How to Start an ATV? [Right Way]

ATVs are a thrilling ride for many people, as they bring the adrenaline rush that you’re missing in your daily, boring routine. So, if you’ve bought a new model but know nothing about starting an ATV, you’ve come to the right place.

Since these vehicles operate differently than regular cars, it can be tricky to navigate them at the start. But, this guide will cover a few basic things to help you start them off in the right way.

In the end, you will be able to make your ATV run in almost every situation. So let’s go!

Before You Start An ATV

  • Check the tank to make sure there is enough fuel to cover the required distance
  • Shift the transmission to a neutral position
  • Wear safety gear for protection
  • Get all the legal information about riding ATVs in your state
  • Make sure the battery is fully charged

What if The ATV is Not Getting Fuel?

If the plug remains dry immediately after starting the motorcycle, you will need to take a few extra steps. This may involve a problem with the pumps or clogging of a pipeline between the carburetors and the tank.

What if The ATV is Not Getting Fuel

Occasionally, the smells or debris within your tanks can lead to blockages in fuel supplies. In addition, you may find contaminants that have spoiled your whole system and need to be removed.

The steps involved differ according to the model of the vehicle with EFI.

How to Charge an ATV Battery

If the battery is not charged, you need to make it powerful enough to start the engine. Follow these steps to make it come to life:

How to Charge an ATV Battery

  • Step 1: Take out the battery from under the seat. For this purpose, remove all the connecting cables and pull the battery out of the walls.
  • Step 2: Place the battery and charger near a power outlet. Connect the jumper wire clamps on the right terminals of the battery and charger.
  • Step 3: Plug the charger into an outlet and keep a constant voltage of 12 volts. The best way to do it is to trickle charge it at 2 amps for about 2 hours. Otherwise, you can set the charger on 4-volt output and leave it for 40–50 minutes.
  • Step 4: Once charged, unplug it and place it back in your ATV. Connect all the wires to their right positions and put the seat back in.

How to Start the ATV

Once you’ve ensured all the things are in their place, you are ready to start the ATV. Follow these simple steps to get it done.

How to Start the ATV

Step 1: Turn the Levers On

First, you need to turn on the fuel valve to make it flow in the fuel lines. Next, push the ignition switch (also known as the kill switch) and pull up the choke to start a cold engine.

Step 2: Apply the Brake Lever

Try pulling the brake lever on your vehicle. If it is working correctly, it will be evident that the engine is ready to start. Turn on the engine switch at your thumb’s distance on the left side.

Now pull both of your brake levers before changing the gear. Otherwise, it will move forward with a jerk, toppling you over the ride. If your ATV is new, it may need to be throttled for a few minutes to get the gas into the carburetor.

Step 3: Shift to Your Riding Transmission

Next, remove your parking brake (if it has) and shift the gear upward from the neutral position. The gear should be easily accessible with the left foot.

Step 4: Release Brake and Go

Now slowly release both of the brakes to let it go.

Starting an ATV in Winters

If your ATV has a cold engine due to winters, spark plugs won’t give much power to start it. It would help if you had extra support for the ignition system to kick. Actuate the choke to provide enough support by letting more fuel into the carburetor.

Starting an ATV in Winters

You can find the choke switch either on the top of the carburetor or on the left handle of most ATVs. Pull it to let the cold engine roar. Once you’re successful in starting it, don’t forget to turn the choke off. Otherwise, the engine would overheat and consume more fuel with every second.

Start a Long Sitting ATV

Reviving an ATV after it has been dormant for a long time is quite challenging. You need to check the fuel line, gas tank, fuel filter, engine oil, spark plugs, and many other things.

Start a Long Sitting ATV

Many vital engine components may have been rusted, so you’ll need to replace them. Read below to get your old all-terrain vehicle going.

1. Drain The Old Fuel

After sitting for a long time, the gas tank will be holding bad fuel. It will be rotten enough to harm your ATV engine. You need to drain the old fuel and fill up the fresh stock.

Turn off the gas intake valve and remove the drain plug. Also, keep your head away and wear a mask as the sour smell of bad fuel is disgusting. You will also need to clean all the gummy content that sticks to the tank.

2. Clean the Air Filter

The gummy consistency will also cause a clogged fuel filter. This clogged air filter will restrict the flow, and the engine will not get enough air. You need to clean that clogged air filter from this gummy content, or the last option is to replace it.

3. Clean the Carburetor

The next important thing is the carburetor. The carburetor controls the intake plug for air and gas fuel. If your ATV has electronic fuel injectors, then you might be lucky. Because if you have the carb-ATV, then spraying some cleaning liquids won’t be enough.

Take out the carburetor and open it apart. You will need a rebuilt kit to clean it and place it back in the ATV. Otherwise, you have to choose a costly option and change it to a new one.

4. Replace the Oil and Spark Plug

Before operating in these areas, ensure that the engine stop switch is turned off. Next, you will need to replace the spark plug. Take out the spark plug wire and remove the piece from the hole. Get a new one and insert it in its place.

The other thing is to change the engine oil. Remove the drainage cap and let it flow out. Remember to put a container below before you remove the cap. Otherwise, you will spill some engine oil on the ground.

5. Charge or Replace the Battery

Lastly, we come to the ATV battery and other electronic items. If you own an automatic ATV, you will need to replace the main fuse. Turn off the run switch before you start. You can charge the battery by following the steps mentioned above. But if you’ve got a dead battery, all you can do is replace it with a new one.

You will need a fully charged battery to generate enough spark in the spark plug. If you do not have any power outlet nearby, you can try other methods we’re going to mention below.

Finally, Start!

When you are done with all the above tasks, it’s time to check your hard work. Hit the run switch and hear the engine growl. If you have an electric starter, press the starter button.

What if your ATV is a 4×4?

If you have a 4×4 ATV, you will also need to change the differential oil. Your ATV will have two differentials; front and rear. Look at the manual to check which diff oil is suitable for your vehicle. Buy the bottle and replace the contents with the old one.

How to Push Start an ATV

To push-start an ATV, you will need help from someone or take your ATV to any hilltop. If you have an automatic ATV, put it in any gear. But if it is manual, put it in 2nd gear.

Get some hands to push the automobile to gain some momentum with gear. Or you can use another’s vehicle to tie your ATV and get a pull start. But you can also do it alone if you are in a hilly area.

Take your ATV to a hilltop with enough slope to give you sufficient speed. Shift into gear and give some jerks to roll down the slope. It will do the job.

How to Jump-Start an ATV

A friend in need is a friend indeed. You will definitely remember this proverb if your friend also brings jumper cables with his fully charged ATV. Well, jokes aside, here’s how you can jump-start a dead battery.

Bring both ATVs close enough to the cables’ length to operate. Connect the red and black wires to the right terminals of a dead battery. Let the charged battery run for a couple of minutes before attaching the other ends of jumper cables. Then connect both batteries, and it will start the ATV. Remember, you don’t turn off your ATV for 30 minutes after removing cables. The empty battery will charge in the meantime.

Final Thoughts

Starting an ATV can be tricky due to some additional switches, but it is a fun and thrilling ride. If your ATV is new, starting it won’t be a problem. But if you are going to give it a shot after a long time, you’ll have to do some cleaning and replacing. We’ve given you all the methods to start your ATV in any situation. So go and give your adrenaline a rush.