An ATV, also known as an all-terrain vehicle encompasses a range of vehicles from quad bikes and four-wheelers, to quadricycles. These vehicles operate on low-pressure tires and can offer their users hours of endless fun. However, before the fun begins, you have to get your ATV to the designated driving area, since many states do not allow them on their roads. So, how do you do this effortlessly, and without it being a momentous and stressful job? Well it’s great if you can have a friend or two handy and you will need to invest in some great ramps and ratchet straps. But once you’ve got all the gear, how exactly do you do it effortlessly and securely? Follow our tips on loading your ATV onto a truck to make this task a little easier. After all, the quicker you can load your ATV onto your truck, the more time you will have to revel in some amazing adventure fun.
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1. The Beatles Got It Right When They Said, ‘You Get By With A Little Help From Your Friends’ – Make Sure You Have Some Help!
Friends are one of the greatest joys in life, and when it comes to your ATV and loading it onto your truck, they will be a massive help. ATV’s might be smaller than other vehicles, but this doesn’t mean that they are light, in fact, they can be pretty heavy. To effectively load your ATV onto a truck, you will need a friend or 2 to make the task more manageable. Your friends can help you to set up the ramp, to slowly but smoothly creep your ATV up the ramp, and even sit on the front or back edge of the vehicle while you are strapping it down. If you are going on ATV adventures with a group of people ask a buddy to be your truck-loading mate. They can help you load your ATV and they can help you to load your one.
2. Get A Ramp! A Great Quality Ramp
The first thing you are going to need if you want to safely and easily load your ATV onto your truck, is a safe and secure ramp. You need to ensure that the ramp is properly fixed to your truck so that it doesn’t collapse under the pressure of your ATV and cause damage to the vehicle, or even you. The best way to secure the ramp is to use ratchet straps. You will also need to ensure that the ramp is the correct size. It needs to be wide enough for your ATV (to ensure that it gains proper traction and can easily be wheeled up the ramp), but it also needs to be long enough. Touching the ground is not the only prerequisite when it comes to the length of your ramp. It needs to sit at a good angle that allows you to easily wheel your vehicle up. If you have made changes to your ATV (such as bigger wheels) you will probably need a longer ramp. The best bet is to opt for an extendable ramp that fits to the back of your truck, however these can be more costly and are thus a real investment.
3. Choose An Easy Spot To Do The Loading: Location, Location, Location
So your ramp is set up, and now it’s time to actually load your ATV onto your truck. You will want to choose a spot that is flat, level and secure, so that your ramp can remain sturdy and won’t slide as you attempt to wheel the ATV into the truck. If you are concerned about the ramp slipping off the bumper or moving around, ensure you secure it with straps.
4. The Loading Part
Once you have set up your ramp securely and found a flat and sturdy piece of ground, it is time to load your ATV onto your truck.
- Put your tailgate down before you begin. This is essential to securely attach your ramp.
- Turn your ATV on and place your ATV into 4-wheel low gear. This setting is great for higher inclines and more slippery surfaces and is a far better option that the 4-wheel high gear. 4 wheel high is better suited for gravel roads, where some of the surface might be uneven or loose.
- You will now need to give your ATV a little gas so that it can get up the ramp. It’s important that you give it a moderate amount. Too much and you could cause an accident, but too little and your ATV won’t make it up the ramp. Ensure that you are firm and controlled with the throttle as you do not want to stall your vehicle. If you stall, you might end up rolling the ATV backwards and you will be back when you started. Getting the right amount of gas and pressure is super important to ensure that you get it up the ramp easily.
- Once the ATV is on the ramp you will need to slowly push it forward. It’s helpful if a friend can stand on the other side and push it with you. Once the entire ATV is on your truck and off the ramp, you will need to back the throttle down so that your wheels aren’t moving at a high speed once your ATV is on the truck.
5. Secure the ATV in Place
Now that your ATV is securely on your truck, it’s time to securely strap it down to ensure that it stays in place and doesn’t fall off mid-drive and cause major damage or a bad accident. You will need to tie down your ATV at all the points that can cause suspension to ensure that it remains securely in place. Ratchet straps are best for the job.
This is also another time when it’s very handy to have a friend or two with you. While you’re tying down your ATV it can be helpful for someone to sit on the front or back of your vehicle. It’s helpful at this point to close the tailgate and remove the ramp so that your ATV is securely contained.
Once it is securely in place, you are ready to safely drive away and your ATV shouldn’t move around at the back of your truck. If the straps are not tied properly it can cause unnecessary damage, or scratches and won’t be the safest of drives.
Like any how-to when it comes to vehicles, safety should always be at the fore of any task. These safety features might seem simple, but they are super important when it comes to loading your ATV onto your truck and will ensure that you get the job done safely. It’s important to put safety mechanisms in place to protect you, your friends, your ATV, and your vehicle.
- Never ride your ATV onto the truck!
While this might sound cool and you might have visions of effortless gliding onto the ramp and parking your car on the truck in style, this can all go horribly wrong and could end up in injury, or serious damage to your ATV and truck. If you rev too much you might not be able to stop at the desired time and could cause a lot of harm to yourself, and even those around you. While this might sound like a tempting quick-fix solution, just don’t do it!
- Wear some safety gear!
When you’re loading your ATV onto your truck, always wear safety gear. While you might not feel like the coolest ATV driver in town, safety is always key and a helmet and solid shoes will prevent possible injury if the ramp collapses or the ATV falls off the ramp.
- Ensure that the tailgate is properly closed
This might seem like an obvious one, but always double check that your tailgate is properly secured before you drive away. If your tailgate is loose and your straps somehow give way this can be a recipe for real disaster and can mean that your ATV falls off the back of your truck. Thus you always need to ensure that it’s locked tightly. Also ensure that your ramp has been removed and is stored in a secure and safe place.