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How To Clean The Air Filter On An ATV

How To Clean The Air Filter On An ATV

There are many things that you should do in order to maintain your ATV in good shape. In this article we are just going to explore the steps to clean the air filter of your ATV which, even though it sounds like a minor thing to do, which you shouldn’t pay that much attention, you should.

A clean air filter on an ATV avoids future problems on the engine. Sometimes you can clean the foam from your filter by hands but other times you may need some chemical assistance. While paper filters are easy to clean, foam filters can be a little bit trickier.

Steps To Clean An ATV Air Filter

So, the first step is actually checking what kind of filter your ATV has. Most ATVs have the foam type filter. You will also want to purchase, if you don’t already have them, the right products for the process. You won’t need much apart from a cleaning solution and a waterproof protection. You don’t have to worry about this yet since we will explain in more detail what the right products to use for your type of filter are.

Besides that, check if you have a bucket or another type of big container and a tray or something similar. If you follow the steps you won’t have any troubles cleaning the air filter of your ATV because it’s a very easy process to go through.

Stuff You Will Need

Cleaning Solution: If you want to soak you filter overnight to really deep clean it, try this Air Filter Cleaner found here from Amazon that I use.

Oil Treatment: You need to treat the filter after you clean it. I recommend this kit that has an Oil Treatment Spray found here on Amazon.

A Bucket: To clean the filter in.

A Tray: Or piece of cardboard to lay under the air filter box.

Steps To Take

The first thing you will need to do is to find a large container (like a bucket for example) in which you will wash the filter. Keep in mind that, wherever you decided to set your work/cleaning space, you should put away anything that you may damage accidentally while cleaning the air filter.

Fill Bucket And Wash Filter

The next step is to pour the cleaning solution into your bucket as directed. Be sure that it is the right one for your type of filter, otherwise you can damage it. Do not immediately rub the filter because you can tear it apart. Instead, carefully massage the filter into the solution.

When doing this, you should be looking for signs that you are breaking down the oils from the filter into the solution. After making sure that you managed to take all the debris and oil out from the filter, always rubbing it carefully, transfer the filter into another bucket with clean water.

Rinse Filter

After transferring the filter into a bucket with clean water try to check, ever so gently, for potential tears or other type of damage in the filter to make sure everything is okay. Please do not use gasoline to clean a foam filter since gasoline or other flammable chemicals can create damage to the filter.

Completely Dry Air Filter

Then, you need to put your filter aside and let it dry completely. Remember that this is not about rushing the process, the filter needs to be completely dry to move forward. So, now that you made sure that your filter is completely dry, you will have to apply fresh oil to the filter.

Apply Oil To Air Filter

The same way you had to remove all the debris from the filter very carefully, you will also have to oil the filter very carefully. When doing this, you need to be sure that all the filter’s surfaces are equally oiled as well as the layers. Take your time when working the oil into the whole filter.

Once more, after you oiled the filter you will need to let it rest for a few hours to dry the oil (also, make sure to take the excess of oil out of the filter by squeezing it gently before you let it dry).

This time you don’t need to be sure that the filter is completely dry. In fact, the filter can be left to dry in the air box. So, if you have the time which we advise you should, only put the filter in when the oil is almost dry.

If you are having doubts for when you know when the filter is ready or not, you should check for a change in the thickness of the filter oil. When the oil is looking thicker, almost with a tacky feeling than you know it’s ready to go into the air box.

Put Air Filter Back Into Filter Box

When inserting the filter in the air box be sure to use an indicated product to spray the inside of the air box with and remove the plug in the bottom of the box. The reason why you want to do this is to guarantee that there won’t be any excess oil trapped inside. For that you will need to place a tray or another tray-looking recipient to catch the excess with.

The last step of cleaning an air filter of an ATV is to find a waterproof product to finalize the process. These kind of products are usually based on a grease-like protection. The reason why you will want to use a product like this is to prevent other contaminants from going into the filter unnecessarily, by sealing the edge of the filter.

This part is not completely necessary but can help extend the life of your ATV. This way, your filter will last longer until the next time you will have to take it out to clean it again. Besides, it will ensure the best performance of your ATV for a much longer time.

Sum It Up

If you followed all these steps then you most likely didn’t experience any troubles when cleaning the air filter of your ATV. You will find that, with the right tools and products there is really no reason for not doing this in the comfort of your home (or home garage).

Like you might have noticed when reading through the steps, even though this is an easy thing to do, it’s not a fast process. The main reason is the whole wait for the filter to dry two times thing. However, it is worth being patient when cleaning the air filter to ensure that your time won’t be wasted and to end up with a perfectly cleaned air filter ready to go into your ATV. Otherwise, if you rush the process you can easily accidentally damage the air filter to the point where it can’t be used again and then you would have to find and buy another one. 

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