There are so many essential parts to an ATV, dirt bike, or motorcycle. From plugs to fuses to fluids, each one plays a vital a role. A gasket is one of those seemingly small parts that is crucial to smooth operation, and when it starts to go bad, it's never pretty. Your vehicle contains lots of gaskets, and it's important to know how to avoid blowing one, the signs that one is about to go bad, and what to look for if it blows. These are four tips to avoid blowing a gasket.

Regular Maintenance

First and foremost, don't procrastinate on your regular maintenance. Change your oil as often as the manufacturer recommends, and follow the other maintenance guidelines for changing transmission fluid, spark plugs, etc. Regular maintenance keeps your bike or ATV in top condition and takes stress off the various parts, including the gaskets.

Watch for Overheating

avoid blowing gasket windshield

Image via Flickr by h080

Learn to listen to your bike or recreational vehicle. You know how it normally sounds, and if it begins to rev too high or whine, you're probably pushing it too hard. Pushing your baby beyond its ability is like pushing a person beyond their abilities — it's generally a disaster. So, avoid the temptation to push too hard, and ease off if it starts to sound overworked. A sure sign that there's a problem is smoke or steam. If your vehicle starts to smoke from a particular area, it's probably too late. Time to turn off the engine and do some repairs.


Periodically look carefully at the engine and other parts of your ATV or bike to look for leaks. Fluids range in color. Sometimes they are clear, and other times they might be dark, so look carefully for drips or lots of moisture where it is normally dry. Steam or smoke can also be a result of fluid leaking onto hot parts. Try to follow the leak to find the cause. It's most likely a blown gasket or another part that needs to be tightened.

Loss of Power

If a gasket blows, something is going to leak — either fluid or air. Either way, it allows the compressed air or fuel to escape and can reduce your compression, which reduces power. If your bike starts to cut out or run rough, it could be a blown gasket. Turn it off and look for leaks, steam, or smoke. Look carefully, and more than likely, you'll be able to find the culprit.

A blown gasket is super frustrating, and it often results in the owner blowing a gasket, too. Normally calm people are known to completely lose it when their rare day off turns into playing mechanic and sitting on the sidelines watching their buddies have all the fun. Then, somehow, we never have the right sized tools, or they mysteriously disappear, and the whole day is wasted. We know it's irritating, but it's all a rite of passage for recreational riders. Take some deep breaths and remember that soon you'll be back on your bike or ATV enjoying the wind in your hair and the thrill of speeding through the trees, mountains, or dunes.

Purchase Gasket from Redfoxpowersports

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