What is high mileage for an ATV/Quadbike?

When planning to buy an ATV and invest a considerable amount in getting something worthy, one would think that what are the high miles that it could go? It might be a challenging and confusing question that can screw you up. But on surfing the internet, one gets to know that various opinions are there regarding the “high miles” for an ATV.

Some people say that the high miles for an ATV are not more than 5000 miles, while others think they may lie somewhat between 2000 to 3000 miles.

Generally speaking, around 10,000 miles can be regarded as the “high miles” for an ATV or Quadbike.

The most important thing is that despite covering and counting miles, how carefully it is maintained or how its previous owner has driven it. Even after covering the distance of 10,000 miles, the owner still has time and resources to look after the ATV; then, it may still go beyond 10,000 miles.

How many miles will an ATV/Quad Bike last?

How many years will a quad bike last?

If the quads are well maintained, then they could last for over 20 years. If a quad has covered a span of over 1000 hours and is still running like a new bike, it means that it has been regularly maintained. Most of the vehicles start posing problems once they have covered 10,000 miles. Of course, with little attention and time, the life of this vehicle can be greatly increased.

Nowadays, ATVs are manufactured by a number of renowned brands with different service agreements. In the old days, the value of an ATV was determined by how many miles it has covered, but now its outer looks and well maintenance speaks up for its price.

Likewise, vehicle maintenance, if a person is more conscious about the service and the spare parts of the ATV, replaces them timely, then obviously they will last for long.

For the new quads, it is difficult to predict how many miles they will go. It basically depends upon the fact that how are the quads driven, what are the driving conditions, and how often are they driven.

The well-maintained ATVs over the ten years can last for a further ten years if maintained properly. It can be a good treat for the buyers as well who are interested in buying a second-hand quad.

What is the average mileage of an ATV or Quad bike in a year?

It is a common rule that the more you ride your ATV, the more maintenance is required to increase its life. Different people ride ATVs in different capacities depending upon their needs. For example, if a person rides an ATV on average about 20 miles in a week, then it makes almost 1040 miles in a year.

For ATV fanatics, this annual number of miles may be greater. If it is 200 hours of motocross racing or GNCC racing, then it will have more wear and tear as compared to the 200 hours of normal racing.

Obviously, if an ATV covers more miles, then its wear and tear will also increase, and more maintenance is needed to keep it running smoothly.

What is the life expectancy of an ATV?

As discussed earlier, if good care of an ATV is done, then it can go more than 10,000 miles. A lot of other factors are also there that can predict the lifespan of an ATV.


If you own a renowned brand of an ATV, it can last for years. For example, Polaris and Honda hold the best reputation in ATVs because of their products are super reliable.


When we talk about the lifespan of an ATV, merely counting the number of miles and hours it has covered is not important. The most important thing is how the ATV is ridden and how this distance is covered.

One method to check this is to jack up the ATV and focus on the bearings, go for any tears or rips in the CV boots.

The function of the CV boots is to retain the grease inside the CV axles. It also protects the axle. Once if the CV boot gets ripped, then your CV joints can get exposed and begin rusting. On examining the CV boots, if big rips are seen, then it shows that the ATV had not been maintained properly, leading to its decreased lifespan.


The exterior body of an ATV is made up of plastic. The condition of the plastic can easily determine how the ATV has been kept. For this purpose, remove the outer plastic body parts and check the dents and cracks in the frame. If the frame is weak, then obviously, the lifespan of ATV is also less. The weak frame also indicates if the ATV has encountered rollovers in its life.


Most of the ATV owners do not have any idea how detrimental mud and dirt could be. When stuck on the exposed parts of an ATV, mud absorbs moisture. This moisture provides a favorable condition for rusting. This rust, in return, weakens the ATV. The three necessary things for rust to develop are iron, water, and oxygen.

Mud on the body of the ATV can also damage the paint. The paint can get removed easily by the mud, and this causes rust to form. Don’t worry; this all happens if mud is left on the body for a long period of time. Dried mud is abrasive in nature.

It can also cause damage to the mobile parts of the ATV like joints and the bearings. It can also damage the brakes. In short, after a dirty muddy ride, clean your ATV thoroughly as a clean ATV has more life than a dirty one.

