Storing your UTV for the winter
Last week we went over a few things you should do to prepare your UTV for fun in the snow and ice. But what about those of you who really don’t like the cold? Or maybe you feel like you’ve had your fun this winter season and are ready to give your UTV a break.
Either way, you don’t just want to park your UTV and say goodbye until tulips start showing their faces. Taking the time to properly store your UTV and winterize it accordingly will help you to extend the life of your machine and quickly jump back in the saddle when spring arrives.
Here are a few things you’ll want to do before storing your toy for the winter.
Give your UTV a good wash, this includes your windshield. You should be washing your vehicle after each use, but it is especially important before putting it in storage. A thorough cleaning of your UTV will help to avoid any deterioration of the exterior. So scrub the UTV from top to bottom, and don’t forget those hard to reach places. Use a toothbrush if necessary! Dry the UTV completely and consider a wax for even more protection.
UNDER THE HOOD
Now that the outside is taken care of, it’s time to take a look at the inside. You’ll want to change the oil in your UTV and the oil filter. Doing so will remove any carbon, dirt, debris or old oil. Keeping all of these out during the winter will help you avoid corrosion in your machine. You’ll also want to grease the drive components and suspension, which is a task that can be easily forgotten. Grease and lube all fittings, and spray silicone lubricant on all moving parts. You should also check the belts and suspensions.
You’ll also want to get some fuel stabilizer into your gas tank. Top it off with some premium, fresh gas and let the UTV run for about five to 10 minutes so that the stabilizer can work its way through the system. You can also wipe out your air filter box, and clean your air filter.
Another good idea is to unhook and remove your battery. This will help you avoid having to buy a new one each spring. Disconnect your battery and pull it out. If it needs it, clean the terminals, charge and top off the electrolytes. It’s important that you store the battery where it cannot freeze, and keep it out of reach of children. You may have heard not to store your battery directly on concrete, as it will drain the power. From what we’ve gathered, this is false. So just make sure to store your battery somewhere warm and protected from the elements.
Lastly, check the tire pressure and fill them to the correct psi. You may also consider placing your UTV on blocks. This, along with proper pressure will help to avoid weather cracking. If you can, store your UTV in a shed or garage to keep it out of harsh winter weather. Throw a tarp or cover over the top and your UTV will be snug as a bug awaiting your next, warmer, adventure.