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  • Writer's pictureBeckside Machinery

How to maintain your side-by-side or Quadbike

Maintaining your quad bike or side-by-side on a regular basis will help you get the most out of it. Check out the following article to learn how to choose the right oil, coolant, and other essential tips to follow the right maintenance schedule for your quad...


Let's start with engine oil. There are high temperatures and high RPMs involved in the oil that lubricates your side-by-side (SXS) or quad bike engine when it runs under intense use for a long period of time. It is for this reason that quad and SXS-specific engine oil contains special additives that will dissipate heat and maintain consistency over longer periods of use than standard vehicle oil.

There is no doubt that oil is necessary in order to allow the moving parts of an engine to work correctly, and when you consider the extra work and wide variety of conditions that SXS/ATV oil is subjected to, making sure that you maintain its oil level and change it consistently is imperative. It is very important that you check the level of your engine oil before every ride or long day out on the fields and top it up if needed. It is important to investigate and mitigate any leaks in the system, especially if the oil levels are consistently dropping. If the oil level rises, on the other hand, it may indicate the accumulation of contaminants in the oil sump or crankcase, which should also be attended to as soon as possible.

Contaminants such as combustion-byproducts, dirt, and other substances contribute to the need for regular oil changes. Depending on your owner's manual, you should check your recommended schedule every six months, every 100 driving hours, or 1000 miles, every time you use your Polaris quad or SxS. The owner's manual for your particular machine will also indicate how much oil it can hold. During the break-in period of a new engine, the oil level should also be monitored to determine when oil needs to be changed.

It should be noted that each Polaris off-road vehicle has its own type of engine oil that is listed in the owner's manual, and which can be purchased from Polaris dealers in the UK.


Without the proper high-quality oil filters, the best premium oils developed for side-by-sides and quadbikes for sale will do little to no good. A new filter should be changed every time the oil is changed, as the oil should be changed on a regular basis as well.


Refer to your quadbike or SXS owner's manual for information on selecting the correct lubricant for your quadbikes or SXS transmission. A quick inspection of the transmission fluid level and appearance before each ride is always a good idea. In general, the transmission fluid should be clear to slightly cloudy; cloudy or dark transmission fluid implies contamination, possibly metal flakes from normal clutch/transmission wear, which over time can cause significant damage, so the transmission fluid should be changed out. You should typically change the transmission fluid in your quad or SxS after 100 hours (or after 1,000 miles, or after a year, whichever comes first).


It is recommended that you use one of the Demand Drive fluids recommended for the POLARIS ATVs and side-by-sides to keep the front gearcase lubricated. Due to the high torque and heavy loads encountered by these machines, specialized front drive oil is required to protect the drives. It is generally recommended to change this lubricant at the same time as the transmission oil: every 100 hours, every 12 months, or every 1,000 miles. I want to emphasize the importance of periodically checking the level and examining the appearance of the oil in the front gearcase in order to detect any leaks or premature contaminations.


It turns out that the coolant in your four-wheeler actually serves a number of functions more than just keeping the engine cool: it also helps to lubricate some of its internal parts.

The intensity of conditions and loads that SXS/quad engines operate under has already been described in the section regarding oil, thus it is crucial to ensure that the recommended coolant level is adequately maintained for the intended operation. Before each and every ride, be sure to check the level of the overflow bottle and add coolant if necessary. There is a chance of a leak somewhere in the system if the coolant in the overflow reservoir is completely dry. If this is the case, the overflow reservoir should be checked for liquid levels. Make sure to periodically check the radiator cap to make sure it is in good condition as well. In the event that a cooling system cap becomes damaged or leaky, it will result in the pressurization of the cooling system being affected, and this is not something you want to leave go unattended. The radiator cap should only be removed when the engine is cool (whether to check the cap itself or to see how much fluid is in the radiator).

It is recommended that you change your quad bike or SXS coolant once every 60 months.

In order to maximise your chances of keeping your quadbikes or SXS running smoothly for as long as possible, you should stick to the recommended maintenance intervals laid out in your owner's manual for all five factors mentioned above. You should keep in mind that your riding habits will influence this timetable; if you use your machine more intensely or more severely, you should have it assessed and serviced every few months. The types of activities that are included under this use category include regular recreational activities like off-roading, racing, and high-load and low-speed operations that are often involved in farming. Therefore, you should check out your Polaris owner's manual and perform regular maintenance checks so that, no matter what task you are about to undertake, you will be prepared.

It would be great if you could add your Polaris to your list of things to spring clean if you are looking to take maintenance to the next level.

Beckside Machinery is an official Polaris dealer in the UK. We not only sell the popular Polaris Sportsman, Ranger, and RZR models, but also sell quality quad attachments, such as the widely popular FarmMaster ATV Mower.

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