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How to Prepare Your Snowmobile for the Winter Season

Read up on proper snowmobile care before you hit the trails with DSG Outerwear! We'll help guide you through the steps to get your snowmobile prepped.

Author: Lauren Fernandez


Finally, after spending the better part of the year in the garage, your snowmobile will be seeing some action again with the arrival of winter.

While most everyone else will likely stay indoors for the entire season with the heater running full blast, you will be spending plenty of time speeding through frozen lakes and snow-covered trails that take you to places you never would be able to reach without your snowmobile!

However, before you hop onto your trusty motor sled and speed away, you have to make sure that it’s in good condition. After all, it hasn’t been used in months. You have to make doubly sure that everything, from its maintenance-free battery to its track, is working just fine. Here are some snowmobile care tips that will help you prepare your snowmobile for the winter.

Check for mice.

Good for you if your snowmobile was stored in an area where mice don’t thrive. If that isn’t the case, then always check your snowmobile for mouse families that might have taken up residence in its intake and exhaust systems. Make sure that it has no squatters or nesting materials that could mess things up once you start your snowmobile.

While you’re at it, do a thorough visual inspection of your snowmobile. See to it that there are no loose parts, and check for wear and tear on belts, idler wheels, and other areas that typically suffer them. Refer to the manual for the points that require lubrication, and apply the right amount of grease on them.

Check the battery.

When you turn the ignition, and your engine comes to life, then your snowmobile’s battery is doing fine. If it doesn’t, it’s possible that the months-long storage caused it to discharge. So perform troubleshooting on your battery and see if it can still be saved. If not, replace it with a new one that is compatible with your sled.

Inspect the fluids.

Add fresh coolant to your snowmobile. Flush your brake fluid as well and replace it, since it absorbs water over time. To prevent accelerated wear on your snowmobile’s chaincase, drain its oil and replace it with a high-quality synthetic lubricant.

You should also drain the tank since the gas left inside it may have gone bad, especially if you didn’t add fuel stabilizer when you put it in hibernation months ago. So check the tank, smell the gas, and if there’s any indication that it has gone bad, drain your tank completely and replace it with high-quality gas that goes with your snowmobile’s specific requirements.

Take a closer look at your skis.

The skis on your snowmobile needs to be in perfect working condition, because if it isn’t, your sled won’t be taking you anywhere. Worse, skis with problems pose a danger to you and your passengers. So always check your skis before going on a ride. If your snowmobile has plastic skis, check for gouges or cuts in it. For steel skis, see if it has holes. Bent runners could also be a problem, so take a closer look at them too. If you find any of these issues, it would be best to take them to a shop for repairs.

Check all the lights.

Visibility can be a problem when conditions are snowy, and that’s why you need to make sure your snowmobile’s lights are functioning properly. Check the headlights, brake lights, and running lights and see if they’re working well enough to help you spot obstacles, see the trail clearly, and be seen by other snowmobile riders even when visibility is poor.

Inspect the track.

Over time, your snowmobile track will suffer some wear, which could cause some performance and safety issues. So before speeding off, check your track for worn or broken lugs, dry rotting, and other signs of wear, and see if it needs to be replaced.

Clean the carburetors.

When you’re taking your snowmobile out of storage, check the carburetors if they need cleaning. You wouldn’t want to operate a snowmobile with a dirty carburetor because it can cause engine failure, which could lead to a whole host of problems for you. If it’s all gunked up, you may have to take it out for a thorough cleaning before you can use your sled.

Perform a crack inspection.

The fan, oil cables, water pump belt, and throttle of your snowmobile are prone to cracking over time, so check these parts for cracks before taking out your snowmobile for a ride.

Clean your snowmobile.

Your snowmobile was in storage for months, and it has likely accumulated its share of dust, dirt, and debris over that time. So get a hose and clean the whole thing. You can even take it to the local car wash for a deeper and more thorough cleaning.

Once you’ve done all of the above, your snowmobile will finally be ready for action for the season! 

Author bio:

Lauren Fernandez is the Content Marketing Strategist for Renegade Battery, a power sport batteries manufacturer based in Goodyear, Arizona that supplies batteries for motorcycles, ATVs, snowmobiles & jet skis all over the US. When not writing, she makes use of her spare time doing trail runs and reading books.

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