• Steven E. Overmyer

Keeping Your ATV/UTV in Peak Condition

An ATV or side-by-side isn’t just a toy - it’s an investment. You’ve spent a pretty penny on your offroad vehicle, and naturally, you want to get the most out of it. You might think that means riding your ATV or UTV as often as possible, but it also means making sure it lasts. You know that you should change the oil and filters regularly, but to really ensure peak performance, take it to the next level.

Heat will wear down your engine

More stress on your machine will produce more heat, and more heat means less viscosity in your oils; in other words, the oils will thin out. When this happen, the liquid can’t properly lubricate all of the metal parts inside of you vehicle, and they’ll rub together in a way that they’re not supposed to.

High heat also leads to more sludge inside of the engine. The sludge will clog up lines leading to the engine, keeping it from getting the oil that it needs to run properly. As time passes, your engine will wear down and eventually give out - which is an expensive fix.

Synthetic lubricants mean better performance

Now that we’ve established that stress and heat wear down the engine, how can you prevent it? You want to ride to your heart’s delight, right? Fortunately, the solution is pretty simple; invest in high-quality synthetic lubricants. They’re more resistant to high levels of heat, and allow for better lubrication within the vehicle. Synthetics are pricier, but think of it as another upgrade or investment; it’ll absolutely pay off in the long run.

Keep it clean

I know, I know - you like getting your machine dirty just as much as the next guy. And that’s totally fine; just be sure to wash it frequently. Caked-on mud will trap moisture against your ATV or UTV, leading to rust formation.

The dangers of dirt and mud go beyond aesthetics, too. The mess will eventually find its way inside of the air filter, vents, and other important parts inside of your vehicle. If you want your engine to last (and trust us, you do), then keep your machine clean and change your air filter regularly.

Treat the fuel

Speaking of dirt - it can find it’s way into the gas tank, too. Water, dirt, and mud are detrimental to the fuel system and engine, so keep this in mind while you’re out riding. Gas also breaks down over time, clogging up your fuel lines and injectors. Eventually, your fuel system will fall apart. To keep this from happening, treat the gas with fuel stabilizer. It only costs a few bucks, and will keep you from visiting the mechanic anytime soon.

Know your limitations

Above all else, know what your machine is capable of (and what it isn’t). Don’t travel up or down steep hills, submerge it in deep mud puddles, or try to tackle terrain that it’s not suited for. If you don’t wind up destroying your vehicle, at the very least, you’ll wear it down - and all of that wear and tear takes a toll over time. If it seems like a bad idea, it probably is.

Is your ATV or UTV due for a service? Bring it by the service department at Outdoor Powersports in Gainesville, Texas. If you’re looking to buy a new one, you can browse our extensive inventory of new and used offroad vehicles.

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