Need extra space to store your ATV? Prepare it for properly for long term storage with these helpful tips and guides to protect your ATV.Need extra space to store your ATV? Prepare it for properly for long term storage with these helpful tips and guides to protect your ATV.Storage Tips

How to Prepare an ATV Car for Long Term Storage

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Your all-terrain vehicle (ATV) goes where most city cars can't. It's your go-to vehicle for off-roading adventures and rugged fun. Whether you are exploring new terrain or going on a joyride with some friends, an ATV is a fun part of your life that you want to take care of. When it's time to put your ATV in for the winter, you should follow some key maintenance steps to ensure that it is in the same condition when you take it out in the spring.

Avoid the most common problems that happen in the winter due to cold temperatures, condensation, and chemical breakdowns by taking some proactive, preventative steps. To have many years of enjoyable ATV riding, here are some winterizing steps that you should do every year before storage.

Clean Your ATV

It's no secret that ATVs get a lot of contact with mud and dirt. Though you should clean off dirt regularly during the riding season, your ATV should be given a complete and thorough clean right before it's put in storage. Make sure that there is no speck of grime on it so that nothing corrodes or paint or reduces its luster during its time and storage. Don't just clean the most visible places, but also get underneath the vehicle as well so that no mechanical parts corrode while in storage.

Apply Lubrication & Change Oil

ATVs are prone to bug splats and brake dust, which can cause corrosion during the winter corrosion. Lubricate everything that can corrode in storage such as the vehicle’s cables, sprockets, chains, exhaust pipes, lug nuts, etc. Overall, if it's anything that is made of metal and that could corrode and wear down while staying in one spot for a while, apply the manufacturer recommended lubricant to keep it protected from moisture and other conditions that can wear down.

Before winterizing, you should change the oil and oil filter. Leaving old oil in the ATV over the winter can corrode the inside of the vehicle due to the higher levels of acid and combustion by-products in dirty oil. Fresh oil resolves this problem and ensures that your vehicle does not run on bad oil next spring.

Apply Coolant & Other Recommended Fluids

If your ATV is a machine that is cooled by liquid, top up the coolant before you store it. If the coolant is older than two years, change it entirely. Each vehicle will have its own manufacturer’s recommended coolant, which typically includes anti-freeze protection. You should also refresh or change your brake fluid to prevent any malfunctions in your ATV’s spring startup.

Manage the Fuel System

If you plan to store your vehicle in a long-term storage facility, you must first check with the facility if you can keep fuel in your ATV. If you can, you must fill the tank and add a fuel stabilizer. If you cannot keep fuel in your ATV, then you must find a responsible place to dispose of the fuel. Each place is different regarding the rules, so be sure to check before you do anything with your vehicle. If you plan to store your ATV in a garage or a shed on your property, then you can choose either option.

To add a fuel stabilizer properly, fill the tank with fuel and run the engine for 10 minutes. This will allow the stabler to run through the lines. If you need more fuel, top the tank up to be about 7/8 full. Leaving just a bit of room on the top of the tank prevents condensation in the gas tank during the winter.

Take Care of the Engine and Surrounding Components

Your ATV’s cylinders should also be cared for according to the manufacturer’s recommendation to prevent corrosion. Some ATVs require the removal of the air filter and for spray fogging oil to be sprayed into the intake. You may also need to drain the carburetor and replace the spark plugs. Typically, you need to drain the carburetor for carburetor engines. To make sure that you are following the right procedure for your specific model, contact your vehicle’s manufacturer.

Since batteries drain while connected, take out the ATV’s battery and charge it. For the best results, store it while attached to a trickle charger so that it won’t be empty when you use it again. If the battery is older than 3 years, replace it.

What Size Storage Unit Do I Need for My ATV?

Whether you have a sport or utility ATV, a 5×10 storage space is your best bet. You’ll have extra room to store your equipment as well. If you are considering anything smaller like a 5×5 storage unit, keep in mind it will be a very tight fit.

Checklist for Long Term ATV Storage

Your ATV needs special care when putting it into storage. Use this checklist to make sure it’s ready to go for the next adventure.

  1. Clean the Exterior: Soap it up, rinse it down, and dry it off. Make sure everything is dry to prevent rust.
  2. Add a Fuel Stabilizer: Fuel has a shelf life of about 3 to 4 months so make sure you add a fuel stabilizer to make it last longer.
  3. Disconnect the Battery: Batteries will lose their charge when kept plugged in and in storage. Make sure you store it in a cool, dry place. Storing it in colder temperatures will slow down the charge loss from storage. You may also consider hooking it to a battery tender. A battery tender uses very little juice to keep the battery charged. Don’t forget to remove it from your machine after you take it out of storage.
  4. Change the Oil: Be sure to change the filter and oil to protect your engine over time.
  5. Inflate Tires: For extended storage periods, inflate your ATVs tires to prevent them from becoming flat on one side. Utilize blocks during colder months.
  6. Cover Your ATV: Protect your ATV from dirt, grime, and the elements by placing a cotton cover over it.
  7. Update Insurance: When it comes to insurance be sure that your coverage is updated to include Storage Rentals of America as the storage location.

Your Worry-Free ATV Storage Solutions

The benefits of storing your ATV with Storage Rentals of America include:

  • Affordable, clean, and well-lit interior storage units to suit your storage needs. From small engine vehicles to full size cars, we have storage units of all sizes.
  • We offer flexible lease terms for either short or long-term storage. Money saving discounts are available on many of our units.
  • Secure self-storage with electronic gates and 24/7 video monitoring at our locations ensure your items are protected.
  • Storage Rentals of America has many convenient locations in Delaware, Florida, Kentucky, New Jersey, Ohio, and South Carolina.

What Documentation is Required?

You’ll need to bring in three documents when you come in and rent with us. A government issued ID like a driver’s license or passport, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance. Check with your insurance provider to see if your policy covers storing your ATV in long term storage and bring in a copy.

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