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For most people, their ATV is used only part of the year, during the summer, spring and fall. In winter, it needs to be stored properly. If you want to prevent carburetor damage and keep the fuel system strong, there are a few things to do first, like removing the oil filter, and disconnecting the battery. Storing an ATV means keeping it sheltered from weather and water as well; moisture can cause rust and corrosion.
The best place to store an ATV is inside either in a shed or in your garage. because most people do not have additional room in the garage for an ATV, an outdoor shed or storage unit is the next best idea. While this might sound expensive, consider the downsides to storing the vehicle outside during the winter. Damage to the exterior, frame and fuel system (from frozen gas lines and ice build up) will far eclipse the cost of placing the ATV in a storage unit. Make sure the unit is heated and secure with a gate and locking garage-style door. Ground floor units are a must as well, because you will not be able to transport the vehicle to upper floors.
ATV Covers and Outdoor Storage
Another idea, if you do not have access to an indoor storage unit is to store the vehicle outside in a partially protected area. The corridor area between two closely neighboring homes, or beside a large structure like a barn, provides some protection from wind. Use a high-quality ATV cover made from a durable synthetic fabric such as nylon or polyester. Tie the cover securely to the ATV. Forget a canvas cover as this will retain water that promotes rust. When storing outdoors, remove the entire battery, and change the air and oil filters. Also clean the ATV and lubricate it generously. Change the oil to a synthetic blend to prevent freeze up as well.
Another option for interior storage is to place the ATV on a lift or an elevated rack. This provides more room for other items and keeps the vehicles out of the way. An elevated rack may be installed in a large garage, shed or barn. The lift system is an option if you need to store multiple ATVs. It is also more secure as the lift must be operated to access the ATV.
Partially Covered Storage
A partially covered storage area is one that has a metal roof or superstructure over an asphalt of concrete parking space. This option is often cheaper than a fully enclosed storage unit, but it allows some exposure to the elements. If you use this type of unit, make sure the area is secure and has a locked gate. If other people have access to the area, you should use video monitoring. Remove and change the air filters, oil filters and perform an oil change adding a synthetic oil to the vehicle, just as you would do for storage outdoors.
Steve Smith has published articles on a wide range of topics including cars, travel, lifestyle, business, golf, weddings and careers. His articles, features and news stories have appeared in newspapers, consumer magazines and on various websites. Smith holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and journalism from University of New Hampshire Durham.