Owning an ATV means you’re in for thrilling trail rides, along with year-round maintenance. Spring is all about preparing for the riding season. During summer and fall, ATV and UTV maintenance should be more routine. This will help avoid costly repairs and breakdowns so you can focus on months of backcountry riding. ATV Trader has five tips to help you maintain your ATV or UTV in the summer and fall.
1. Keep Your ATV Clean
After a day dominating the bogs, both you and your 4×4 are sure to be covered in mud. Before that muck gets too caked on, hose it down and tap off chunks of the mud with a rubber mallet. Give your ride a soapy lather and either towel dry it or let it air dry. Even if you don’t make as much of a mess on your ATV or UTV, regular cleaning helps reduce grease and other gunk that can ruin parts of your unit.
2. Watch Your Fluid Levels
Throughout your off-roading season, keep an eye on your fluid levels. Replacing your ATV’s oil, fuel, coolant, and other fluids during spring will set you up for easier maintenance the rest of the year. Throughout the summer and fall, check your fluid levels before each ride and top them off or change them as needed. Be sure to refer to the manufacturer’s recommendations on how often to replace these fluids.
3. Clean the Air Filter
After dusty or dirty rides, check to make sure the air filter is still clean and dry. Inspect both the air box and air filter, and wash both as needed. Depending on what your ATV or side-by-side is equipped with, your machine will either have a foam or paper air filter. A foam filter can be washed by hand with a safe cleaning solution that won’t break down the filter’s glue. A paper filter can simply be brushed off and blown with compressed air to remove most dirt.
4. Tighten Bolts
The bolts on your four-wheeler can loosen, especially on rough, bumpy rides. Have peace of mind knowing that everything is safe and secure by checking the nuts and bolts on your ATV or UTV. Before hitting the trails, grab a wrench and inspect every bolt you can, including on the handlebar, tires, and bumpers.
5. Maintain Tire Pressure
During riding season, keep an eye on your ATV’s tires. Tires should be inflated to the manufacturer’s specifications to maintain proper tread grip. Look for cracking or bubbles in your tires that can lead to a dangerous situation.
Conclusion: Spending a little time regularly maintaining your ATV or UTV can keep your unit working as good as new. A quick inspection of these key items on your off-roader can make the difference between months of smooth riding and a trip to the mechanic. Your unit can stay in tip-top shape until it’s time to prepare your ATV or UTV for winter.
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