Winter ATV Maintenance

We’ve been having one of the mildest winters I can remember as a lifelong New York State resident. Where we’re usually deep in the middle of snowmobile season, we were fortunate to have enough snow to get our demo riders out at the Genesee Forestry a few weeks ago. With all that in mind, you may be putting your ATV to good use this winter. Of course the more you use a machine, the better and more frequent maintenance is needed. Though these are some general tips, please check your machine’s owner’s manual for specific maintenance needs.

If you ride through snow and ice, be sure to clean off as much snow and ice from the radiator while riding and again off of the whole machine before storing the ATV post-ride. Otherwise, this water can re-freeze and make using your ATV the next time a pain. Additionally, make sure you don’t force any plastic pieces that are frozen. Plastic can break off in cold temperatures.

Winter fuel in New York means that sometimes gas line anti-freeze is already added to it at the pumps. For that reason, be cautious when adding any more. One of the best things you can do is to keep the fuel level up in your ATV to avoid condensation forming in your fuel tank and water getting in the fuel. If your machine is an EFI system, you’re going to have a much easier time getting it started when you’re ready for the cold air ride. If you have a carburetor, you may need to bring your ATV in to our Appolson’s service department so we can jet your carburetor for you. The jetting process finds the right combustible combination of fuel and air for your machine to run at its best.

When performing an oil change, whether it is in the winter or summer, you should always change the oil filter. In the winter, an oil change should include paying attention to the viscosity and temperature range on your oil. Always check your ATV’s particular owner’s manual for the best oil for your machine, or check with our Parts Manager Josh when stopping into the store.

If you follow these tips and tricks or stop in and talk to our knowledgeable staff, you should be able to enjoy this extra riding time. Make sure you give your ATV a little longer to warm up, and don’t forget to add an extra layer of clothing to your body to keep yourself warm. Let us know your favorite riding spots this winter and send us any cool pictures of your ride!

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