 problems. The front fender is crucial to the Harley Davidson Street 500 motorcycle. However, it is common for riders to encounter troubles related to the front fender. Here are some possible solutions for front fender issues on the Harley Davidson Street 500:

  1. Scratches Or Scuffs: If your front fender has minor scratches or scuffs, you can use a touch-up paint or polish specifically designed for motorcycles. This can help to conceal the imperfections and restore the appearance of your fender.
  2. Cracks Or Damage: In case of cracks or significant damage to the front fender, it is recommended to replace it entirely. Contact an authorized Harley Davidson dealer or a reputable motorcycle repair shop to purchase and install a new front fender.
  3. Loose Or Misaligned Fender: Check the mounting bolts if your front fender is loose or misaligned. Ensure you tighten them properly and adjust the fender position if necessary. If the problem persists, seeking professional assistance to realign or secure the fender correctly is advisable.
  4. Upgrading The Fender: If you frequently encounter front fender troubles, consider upgrading to a stronger or more durable aftermarket Fender. Many aftermarket options are available in various styles and materials that can enhance both the aesthetics and functionality of your Harley Davidson Street 500.

Problem – 7: Mirror Transparency

Many riders of HD Street 500 motorbikes have reported that their rear mirrors could not clarify what was behind them. Mainly, it appeared hard to see the rear things when the rider was on the move.

The problem is a representation of safety requirements violation for a bike. You may think of it as a less severe issue. But I can assure you that it can be dangerous when you need to change lanes and hear a noise from behind without seeing them.

Possible Solutions

Moreover, several owners have expressed dissatisfaction with the stock suspension system, which they feel does not adequately absorb bumps and impacts on the road, causing discomfort and reduced handling capabilities. Possible solutions to mirror transparency issues on a Harley Davidson Street 500 include:

  • Cleaning The Mirrors: Sometimes, the issue may be due to dirt, dust, or debris on the mirrors. Start by thoroughly cleaning the mirrors with a mild glass cleaner and a soft cloth. Ensure that the mirrors are free from any residue or streaks that could obstruct visibility.
  • Adjusting The Mirrors: If the mirrors are not positioned correctly, it can affect the transparency. Use the adjustable mount or screws on the mirrors to align them properly. Make sure they provide a clear view of the road behind you.
  • Replacing The Mirrors: If the transparency issue persists after cleaning and adjusting, it may be necessary to replace the mirrors altogether. Look for high-quality mirrors specifically designed for your Harley Davidson Street 500 model. Ensure they are compatible and provide optimal transparency.
  • Seeking Professional Assistance: If you cannot resolve the transparency issue on your own, it is recommended that you consult a professional mechanic or authorized Harley Davidson dealer. They will have the expertise and knowledge to diagnose and fix any specific problems related to mirror transparency on your motorcycle.

Problem 8: Defective Front Tire

Defective Front Tire

One motive for bringing Street 500 to the market was selling it at affordable rates. Unfortunately, affordability cannot avoid problems like defective front tires. Many riders reported comfortably riding on dry surfaces like roads or pavements. But they could not find it suitable on muddy or wet surfaces.

Hence, you can consider it a safety defect reported in around 615 units of Street 500 from Harley. Investigating the issue revealed that the wrong front tire installation caused the problem. This model has been fitted with 90190-19 front tires. But the recommended tires are 100190-19. As a result, the rider cannot get the expected performance.

Possible Solutions

Despite these reported problems, it is worth noting that Harley Davidson has taken steps to address these issues by continuously improving the manufacturing processes and design of their motorcycles. Possible solutions for a defective front tire on a Harley Davidson Street 500 include:

  • Tire Replacement: If the tire is beyond repair or has significant damage, replacing it with a new one is the best solution. Ensure you choose a tire compatible with your Harley Davidson Street 500 model.
  • Tire Inspection: If the tire is not severely damaged, it’s recommended to have it inspected by a professional. They will be able to determine if any repairs can come to fix the defect or if a replacement is necessary.
  • Regular Maintenance: To avoid future tire defects, it is essential to maintain your tires properly. Regularly check the tire pressure, tread wear, and overall condition. Additionally, ensure that you properly align the wheels.
  • Professional Assistance: If you are unsure about the best course of action or lack the necessary skills and tools for tire replacement or repair, you should seek professional assistance from a Harley Davidson authorized service center or a qualified motorcycle mechanic.

