ATVs and UTVs have become increasingly popular in recent years due to the multitude of options now available on the market. Outdoor lovers, farmers, and ranchers alike have been purchasing ATVs and UTVs for work-related tasks and recreational activities. The capabilities of these vehicles are continuously being pushed beyond their limits with rough terrain and muddy courses, creating an ideal environment for testing out their strength and durability.
One part of the ATV that can be easily worn down is its axle. An ATV's axle transfers power from the engine and transmission to the wheels while also allowing free movement. Being aware of the signs of a worn-down or damaged axle can help you determine when it’s time to replace it, so we’re going over a few symptoms that indicate your vehicle may need some attention:
Clicking Or Popping Sounds When Turning
Damaged or neglected ATV axles can often be identified by a distinct popping or clicking sound while turning. This is caused by the joint not rotating properly due to inadequate lubrication, leading to lost traction and instability. Without adequate lubrication, the axle joint will suffer from wear and tear and become more prone to binding. This, in turn, can lead to a grinding noise while turning, as well as increased vibration and potential damage to other components.
When speeding up or slowing down, a clunking noise indicates a bad ATV axle. This type of sound often occurs due to excessive slack in the joint, allowing it to move back and forth and create a clicking sound as weight is applied during acceleration or deceleration. This can be caused by worn parts, such as rubber bushings, bearings, u-joints, or other components which may need replacing. Additionally, if the axle is broken or bent, it can create this same sound.
Constant Humming Sound
When operating your ATV, you should only hear the sound of the engine, exhaust, and tires running across the ground. If any other strange noises arise, it likely indicates a problem. One tell-tale sign that suggests a worn-out CV axle is a persistent humming noise when driving your off-road vehicle. This sound usually intensifies when accelerating and is consistent regardless of the terrain you’re driving on.
Vibrations Are Felt When Accelerating Or Braking
When accelerating or speeding up, the clicking noise from a bad axle can be heard and felt. This sound and sensation are caused by an improperly-aligned joint which allows for extra movement in the drivetrain, resulting in metallic clicking sounds when the ATV/UTV accelerates. The vibration of this sound can be quite significant and may even be felt through other parts of the vehicle such as the steering wheel.
Loss Of Power To One Wheel
If your ATV wheel has ceased to rotate, it is likely that you have damaged an axle beyond repair. This is a common problem frequently encountered when running the original axles that come with the vehicle as they suffer through intense wear and tear.
At GSP Latin America, we offer high-quality replacement ATV axles to give you factory-like fitment with upgraded components. Our ATV axles install with no modification and will be built using higher-quality materials to give you an axle that will stand up to more abuse and more miles.