ATV/Quad Bike tires

Tough and a good set of tires can give you about 8000 miles before they need a replacement. The replacement of tires depends upon the surface where an ATV is ridden. If an ATV is run on sand and dirt roads, then obviously that will last longer as compared to when run on the sharp and rocky roads.

Therefore before planning to buy a new quad, it is necessary to decide the surface on which your quad would be ridden. The sand tires are meant to drive in sand, and mud tires are designed for mud. A well maintained ATV has a good grip on the tires on all the terrains.

How long do ATV engines last?

Today, if the ATVs are not regularly maintained and driven hard, then obviously, they may end up very early. ATVs, which were manufactured in the 1980s by Honda and Suzuki, are still in good condition because they have been well maintained and oiled or greased regularly.

Suzuki and Honda build the best engines. These are reliable, and when maintained regularly, they make it to their last. Some quads like-King quads 300 and Suzuki 450 are still the forerunners due to the power of the engine and the thrill they provide while riding. Other reliable brands of quads are Yamaha Grizzly 700, Honda Rincon, or Yamaha Rhino.

Honda foreman is also a great and long-lasting bike. When oiled and greased properly, it works well over 10,000 miles. Its spare parts like Wheel bearings, front ball joints, and swingarm bearings are important and should be inspected from time to time and replaced when necessary. These parts aren’t expensive and easy to replace.

In the ATV sector, the immense growth of a number of Chinese manufacturers has been seen. These manufacturers make the ATVs at a lower price as compared to the other leading brands.

Some of these ATVs can not be trusted as they have built the machine with cheaper parts, and sometimes it may even become difficult to find these spare parts when needed. The average life of these ATVs is not more than 6 to 7 years.

How to increase the life of an ATV?

For the increased lifespan of an ATV, its proper and regular maintenance is necessary. By opting for following instructions for the maintenance, the lifespan of an ATV can be increased. Below mentioned are some tips which can be used as a guide or a maintenance checklist. Some of these can be checked after every 100 miles, while the others are recommended to be checked before every ride.

  1. Follow the break-in procedure
  2. Condensation check
  3. Change/check oil
  4. Routine Wash
  5. Clean Air Filter
  6. Spark plugs
  7. Check the belt
  8. Treat the gas with a stabilizer product
  9. Maintain the tire pressure
  10. Coolant levels
  11. Boots, bellows and bolts
  12. Brake fluids
  13. Brake pads

1# Follow the break-in procedure.

When a quad is manufactured and comes off the manufacturer’s assembly line, they are not given enough time to get lubricated or loosen up all the parts. After that, they are loaded in the delivery trucks and still have to travel hundreds of miles to reach the sales floor.

When riding for the very first time, avoid the half throttle for an extended period of time. The throttle speed should be varied regularly. Avoid operating the vehicle at just one throttle position. For an extended period of time, the three quarter throttle position should be avoided during the time period of ten to twenty-hour.

Now the ATV had been fully broken into, and the riding period of twenty hours had passed, the first oil change of the ATV should be performed to experience the joyful ATV ride.

2# Condensation check

If the oil is not warmed up properly on starting up the engine, then condensation may build up and become visible on the dipstick. The other sign of developing condensation is that when the white milky substance starts dripping from the dipstick when it is removed.

The mixing up of water and oil is not a good thing, so whenever it happens, change the oil and ride the vehicle for a long period of time so that oil can get heated significantly.

3# Change/check the oil.

Oil should be changed regularly; otherwise, the ATV will not run properly. The quality of the oil used for an ATV has an important role to play in the performance and the lifespan of an engine. Make sure to use the right type of oil meant for an ATV or that recommended by the manufacturer according to the type of your ATV.

Oil changing in a quad should be frequently done as it helps the engine to get rid of the residues, impurities, and deposits that get formed naturally with time.

Regularly checking the oil also ensures that there is enough oil in the engine. When the level of oil is low, it should be refilled, as it prevents the engine from overheating and eventually engine failure. To keep the ATV running long and strong, always follow the engine recommended schedule recommended by the manufacturer.

4# Routine wash

A muddy and adventurous ride on an ATV has always been a pleasure. It is recommended to make your ATV neat and clean as it was before after the long muddy ride. Moisture and dirt can get easily trapped if there is not a thick layer of paint or any anti-corrosive agent covering the ATV. This moisture can cause oxidation or accelerate the process of oxidation, leading to the rusting of the ATV body.