Problem – 9: Loose Sealing Of Fuel Pump

Loose Sealing Of Fuel Pump

HD Street 500 has another problem: the loose sealing at the fuel pump inlet. If the fuel remains low, it triggers resistance to the fuel supply under acceleration. Usually, it happens before you see the low fuel indicator showing up.

It can be a significant issue if you fail to detect the problem. Think about a rider accelerating the bike below 3.2 litres of fuel. Then, the bike hesitates briefly, restores the engine power quickly, and the rider loses control.

Possible Solutions

A passionate writer is driven by a deep love for storytelling, using their words to captivate and transport readers into different worlds and experiences. The loose sealing of the fuel pump in a Harley Davidson Street 500 can cause fuel leakage and potential performance issues. Here are some possible solutions to address this problem:

  1. Tighten The Fuel Pump Seal: Check if the fuel pump seal is loose and, if so, tighten it properly. Ensure that the seal is snug and secure to prevent any fuel leakage.
  2. Replace The Fuel Pump Seal: If tightening the seal doesn’t solve the recall issue, it may need to be replaced. Purchase a new fuel pump seal specifically designed for the Harley Davidson Street 500 and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installation.
  3. Inspect The Fuel Pump Assembly: While addressing the loose sealing, it’s a good idea to inspect the overall condition of the fuel pump assembly. Check for any signs of damage or wear that may contribute to the problem. If necessary, consider replacing or repairing the fuel pump assembly.
  4. Seek Professional Assistance: If you’re not comfortable performing these tasks yourself or if the issue persists despite your efforts, it’s recommended to consult with a certified Harley Davidson mechanic or authorized service center.

How To Find Cheap Repair Services For Harley Davidson Street 500?

How To Find Cheap Repair Services For Harley Davidson Street 500

Riders have reported experiencing sudden loss of power due to air pockets in the fuel lines of the Street 500. Regularly changing the air filter can help prevent engine problems and ensure optimal fuel efficiency. To find cheap repair services for the Harley Davidson Street 500, you can follow these steps:

  • Research Local Motorcycle Repair Shops: Look for motorcycle repair shops in your area that specialize in Harley Davidson motorcycles. Check their websites or call them to inquire about their services and pricing.
  • Ask For Recommendations: Reach out to fellow Harley Davidson owners or motorcycle enthusiasts for recommendations on affordable repair services. They may have first-hand experience with reliable and reasonably priced repair shops.
  • Compare Prices: Once you have a list of potential repair shops, compare their prices for the specific repairs or services you need. Remember that the cheapest option may not always be the best, so consider factors such as reputation, experience, and customer reviews.
  • Look For Independent Mechanics: Independent or smaller repair shops often have lower overhead costs than dealerships. They may offer more competitive prices for Harley Davidson repairs while providing quality service.
  • Utilize Online Platforms: Use online platforms such as forums, social media groups, or local classifieds to find individuals or businesses offering affordable repair services for Harley Davidson motorcycles. These platforms often have a community of motorcycle enthusiasts who can provide recommendations or direct you to cost-effective repair options.
  • Negotiate Or Inquire About Discounts: Once you have selected a repair shop, don’t hesitate to ask if they offer any discounts or if they can negotiate the price. Some shops may have special offers or be willing to work within your budget.


While the Harley Davidson Street 500 has faced some challenges and common issues since its release, the company has taken steps to address them and improve the overall quality of this bike. The Harley Davidson Street 500 problems have faced its fair share of problems.

From engine malfunctions to brake mechanical issues, these problems have been a cause for concern among riders. With a strong reputation and loyal customer base, Harley Davidson remains a top contender in the motorcycle industry.

There may be occasional problems with any vehicle, but it is important to consider most riders’ overall performance and satisfaction. With continuous innovation and dedication to customer satisfaction, Harley Davidson strives to provide top-notch products for its consumers.


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