What You Should Be Doing for Routine Maintenance
The weather is starting to get warmer, the birds are coming home from migration, and the flowers are almost in bloom. Spring is right around the corner so you know what that means: mudding season is almost here!
The most wonderful time of year for ATV enthusiasts is coming up fast, so are you ready for it? Not just ready to ride, but have you done your routine maintenance this year? Of course, we all just want to get out on the trails, but before we take our first ride of the year let’s get ready for spring wit this ATV maintenance checklist.
Annual Routine Maintenance Checklist
So before we get started, you might be asking, how often should I be doing maintenance on my ATV? Of course, you want to address any mechanical issues you have as they come up. Waiting on any small issue can turn it into a more serious issue.
However, outside of emergency repairs or replacements, you want to run through your maintenance checklist at least once every year. We recommend doing it when winter rolls around and the season is over. That way spring finally arrives you’ll be good to go! But if you’re not a model citizen like us, doing it before the spring season starts is perfect, too.
Check Your Fluid Levels
The first thing you want to do when you’re doing your pre-season tune-up is to check your fluid levels. That means your oil of course, but also things like your brake fluid and even your fuel. If you left your ATV sitting over the winter with any fluid in it, make sure you check them.
You want to check to see what your oil looks like as well. If it’s chunky or grimy at all, it’s time for an oil change. You also want to look out for a milky, brown color to your oil. This could possibly mean that water has leaked into your oil tank. This could cause serious damage to your engine and your ATV if you don’t swap it out.
Check Your Tires
Your next step should be taking a look at your tires. You want to check the air pressure, of course (check out your owner’s manual for factory recommendations). However, you also want to be checking your tread depths. Your tire’s ability to grip the dirt is what keeps you safely stopping, so it’s important to check.
Also, take a look at your valves and make sure they aren’t leaking. Keeping your tire pressure at the correct level and keeping it there consistently keeps you safe. A leaking valve may not seem like a make-or-break thing right now, but it becomes a bigger problem if left unchecked.
Cleaning or Replacing Your Air Filter
You love mud. Your ATV loves mud. Your air filters do not love mud. But they’re along for the ride, so they’re gonna get dirty. It’s not very glamorous, but making your air filters part of your yearly maintenance routine is going to keep your ATV running like new. When your filters get dirty it’s allowing less air intake to your engine. This seriously hinders your performance.
Now, you can clean your air filters. It’s not very difficult and you can do it pretty quickly. However, just cleaning them isn’t going to make your ATV run as well as a full replacement. We would definitely recommend a full swap out at least every other year. However, if you change your air filters every year, you’re going to notice that difference in performance.
The Nuts and Bolts
Speaking of not very glamorous, this is another job that doesn’t get the press it deserves. Every year you definitely want to run over your ATV with a fine-tooth comb checking all of your screws, nuts, and bolts. A year of rough riding is sure to knock a few loose.
The most important place to check is your undercarriage. This is the part of your ATV that’s taking the most wear and tear. If you find any that are seriously rusted, go ahead and swap them out. It may not be the first thing you think about when you’re going over your maintenance checklist, but it’s definitely important.
Keeping Your ATV in Good Health with a Yearly ATV Maintenance Checklist
You want your ATV to be ready for anything. You want to be able to hit any hill, get through any muddy trail, and do it all easily. The more maintenance you perform on your ATV the easier it’s going to be on you and your machine.
You wouldn’t skip your kids’ yearly physicals and your ATV is like your baby right? So you have to get it in for that annual checkup so it can give you a full day’s ride every time.
We hope this ATV maintenance checklist was helpful! If you need some more helpful tips, take a look at our blog for tips on mudding this spring!