In addition to that, mud and dirt can also penetrate the air filter, thus affecting the circulation of air, and the consumption of fuel is also increased. This affects the overall vehicle performance. In order to prevent it, a good wash of the four-wheeler is advised.

5# Clean air filter

A healthy and clean air filter allows the free circulation of oxygen. This is important for the life of the engine of your ATV. a dirty and water-soaked air filter affects the function of the engine.

Engines work in a similar way. They just need a combination of three things to work properly. They include fuel, air, and spark. When the air filter gets blocked, the engine becomes deprived of oxygen. This affects the performance of the engine. If this blockage becomes severe, then the engine may shut down. Do not forget to check the status of your air filter after each ride. If the air filter is dirty with mud, then it is obvious to change the dirty air filter with a clean one. Air filters should also be cleaned regularly as bugs and insects may hide in there.

6# Spark plugs

Spark plugs are also an essential component that makes an engine work as it creates the spark to ignite the engine.

Faulty spark plugs can create a misfire in the engine leading to increased emissions and decreased power. This can cause a slow start of the vehicle or a rough ride. So these old and faulty spark plugs should be replaced immediately with the new ones.

7# Check the belt

Check the transmission belts periodically. Due to the wear and tear, the CV belts can become worn out or stretched. When dirt, mud, or any other material becomes stuck in the grooves of the belt, more heat gets produced, which causes tears in the belt. If the belt gets torn out, then the quad will not move. The tearing of the belt does not occur all at once. It progresses slowly, and a decline in the performance of the quad is seen, or you may smell the burning of rubber, then it’s the time to shut the quad and check the belts immediately. The maintenance of the transmission belts should be done as per the user’s manual.

8# Treat the gas with a stabilizer product.

Similar to gasoline, engine oil can also break down after a certain time. It gets unstabilized and decomposes with time. Nowadays, it can degrade quickly in as early as 45 days. When gas is broken down, sediment is left behind that gets deposited and clog the fuel lines ultimately. Therefore it is necessary to get the fuel treated whether you are running your quad or not.

A stabilizer is used to treat the fuel and fuel lines. This stabilizer helps to prevent the decomposition of gas and to get it deposited along the fuel lines. This stabilizer is quite cheap in price and is easy to use as well. All you have to do is simply put the stabilizer in the gas tank and run the engine for a few minutes so that it can get mixed up in the fuel lines.

9# Maintain the tire pressure

Tires are the most important for any vehicle. For a smooth ride, tires should be inspected regularly. On smooth terrains like mud and sand, tires do not tear out quickly as compared to when run on rough and bumpy tracks. Before every ride, it is necessary to check the pressure of the tires. If the pressure is low, then it is not recommended to ride. It will not only pull the steering wheel in a direction, but the chances of meeting with an accident are greatly increased. Moreover, the tire rim can get damaged too due to low pressure in the tires.

Pressure in the tires of a quad can be checked very easily. A tube with a cap would be sticking out of the wheel, simply remove its cap and measure the pressure of air using a tire pressure gauge. The value of the pressure should lie within the range as recommended by the manufacturer.

10# Coolant levels

Prevention of the overheating of the engine is extremely important. This is done through the cooling system of the quad by using the coolant. Like all the other important fluids, the coolant of the quad should also be checked regularly. A coolant is green/blue in color and comes in a small plastic bottle. You have to make sure that the levels of coolant are fine and the hoses that lead to the radiator are in place. Ideally, the coolant should be free of debris and dirt. It should not get mixed with other fluids; this is indicated by the change in its color.

11# Boots, bellows, and bolts

After the strenuous use of the quad, the boots and the bellows should get checked periodically.

These parts lie closer to wheels with a rubber vent like shape. They should be inspected for tears regularly. If a tear is seen, then the boot should be replaced immediately with a new one.

The driveshaft is surrounded by this protective boot, and it also protects the axle’s CV joint from water, dirt, and other contaminants. CV joints are the most important part as power from the engine is transmitted to the wheels through them. While inspecting the joints, also check if the pivot points and the bearings need to be greased or not.

12# Brake fluids

Brake fluid is used in the clutch and brake systems of your ATV. This fluid efficiently works at very high ranges of pressure and temperature. If this fluid is not there, then the quad would be unable to stop even if the brake lever is pushed.

