Riding ATVs off-road is a whole lot of fun, especially if you are riding with a group of friends who are as excited about exploring the unbeaten path as you are. On the downside of things, many things can go wrong when riding on rough terrain. ATV tires get ripped or punctured on the usual. You will have to get used to this but don’t worry because I will show you that there’s a quick way to patch ATV tires.
ATV tires can be patched in less than five minutes. All you need is a regular car tire patch and you will be able to patch the hole right away. Finding the leak is as simple as listening for the escaping air or using soapy water to find the bubbles. Without any further ado, here is a step-by-step guide:
#1 Remove the wheel from the ATV;
#2 Find the puncture and mark it with a marker;
#3 Clean the marked area;
#4 Add rubber cement to the area and wait for 2-3 minutes;
#5 Apply the patch over the rubber cement;
#6 Mount the wheel back once the cement is dry.
Sidenote: If the puncture on the flat ATV tire is too big for the patch, you will need to use a tire plug kit instead.
Learning how to patch ATV tires is an essential skill everyone who enjoys riding off-road should know. You never know when you will get a flat tire in the wild outdoors, and it’s best to handle it yourself than to call for help. Keep reading because I will share additional tips for fixing bad punctures on ATV tires, including a leaky seal!
How to Patch ATV Tires – A Beginner’s DIY Guide
Have you ever patched a regular car tire? If yes, then you should be pleased to know that the process is similar. Depending on the severity of the tire, you won’t need more than 5 minutes to get the job done. If you are reading this article from your smartphone on the side of the road, you don’t have anything to worry about.
I will show you how to remove the flat ATV tire, find the leak, and patch it ASAP. In case you have an easier time learning from video guides, you can check out this video from Big Boys Toys.
#1 Remove the Wheel
The first step is to remove the wheel from the ATV. This step is essential because it makes it easier to find the punctured spot and fix it the tire. Follow the steps below to remove your wheel:
- Position the ATV on a flat surface and put it in “Park” or engage the parking break so that it doesn’t roll;
- Loosen the lug nuts on the wheel you want to remove;
- Lift the four-wheeler with a jack;
- Now, remove the lug nuts completely and slid the wheel of the hub.
One of the most common reasons why ATV tires get punctured is because they don’t have the right pressure. I recommend checking out my post where I present the best ATV tire pressure so that you know the correct PSI values for your ATV make and model.
#2 Find the Puncture and Mark It
Now that the wheel is off, you need to find the puncture on the tire. The best and fastest way to do this is to inflate the tire and listen for any air escaping. If it’s difficult to determine where the air is passing through, you can use a spray bottle filled with soapy water to spray all over the tire. Doing this will make it easier to spot the puncture because the soap will create bubbles. After finding the spot, you should use a marker to mark it.
#3 Clean the Marked area
It’s best to clean the marked spot for the patch. You can use a tire scuffer if you have one around. The reason why you need to do this is that you don’t want the place around the puncture to have any excess rubber or dirt that will prevent the rubber cement from sticking.
#4 Add Rubber Cement
Once the area is cleaned and prepared, you can go ahead and add the rubber cement. Make sure that you don’t use your hand for this and instead use a stick or any other item. Take it from me. Rubber cement is really hard to take off the skin once it dries off. Nonetheless, apply the rubber cement and wait for 2-3 minutes so that it dries off.
#5 Apply the Patch
Apply the patch over the rubber cement that has dried off. It’s very important to press the patch tightly around the edges so it doesn’t have any air bubbles.
#6 Mount the Wheel Back On
If the rubber cement is dry and the patch has successfully stuck on the surface, then you are good to go. You can mount the wheel back on and begin riding the ATV like it never had a flat tire.
Tools You Need:
- Rubber cement;
- Tire patch.
Expert Tips (Don’t Learn Them the Hard Way)
I’ve had my fair share of flat tires when riding ATVs. This is why I had the chance to learn a bunch of helpful tips that make patching ATV tires easier. Check them out below:
- Wear gloves;
- If the puncture is too close to the sidewall, it’s often better to replace the tire than to patch it and have it lose air;
- Try to avoid riding for long distances or at fast speeds on a patched tire so that you avoid getting it punctured again.
- Don’t use a car tire on ATV. This is not a good idea.
As you can see in the step-by-step guide I presented today, anyone can patch an ATV tire like a pro. If you love riding your four-wheeler in the wild outdoors, it’s always a good idea to carry all the tools you need to patch a tire. You never know when a tire gets punctured, and it’s best to be prepared. The last thing I want to share with you is always to make safety the highest priority. What I mean by this is that you should only ride on a patched ATV tire until you can get home and replace it with a new one.