Keeping your ATV in great shape should always be a year-round task, but if keeping up maintenance isn't your thing, there's no better time to get your ATV in gear than the upcoming spring. With mud season in full swing, it's a good idea to prepare your ATV for the serious rides ahead of it. Here are a few tips to keep in mind as spring approaches.

Conduct a Boot Check

Each one of your ATV's CV axle boots is susceptible to damage during rough riding, so it pays to inspect them on a regular basis. Damaged CV axle boots will let grease escape the axle joint while allowing mud and water to enter. If left unchecked, ripped boots can lead to a destroyed CV axle.

Protect Those Connectors

It's all-too-easy for your ATV's electrical connectors to be exposed to mud and water, especially when you're riding on those muddy trails or simply out in damp weather. Exposure to moisture can cause these connectors to corrode over time, which could cause your ATV's electrics to go haywire or stop working at all.

When it comes to protecting those electrical connectors, a few dabs of dielectric grease can go a long way. Dielectric grease provides a non-conductive barrier against moisture and salts. Simply unplug the connector, apply a small amount of dielectric grease around the connector and then reconnect it.

Get a Grip

If your grips are looking a bit old and busted, it's probably time to replace them with a new pair. Brand-new grips do more than freshen up your ATV's looks. New grips also give your gloved hands the traction needed to hang on when riding rough trails.

To make removing your old grips a bit easier, you can spray contact cleaner underneath the grip as you work it loose with a screwdriver or pry tool. You can also cut off the grips with a razor blade, but only if don't plan on keeping your old grips for another purpose.

Don't Leave Your Suspension in Suspense

The last thing you want to do is ignore squeaks, rattles or any other oddities from your suspension. If your ATV's handling feels a bit sloppy, then there's a good chance your suspension needs service. New bearings and bushings can help eliminate suspension play while keeping other components from being damaged further.

If your ATV comes with grease zerks, be sure to locate and fill every zerk with the appropriate grease. Don't forget to inspect your A-arms, sway bars and steering stems for any signs of damage or rust buildup.

It's also a good idea to check your tires. Make sure your tires aren't leaking from the valve stem or the bead. Look for punctures and cuts in the tire. If you run your tires at low pressure for extra traction, consider investing in a set of beadlock wheels.

Invest in CVT Service

Whether you've ridden your ATV throughout the winter or kept it under wraps for the entire season, it's a good idea to have the CVT inspected and serviced as needed. If you've recently ridden your ATV, pull the CVT drain plug and check for water in the transmission.

Remove the CVT cover and take a close look at the belt. Replace the belt if you see any signs of glazing or fraying. Check the belt pulleys and clutches for signs of rust or corrosion. Use compressed air to blast residue from the primary and secondary clutches or remove the clutches for a thorough cleaning with carburetor spray.

Don't Forget About Your Diffs

Before you start riding your ATV for the spring and summer, take some time to change the oil in your front and rear differential. Doing so will help increase its performance as well as its lifespan. This will also give you an opportunity to check for water intrusion as well as physical damage to the differential itself. It's best to stick with the differential oil that's recommended by the ATV manufacturer for your specific machine. 

If your ATV isn't in good shape, you should consider looking at ATVs for sale online