There’s nothing quite like the adventure of a side x side as you cruise down dirt roads, around a racetrack or around your neighborhood. A side by side offers years of unforgettable adventures, and a great deal can be hard to pass by. Before you purchase a UTV, whether from a dealer or a private individual, use these tips to ensure you get a reliable vehicle at a good price.
Ride Before You Buy Your Side x Side
Just like purchasing a truck or RV, it’s important to test drive your UTV before you buy. Older side by sides can still be valuable and a great investment, but be sure you know the condition of its engine and other components. Here are some basic areas to test on your first drive before you make an offer:
- Make sure the engine starts easily
- Look for excessive smoke from the exhaust
- Watch for a slipping CVT belt
- Check out the speed and stopping power of your new ride
- Take a few corners to see how it handles.
Some performance issues will be very obvious during a test drive, while others are far more subtle. Take your time and learn how your UTV handles in different speeds, how it accelerates and how easily you can brake at various speeds. Your test drive is your main opportunity to discover any performance issues before purchasing your UTV.
Whether you’re working with a private owner or a major dealer, ask questions about the specific UTV you’re considering purchasing. A private owner will have information about your UTV’s history, while a dealer should know more about that particular make and model of vehicle.
Ask about any performance issues, history of use and history of repairs. This information will help you determine whether the UTV is in good working order and whether it’s worth the asking price. If the previous owner or dealer is unwilling to provide information about the UTV, it may be a sign that there’s a significant issue they are attempting to hide.
Check the Oil, Coolant and Gas
Go through your maintenance inspection list before purchasing a UTV. If the oil looks dark, the gas tank is low or the coolant is oddly colored, these could all be signs of improper maintenance and major engine issues. Look for signs of repairs, and find out how often the oil will need to be changed once you make the purchase. An engine that rapidly burns through oil may have another issue that could affect its performance.
The oil filter should be reasonably clean, and no liquid should have an odd odor. Rancid gasoline, heavily diluted coolant or oil with metal contaminants are all major warning signs. Look for another UTV or have a qualified mechanic inspect the engine before purchasing a UTV with these issues.
Inspect the Axles and CV Boots
After these basic maintenance areas, it’s time to slide under your UTV and inspect its undercarriage. Axles, CV boots and the suspension system are all areas that need to be in prime condition.
Popular UTV models, like the RZR, commonly have lift kits, new suspensions and other aftermarket accessories installed. Check to see if they appear to be professionally installed or a DIY job. A DIY aftermarket installation may create issues down the road with other major components.
Research the Make and Model
What do you know about this particular UTV? While many side by sides offer similar functionality, some particular models are worth far more than others. Some years of particular makes and models of UTV may also be subject to a recall due to defective parts. Research the brands and models that fit your budget and offer the performance specifications you need for your particular style of adventure.
Invest in the Right Insurance Coverage for your side x side
Insurance is a safety net to protect your major investments. Whether you’ve found an amazing deal on an affordable UTV or you’re investing in the latest model from a leading brand, protect your investment with reliable UTV insurance. Your side by side is a major investment, so it’s essential to protect it from accidental damage. Request a quote today to discover how you can find affordable insurance options and generous coverage for your UTV. Work with RVInsurances.com to find to find great rates for your side by side, RV and other recreational vehicles.