3 Things No One Ever Told You About Owning an ATV

Sponsored by Progressive Insurance

Anyone out there plan on owning an ATV in the near future? Read this first!

So you've set your sights on owning an ATV, and you're as pumped up as can be.

You're picturing yourself flying across the Earth, ripping tire tracks through amazing backcountry trails and going where no other vehicle can go.

Well, before you frame that picture in your head, you're going to need to be clear on a few things. That's because there are things no one ever tells you about owning an ATV, and it's usually past the point of no return once you learn them.

The sooner you can come to terms with these three things, the sooner you'll be enjoying your new ATV the right way.

1. Their values depreciate almost as bad as cars

OK, maybe it's not quite on the same scale, but if you think you're going to buy an ATV, then sell it for a similar price years later, you're dreaming.

Much like the auto industry, ATV brands push to come out with the next best thing, and yearly model and spec changes are almost a given. Once you believe you have the best and fastest, someone else comes out with something to beat it.

That's just kind of how the world on wheels works, and something you'll have to accept. It's not a huge downer, but it can be a reality check if you don't intend to keep the ATV for a long time.

2. You're going to need coverage

Don't think that just because you aren't driving an ATV on city streets, you therefore don't need to be insured and up to snuff with proper ownership paperwork.

It's not like you need a new filing cabinet to own an ATV, but there are a few more things to worry about besides getting the keys in your hands. An insurance company, like Progressive, will have plans to cover just about anything, especially off-road vehicles, like ATVs. Get the coverage so you can get some peace of mind — should anything happen.

3. There are still rules to follow

Part of the beauty of owning an ATV is the "no limits," "ride 'til dark," "I'll sleep when I'm dead" kind of attitude. Sometimes you just don't want to get off the thing!

But that can cross over into risk-taking territory real fast, and we want to urge caution (especially for new owners and riders). There's no sense in doing something you aren't comfortable with just because you're in the seat of an ATV. You aren't indestructible, and ATV accidents can — and will — happen.

It's up to you to follow all guidelines and rules, and, more importantly, to know those rules, especially when it comes to individual tracks. Familiarize yourself with your machine, and know how to spot problems, or potential ones.

The biggest thing is to remember where ATVs can take you, and by that we mean far away. Be sure to have basic survival items, like a First Aid Kit, water, a knife, and even some snacks with a long shelf life. You never want to get stranded with your ATV in the wilderness, but if you do, at least you'll be prepared.