How To Protect Your Atv With Locks And Insurance
- Updated: 2023-08-05
A new set of ATV speakers is a really cool addition to your favorite four-wheeled vehicle but getting a hefty lock and insurance may also be very good for protecting it against any unfortunate incidents. Knowing how to avoid your ATV getting stolen is something important for every owner considering the value of these machines.
It seems that ATVs are a prime target for thieves because of the relative ease of use and their general lack of safety systems. People tend to usually leave them alone with nobody watching and some riders even leave their keys on the quad without thinking twice about it. This is especially true considering that most ATV owners are not off-road enthusiasts but farmers.
You hardly ever want anything stolen from you, but ATVs seem to always be the target of all kinds of criminals. Since you have worked long and hard to get one of those in your possession, it’s always a good idea to know a few simple steps that you can take to protect your investment.
Having insurance on something is the best way to keep it safe. If your ATV is stolen, broken or even wrecked, it will pay you cash in return so you can get another one. In case there’s a third party involved in the incident, insurance can protect you and your family’s assets from liability in case it is deemed to be your fault.
While there are all kinds of insurers out there, most major auto insurance companies will typically have some kind of policies specifically designed for ATVs.
For example, Geico recognized the growing need to cater to people who own or use all-terrain vehicles and now has a complete power-sports division that can pretty much insure anything from ATVs to dirt bikes, Jet Skis, and even snowmobiles.
Be careful though, as your homeowner’s policy may not cover your ATV if you happen to ride off your property or even if you trailer it to another location. Moreover, if you want to use your vehicle in a state-owned or public park, keep in mind that your insurance may be demanded if somebody were to check on you.
Having insurance also works wonders for your peace of mind, since you don’t have to stress yourself out all the time. Sure, nobody wants to get their vehicle stolen, but if it happens you’ll at least know you won’t have to start from scratch.
Talk to your insurance broker about the best way to protect your ATV. While you may be lucky and have it covered under the home insurance policy, making a claim can increase your premiums and the amount of money you get back may not even come close to what you need to replace your machine.
You should always lock up your ATVs when you’re not using them and hide the keys somewhere safe like a lockbox or something of the sort. It’s also a good idea to use a chain with a padlock but you can also get a lock for the trailer hitch and the receiver hitch to make it very difficult to get it unhooked and attached to another vehicle.
Again, there are companies that recognized the need for this and developed a series of products that would rather prevent your ATV from being stolen altogether. The Python lock is a unique, expandable cable lock that will basically cover as much distance as you need it to seeing how it is available in 6,12 or 30-foot lengths.
The 3/8-inch coated cable will slide through the lock mechanism and prevent it from moving, acting as a great deterrent to criminals. Another benefit is that the 30-foot version is long enough to even reach quads sitting on your trailer.
For those more technologically-savvy, there is also the option of using a GPS tracker to know where your vehicle is at all times. This can help the police locate the stolen ATV and bring the thieves to justice. Vigilance is always the best prevention so be on the lookout for suspicious people and don’t leave your vehicle in dark or abandoned places.
Having talked about all the external measures you can take to prevent your ATV from being stolen, let’s take a look at some of the more ‘’mechanical’’ things you can do to achieve the same goal. Rest assured, they are not very hard to undertake and some of them might even save you time, money, and a brand-new ATV.
Remove valve stems
Since thieves are opportunists, they will try to go for the easiest way to steal your possessions. In the case of ATVs, the simplest way to illegally borrow it is to simply roll it away. To prevent that from happening, you should think about removing the valve stems from two tires before you prepare your transportation for storage.
Quite logically, this will make the tire go flat and provide the thieves with a much greater challenge if they hope to simply move it away. Installing the stem valves again is not too hard or too costly even if you have to hire someone, and it’s definitely a lot cheaper than having to replace an entire ATV.
Padlock your brakes
If you have a machine which has drilled brake rotors, remember that you can buy small padlocks that you can slip into the locking shaft through one of the holes in the rotor. This way, you can still prevent the ATV from being rolled away and it takes less of a toll on your tires.
Stop the charge
Mostly any all-terrain vehicle on the trails these days has an electric starter. You can simply remove the fuse to the key switch, starter, or fuel pump to slow any would-be thieves down and protect your property.
The most important thing is to always lock your ATV up in some form or fashion before parking it overnight. When you are camping, chain it to a tree or even your camper. It’s best if you get a good quality chain and lock that cannot be drilled out or cut open so the only option for a criminal would be to cut into your vehicle which certainly would make a lot of noise.
Furthermore, ensure that when using the chain or the cable it actually goes through the frame, as simply locking the ATV wheel to a stationary object will not be enough to get the job done in most cases.
If you’re keeping the machine in a trailer, it’s best to also invest in a lock for that as well. If you can’t get a trailer wheel lock or an alarm system, at least try to ensure every time that you leave it locked and hooked up to your ATV.
Another neat trick is to lock your ignition and remove the key because most of the vehicle thefts happen when the ignition is indeed shut off, but not locked. Something that goes well with this is to add an audible alarm to your bike, since the sound may even scare away any would-be burglars and thieves.
When you are spending a night at a hotel, try to locate an outdoor security camera and park your vehicle in that camera’s view for extra protection. If you are unable to do this, your best bet is to park it as close to your room as possible. This can even be true for your home since most thieves tend to check out their target for months before trying to steal it.