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Looking for a UTV? Here are Some Buying Tips

Mitch Avatar By: Mitch | Last updated March 30, 2023

White UTV parked outside on a trail


Picture this! It’s a beautiful day outside, and the only thing you want to do is spend your time riding on something with four wheels while enjoying the wind in your hair. If you’ve got the time and space to enjoy riding around the land, it’s understandable that you want to begin looking for a UTV to buy.

However, before you hand over the money, it’s crucial that you take your time to ensure you find a UTV that fits your needs and wants you to have. If you didn’t know, you might also find UTVs under the term side-by-side, which makes sense, and traditionally they are used for a particular purpose, more so recreational activities.

Get ready to take on the mountains and valleys in your area after you find a UTV that will fulfill all your desires.

black and red UTV parked outside

Don’t Forget the Test Ride

black and white picture of utv parked outside

We’re all guilty of seeing a deal we don’t want to miss out on. But, even in the most comprehensive UTV guides, one thing that’s not left out is the fact that you need to take the UTV for a test ride. You don’t want to run the risk of buying a UTV before you see it, but you have paid the money to call it yours.

A test ride will let you know a series of things, including how the UTV runs and if any issues need to be addressed before you take the UTV home. If you’re still unsure of the things to look into when enjoying your test ride, there is a checklist you can follow.

The first thing to review is the stopping mechanism used by the UTV. Brakes are important because you want to remain safe when you’re riding it, and not having brakes would be the opposite of something you should be riding.

If the brakes aren’t firm, you will need to have it looked at because these parts are worn down, which can make stopping harder. Another thing to keep an eye out for is if there’s any smoke coming from the engine.

If you notice there is smoke, the engine is misfiring, or the exhaust isn’t working as it should be. Lastly, check the slippage of the CVT belt. The belt shouldn’t slip whatsoever, but if it is, you’re going to need to have that belt replaced.

Sometimes it can be hard to determine if the CTV belt is intact, but a dead giveaway is that if you’re trying to change gears, your clutch may not function the way it should. Of course, there are other things to make a note of during your test ride, but these are a few things to be conscious of.

highway at sunrise with grass along the sides

Don’t Be Fooled By the Salesman

When you’re working with an independent seller, you’ve got to understand that their job is to make a sale by any means. This means they might overlook some cons of buying a UTV from them and do whatever it takes to sell the product.

It’s your job as the buyer to be diligent and aware of when a salesman is trying to pull a wool over your eyes. For instance, if the salesperson talks a lot and provides you with a lot of information that doesn’t answer any of your questions, that is a glaring red flag. 

It’s a red flag that should make you not conduct further business with the salesperson. When they’re talking over you or overwhelming you with information, pay attention to how it makes you feel.

When you begin to feel uneasy, this should be a sign to trust your gut and continue your search for a UTV from a reputable seller. Another question you should ask is the seller’s reason for selling the UTV in the first place. 

If the seller isn’t forthcoming, they won’t want to tell you the truth about why they’re selling it. In most cases, they’re going to do their best to keep you in the dark about why they are selling it, which means avoiding questions and trying to out-talk you again.

Look At The Entire Frame

The frame is part of the UTV that will keep you safe, which means you need to look it over before you decide if you will buy it or not. When you’re looking at the appearance of the UTV, review things like the:

  • Frame
  • Tire
  • Gas tank

If you notice something that looks unusual, you will need to speak to the seller before you remove the UTV from their property or pay them. Unless specified in the seller’s description of the UTV, none of these areas should have any problems that would make you second guess if you want to buy it.

Even if you feel like you’re nitpicking, you have the right to ask all the questions you have about the UTV. This is something you’ll be using for enjoyment purposes, and if it’s not in shape to be used properly, it’s not something you’ll want to invest money in.

Not to mention if there’s something wrong with the frame of the UTV, it might allude to other problems that the equipment has. The last thing you want is to be using the UTV and find out the engine doesn’t run properly or have a tire pop.

When things like this happen, you could end up stranded and have to figure out how to get the UTV back to your home to see if the issue can be prepared.

Buying a UTV

making a deal with a UTV salesman

Before you decide to buy a UTV, there are several things you’ve got to consider. Is the salesperson shady or upfront about the reasons they’re selling it? Or are the problems with the UTV frame that will need to be fixed?

Do your due diligence and be careful before deciding when to buy a UTV.