One of the most exhilarating aspects of the ATV driving experience is the wide and varied terrain that you have at your disposal. From mountains to deserts, forests to parks, you’re in for a treat. Luckily, ATVs are designed to be able to deal with these different environments.
The component that enables these vehicles to deal with such terrain is the suspension. It works to mitigate the effects of any bumps in the road, resulting in a smoother and more enjoyable ride. In this article, we explain everything you need to know about Arctic Cat ATV suspensions and the role they play in enhancing your driving experience.
What is an ATV suspension?
An ATV suspension is the component of an all-terrain vehicle that ensures that it is able to handle rough terrain. n ATV suspension, compared to that of regular cars, is far more substantial, as off-roading presents more bumps, ditches, and obstacles than a flat road. As a result, it provides stability when riding on rough and uneven terrain.
How does an ATV suspension work?
There are two main components to an ATV suspension: the shock absorber and the spring. The shock absorbers help minimize the intensity of shocks. For example, if you were to drive over a rock, your shock absorbers would take in the majority of the shock, with the result that you would be protected from much of its impact. This helps make your ride as smooth as possible. One of the key logistical elements required to make shock absorbers work is oil. By lubricating them, you prevent them from compressing. If compressed, they are unable to absorb shocks.
The second component of the suspension is the spring, which is used to prevent compression. When your vehicle experiences an intense bump or shock, a spring will momentarily compress and then spring right back into its original position. It is essential to ensure that the springs in your vehicle are strong, as heavier spring tension will prevent your ATV from jumping back, and you will feel the full force of shocks.
What is an Arctic Cat ATVs suspension system made of?
An Arctic Cat's suspension system is made of a series of different components. If you are looking to upgrade your suspension system, you have the option to upgrade the whole thing or focus on specific parts.
Here is a list of all the parts in an Arctic Cat ATV:
- Suspension arms
- Ball joints and bushings
- Steering linkages
Types of suspensions used for Arctic Cat ATVs
ATVs are extremely customizable, which is why there are a multitude of options available for Arctic Cat suspensions. The suspension you choose will ultimately depend on your needs as well as your driving style. Below are some of the most popular suspensions on the market to elevate your Arctic Cat riding experience.
Independent suspension system
An independent suspension system is preferred by most ATV drivers, as it allows each individual wheel to function independently. Although the wheels all use the same axle in this system, they don’t rely on each other to move.
An independent rear suspension with a rear back shock absorber is a popular form of suspension, because if you are riding your ATV correctly, the back of the vehicle will experience the most amount of impact. For the smoothest ride, we suggest equipping your Arctic Cat with an independent system.
Dependent suspension system
At the other end of the spectrum, there is the dependent suspension system, where all the wheels on the vehicle are connected. All the components of this suspension system are connected by a frame/axle. A dependent system is usually recommended for vehicles that won’t be encountering rough terrain, as it is primarily designed to keep all four wheels on the ground. However, when off-roading on an ATV, you need the freedom to be able to gain air and traction, which this system is not designed to accommodate.
Types of shock absorbers used for Arctic Cat ATVs
Aftermarket shock absorbers are extremely popular when it comes to upgrading and customizing your ATV. Below are some of the most reputed shock absorbers on the market.
Standard non-adjustable shock absorbers
You will find this type of stock shock absorber on most ATVs, because it is the most well-rounded. Although it can’t be adjusted, it has impressive springs with high absorption capabilities, allowing your vehicle to easily deal with intense shocks.
Preload adjustable shock absorbers
This form of shock absorber is perfect for new riders. It comes with preloaded shock settings and a locking system, creating a more consistent riding experience.
Fully adjustable piggyback reservoir shock absorbers
These shock absorber suspension systems are recommended for experienced riders, because they are the most complicated. They are also the highest quality products on the market, and, by extension, the most costly. Many premium brands come with this system already installed in the vehicle.
Which type of suspension is better for Arctic Cat ATVs?
We recommend installing an independent suspension system. These systems afford your vehicle more flexibility than dependent suspension systems. This is essential when off roading.
Although an independent system is better for dealing with irregular and uneven terrain, you do need to be aware of its limitations. Independent systems don’t do well with heavy loads, which means that if you are planning on using your ATV for work purposes and need it to transport cargo, its effectiveness will be limited.
How long does an ATV suspension last?
You can expect the suspension of your ATV to last, on average, from 20,000 to 30,000 miles, or five years, whichever comes first. As you drive your ATV, all the elements of your suspension will begin to wear down. You therefore need to stay on top of suspension care.
Shop for Arctic Cat ATV accessories
One of the most important components of your ATV is its suspension. The type of suspension you install on your ATV will dictate how well it rides and influence how enjoyable your riding experience is. The same is true for all your ATV’s components which is why it’s important to consider customizing your Arctic Cat ATV and fitting it with unique components.
If you want to upgrade your Arctic Cat, Perfex Industries is here to help. We stock a variety of Arctic Cat ATV accessories, for a variety of Arctic Cat ATV models. We sell accessories for the following Arctic Cat models: