When it comes to the warranty on your ATV and adding a snorkel, it can get tricky.
Most of the time adding a snorkel does void your warranty or at least parts of your warranty. But manufacturers have been paying attention to the mudding segment and have made some changes to help better protect you.
Manufacturers have noticed the growing want of customers to have a “mud ready machine.” Can-Am, for example, has the xMR which is made just for this segment.
Something interesting about this segment is that these mud machines don’t have that long of a warranty. Even when promotions are going on, they still keep a 6-month warranty on average.
That tells you something. Even the manufacturer knows there is more risk involved with submerging your ATV in too deep of water.
The Good News
Time for some good news. While adding your own snorkel made of PVC is more likely to void the warranty many ATV manufacturers have come out with their own approved snorkel systems.
At least with the OEM snorkel you know it’ll fit and look way better than some PVC pipes.
To give you an idea of OEM snorkels here is a list of some.
What Is A Warranty?
I feel I need to define what’s a warranty.
A warranty does not cover your screw ups. A warranty only covers the manufacturers screw ups.
Running into a tree is not covered under warranty along with sinking your ATV.
The engine blowing because someone at the factory didn’t do their job right is what a warranty is for.
I’ve seen far too many people with the wrong expectations when it comes to warranties. I’ve had people who flipped their ATV down the side of a mountain wanting it claimed under warranty – yea nope not happening. This is why you get insurance!
And that might be what you need instead of a warranty? Look for an insurance company that covers water ingestion but also keep in mind they may not cover some cases. Sometimes insurance can be tricky but still good to have especially if theft is an issue for you.
What it boils down to is if you want to go in deep water or mud a warranty should not be something you care about.
If you install the snorkel correctly, it will do its job of keeping water out of the engine but don’t expect someone to cover it in the chance things fail. Think of it like this, would you rather buy a new engine because the engine blew from water ingestion or install a snorkel and get a fighting chance? Either way could end in water destroying the motor and voiding the warranty, but at least with a snorkel, it’s less likely.
The Dealership Matters
One sneaky thing about warranties is that the dealership matters. Some dealerships will bend more either because they rank higher with the manufacturers or want to keep certain customers happy.
This is why buying from your local dealer and a good dealer is better than just shopping on price. The dealer that you buy from is more willing to bend over backward to keep you happy. But the guy 3 states away selling it to you for pennies won’t ever see you again and could be selling you a machine they know will need a lot of warranty work.
Yes, I know it sucks but its just business. I would be pissed if I got an ATV for an excellent deal but bought it somewhere else and my local dealer can’t help me much. But you also got to think about the guy who did buy local and paid a little bit more, and it would be unfair for him to get pushed behind the guy who did not buy local.
You want the dealership to be your friend. After all, friends help each other out.
What About Tires?
Usually, when someone is looking if a snorkel will void the warranty, they wonder about tires too.
I’ve personally never seen tires be too much of an issue unless you’ve gone too crazy. When I say crazy, I’m talking a 300cc ATV with huge 26″ mud tires on it. That little engine with its small CVT is not going to handle it well.
That is the issue you’ll run into. Small engines have small transmissions, and they can’t handle the bigger tires. It’s best to drive in LOW if you have big tires on or you’ll burn up your belts and your transmission over time.
Since a belt is more of a wear and tear item don’t expect it to be covered under warranty. It’s so rare that I would not even consider it.
When it comes to tires be honest with yourself and don’t put oversized tires on an ATV that can’t handle it.
You Got To Pay To Play!
To wrap this up, I want to remind everyone “you got to pay to play.”
Don’t cheat your dealer and understand these things are toys. If you want to play on them, you can’t go around breaking them and expecting something for free.
I know I’ll get some flack for saying that, but it’s true. Be reasonable and understand that you have to pay to play especially in rough conditions like mudding.