 The drawback of this brake fluid is that it can absorb moisture from the air. Due to which the brake fluid gets degraded, and brakes do not work properly. Therefore it is recommended to drain and replace the brake fluid annually. For a particular model of the quad, consult the user’s manual on how frequently the brake oil should be changed.

13# Brake pads

When dealing with a quad, it is very important to know well about the function and working of the brake pads. When the brake pads become faulty, a screeching noise similar to the noise of nails on the chalkboard is heard. When it occurs, it indicates that it is time to replace the brake pads. If the pads are new and the same sound is heard, then it means that either the pads are of the wrong type or they have not been installed properly.

So it is very important to go for the right type of pads as driving a quad with the wrong pad poses the same risk as driving without brake pads. The thickness of the brake pads can also be an indicator if they need a replacement. The replacement of the brake pads also depends upon the frequency of riding an ATV and how hard you stop after riding.

So by adopting all these measures and maintaining the ATV regularly and properly, its lifespan can be greatly increased. Moreover, a well maintained ATV also gives you a good price if sold in the second-hand market.

Things that can ruin your ATV/Quad bike

So far, we have discussed that by treating an ATV like a child, means caring for it, nurturing it, giving attention to its needs, and loving it; its lifespan can greatly increase. If these rules are not followed, then a quad can easily get ruined. Some of the ways to ruin a quad are discussed underneath.

  1. Never clean the air filter
  2. Ride with a clogged radiator
  3. Let the fuel go bad
  4. Never change the oil
  5. Never tighten the bolts
  6. Never grease it
  7. Submerge it in water
  8. Crash it
  9. Never wash it
How to Easily Bleed ATV Brakes | Scooter's Powersports

1# Never clean the air filter.

In order to prevent damage to your ATV, its air filter needs to be checked and cleaned regularly. With the passage of time, the engine can get worn out by sucking in some dirty particles. These particles can cause severe damage. In addition to the fuel, an engine also needs clean air to work properly. When the air filter is dirty, the dirt can be sucked up in the engine; this results in internal damage and loss of the horsepower of the engine. The air filter should be cleaned thoroughly after a dirty ride, even if it needs to be changed twice a day. The price of the air filter is very low as compared to the whole engine, and it hardly takes 10 minutes to clear it. In order to prevent the quad from ruining, it’s better to replace the air filter in time.

2# Ride with a clogged radiator

Mud, dirt, and sand can clog the radiator. This can cause the overheating of the engine. While washing an ATV, a pressure washer is recommended to ensure the smooth flow of water through the radiator without any splashing back.

3# Let the fuel go bad

Over time, the fuel gets broken down, causing the carburetor and the fuel line to get clogged. If an ATV is not ridden and kept in winters, then when riding, it is important to completely drain the gas tank, or the use of a fuel additive is recommended.

4# Never change the oil.

Similar to the air filter, the debris, water, metal scraps, or dirt also gets collected in the oil. For a seasonal rider, the changing of oil is recommended at the end of the season. If riding is done frequently, then obviously, the oil should be replaced more often to keep the engine working.

5# Never tighten the bolts.

Bolds should be checked and tightened regularly; if not, then on riding your four-wheeler would end up in a three-wheeler ride. These bolts include pivot bolts, lug nuts, wheel hubs, axle nuts, sprocket bolts, and skid plate bolts. Check them at intervals for a smooth ride.

6# Never grease it

The pivot bolt, steering stem bushing, carrier bearings, a-arm bushings/bearings, and front hub bearings should be checked and greased regularly to keep your machine running.

7# Submerge it in water

Water can reduce the lifespan of the ATV. If accidentally your ATV gets too wet and water enters the engine, oil, and the gas, then shift the ATV to dry land and do not restart the vehicle. Water is drained out of the exhaust pipe, and the spark plug is pulled to blow the water out of the cylinder. After that, clean the air boot, oil is changed, air filter and the carburetor are cleaned out.

8# Crash it

It is the single best way to ruin your ATV. Climbing on a steep hill, flipping your machine over, or hitting with a solid object are all the ways that can reduce the lifespan of an ATV. When an ATV gets crashed, it is recommended to check for the clutch, brake, throttle, and shifter that all are working or not.

9# Never wash it

If, after a dirty and muddy ride, you do not clean up your ATV, then it can get ruined easily. Mud can trap moisture, and this can lead to rusting and corrosion of the ATV, so washing, cleaning, and drying is a must after every dirty ride.

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