A Definitive guide to Performing ATV Pre – Ride Maintenance

Depending on the condition of your four-wheeler, there is going to be a different level of maintenance you need to handle, but even with a brand new spyder machine, there are a few basic things you should do before you start riding.  To work on your ATV and check everything, you should get a few needed tools as well. A good rule of thumb this basic checks should be checked for optimal performance and experience during your ride.

Checklist of Pre Ride Checks

  • Fluid Levels – Always check the oil, fuel and coolant levels to make sure they are on and above the specified marks and if you find yourself driving harsh always check for any sort of leaks in these systems.

  • Air Filter – You want to make sure your air filter is both clean and oiled. Even if your ATV is brand new, the air filter will be clean, but it might not be oiled. If you’re brand new to ATV riding, then oiling your air filter may be unfamiliar, but it is essential. If your air filter is dry, use some air filter oil on it before putting it back in the air box. If the air filter is really dirty, swap it out for a new one.
  • Tire Pressure – Checking your tire pressure should be one of your regular checks before every ride. Especially before your first ride on an ATV, there is a good chance you will need to add quite a bit of air before that first ride. Over-inflated tires are more likely to pop or get damaged and under-inflated tires can ruin the rims.
  • Gas & Oil – If you are like me, you excitedly ride your ATV until it runs low on gas for the first time, then think for the first time about whether you can put regular gasoline in your ATV. The answer is mostly simple luckily. For most four-stroke ATVs, you can use regular gasoline, grade 87 or above, from your local gas station. If you don’t know the recommendation for your ATV, opt for 89 grades unless the 87 grade is ethanol free.  For oil, simply use 10w40 and change it a couple times a year. If you have a two-stroke ATV, the answer is a little more complicated. On a two-stroke ATV, you will need to mix gasoline with oil specifically designed for two-stroke engines and then use that gasoline-oil blend in your ATV.

  • Other Moving Parts – While you are checking the tire pressure, check the wheel nuts and axle nuts to make sure they aren’t loose or broken. Even new ATVs frequently arrive with loose lug nuts, so it is always smart to tighten and properly torque each lug nut on all four wheels. Then, grab the tires and rock them back and forth to try and detect worn-out bearings. Next, check all the levers like the brake levers, throttle, and foot.