What to Look for When Buying an ATV

December 28th, 2021 by


A record 1.27 million ATVs were sold across the world in 2020. Before joining all these riders out on the trails, it’s important to know what to look for when buying an ATV. Otherwise, you face paying for something that you won’t enjoy long-term.

In this article, we discuss what to look for when buying an ATV. We also compare used ATVs and new ATVs so you can decide which is best. Continue reading if you want to find an ATV that’s perfect for your needs.


Where to Start

Before buying an ATV, you need to start by asking yourself some questions. Taking the time to ask the right questions helps you learn about your goals for buying an ATV.

It also helps you make some important decisions once you start looking at an ATV for sale. The goal is to be prepared by considering what you want before you start shopping.


Why Do You Want to Purchase an ATV?

You may have always had a dream of buying an ATV. You may have also just recently thought they looked fun and wanted one for yourself. Whatever the case may be, ask yourself why you want an ATV.

Wanting an ATV to use for work is going to lead you in a very different direction than if you wanted one intended for sport. You may want one that’s multi-purpose, which can send you in yet another direction entirely.


Who Will Use the ATV?

When looking at where to buy an ATV, consider who is going to be riding it. Is it just you or will there be multiple riders? Questions like these can help you find something that works for every rider.

If your plan is to have one ATV that all family members can ride or there are significant age differences between riders, you might need to reconsider. No one under 16 should operate an ATV. And ATVs that are too heavy and large can be dangerous for smaller riders.


What Is Your Budget?

Before buying an ATV, be sure to set your budget. This part is tricky for many would-be riders because they forget to factor in all the important aspects of owning an ATV.

You’ll need to invest in safety gear such as a helmet, safety goggles, and riding gloves. Factor in maintenance as well to be sure you can keep your ATV in good shape.


New ATV or Used ATV

The above questions should help you decide whether you want to purchase a new ATV or a used ATV, but there’s still more to consider. While each option comes with its own benefits, neither one is perfect for every rider.

One of the biggest concerns for riders is the cost. While cost can vary significantly between new and used models, remember to factor in other details before making a final decision.


Pros of a New ATV

One of the benefits of a new ATV is not having to worry about how a previous owner cared for it. You don’t have to consider whether there are any shoddy repairs or hard-to-see damage.

You’ll receive additional peace of mind when buying a new ATV since they more often than not come with a manufacturer’s warranty. This means that if something goes wrong in the first six to 12 months (depending on the warranty), you’re covered.

Another important benefit of a new ATV is less maintenance. Since a new ATV has no riding history, it’s in the best shape it’ll ever be in. You won’t have to worry as much about costly repairs as long as you keep up on maintenance and take good care of it.


Cons of a New ATV

One of the biggest reasons buyers don’t invest in a new ATV is because it comes with a higher price tag. You have to ask yourself if the additional peace of mind and the reduced repair costs are worth the cost.

You also have to worry about depreciation. You’re almost certainly unlikely to recoup the amount of money you spent on your new ATV when you go to sell it. Some models lose up to 30 percent of their value after just a few years.


Pros of a Used ATV

A used ATV is a much more affordable option for those with a tighter budget. Because of the lower cost, you have the opportunity to afford a higher-quality model that has more of the features you’re looking for.

If you plan on making significant upgrades once you purchase an ATV, a used model at a lower cost may be the best option. Instead of investing in a bunch of features that you won’t keep, save the money for the actual upgrades.

Whether you’re buying a new ATV or a used ATV, it’s a significant investment. However, the lower cost of a used unit means there’s less pressure to keep it in pristine condition. You can relax just a little bit more every time you go out.


Cons of a Used ATV

You don’t get a warranty when you buy a used ATV. So if something goes wrong with it, you’re responsible for the cost of making repairs.

Another detriment is not knowing the background of the unit. A previous owner may have taken poor care of it. This means you may be financially responsible for getting it back into good shape if it falls apart after buying it.


Buying an ATV That’s Right for You

Regardless of whether you choose a new or used ATV, it’s important to purchase an ATV that’s right for your needs. Consider your experience level and your reason for buying an ATV.

If you’re new to the sport, you may want to avoid buying the most powerful models in favour of something that’s more beginner-friendly. If the ATV is a gift, think about what the recipient wants out of it.


Choose the Right Type

There are four main types of ATVs available. These include children ATVs, side-by-side ATVs, utility ATVs, and sport ATVs. Children’s ATVs are best for young kids and teenagers.

Side-by-sides are great for riders who need to transport multiple people and/or gear. Utility ATVs are the most popular type and are the most versatile option. They’re perfect for work, hunting, and recreational use.

Sport ATVs are the second-most popular type of ATV. They are very lightweight and can handle rough terrains and bumps at higher speeds. Their superior suspension makes them preferable for sports use.


Find the Right Size

If you’ve done any amount of research into how and where to buy an ATV, you know that ATVs come in different sizes. These sizes are based on age, size, and experience.

ATV sizes range from 50 inches long up to 95 inches long with an average of 83 inches. However, the engine displacement or volume/power of the engine is often considered more important than length. This is measured in cubic centimetres (cc).

Younger kids would do best on a 150cc ATV and new riders should stick to something under 500cc. Only experienced riders and professionals should purchase an ATV over 500cc.


Consider Features

Depending on your ATV needs, some features will be more beneficial than others. For example, Two-wheel drive ATVs are less versatile but more cost-friendly and lighter than those with four-wheel drive.

Four-wheel drive offers better traction in almost all terrain and conditions. Compare and contrast various features such as single vs twin-cylinder engines and power steering vs no power steering. This helps ensure the functionality you need.


Inspect Before Buying an ATV

Be sure to inspect before buying an ATV, especially if it’s used. You don’t want to miss a major flaw or damage and have to deal with it later. A few examples of parts to inspect include tires, bearings and joints, and the engine.

Check the tires for cracks and heavy wear. New tires are a big expense, so paying attention to the quality can either give you bargaining power or tell you to look elsewhere.

You also need to check the bearings and ball joints. Worn-out bearings and ball joints result in instability and wobbly steering. These can be costly to replace and result in serious injury if they separate while the ATV is in use.

Don’t forget to take a close look at the engine. Search for signs of oil leaks by wiping a rag around the head gasket. You can also see if the oil level is low or if metallic particles are present.


Purchase an ATV From a Reputable Seller

When you’re ready to purchase an ATV, be sure to choose a reputable seller. Not only can this lower the risk involved with purchasing a used ATV from a private seller, but it can also get you better service and more options.

At Westshore Marine & Leisure, our goal is to find the ATV that works best for you. We also aim to help you keep it in the best shape possible by offering an on-site service center.


Buying an ATV with Confidence

Knowing what to look for when buying an ATV can make the process easier and give you a boost in confidence. Start by asking yourself the important questions, then factor in your preferences before making a final selection.

Whether you’re looking for a new ATV or a used ATV, you can purchase an ATV from our supply.

Posted in Buying An ATV