How-To Guide

How to Choose an ATV Ramp

How to choose an ATV Ramp

Thinking about hitting some trails with your four-wheeler this summer? Whether you plan on towing your ATV or hauling it in the back of your pickup truck, you will need a ramp that is designed to support the full weight of your ride. Here are some factors to consider when researching ATV ramps:

Find the total weight of your ATV
1

Find the total weight of your ATV

It’s always better to get ramps with a higher weight capacity than needed, especially if you might upgrade to a larger four-wheeler in the future. So, we have to find out the absolute minimum that a ramp would be able to support for your particular make or model. To find the total, overall weight of your current setup, take the weight of your quad (refer to the owner’s manual for this information), the fuel weight (fuel tank capacity in gallons times 8.5 pounds), the weight of all the accessories and attachments (either available online or it their individual owner’s manuals), the driver’s weight, and the load/cargo weight.


Assess if your ATV is the only vehicle you need to load up
2

Assess if your ATV is the only vehicle you need to load up

If you’ll need to transport other vehicles or equipment such as motorcycles, lawnmowers, or golf carts, then perhaps you need a ramp that is multi-purpose, such as an arched trailer ramp which can easily handle most low clearance vehicles. Keep in mind that you do plan on using a set of ramps for multiple purposes, you must make sure that they will be able to support the weight of your heaviest piece of equipment, fully loaded up with fuel, accessories, and a driver (if applicable).


Decide how you will be transporting your ATV
3

Decide how you will be transporting your ATV

If you plan on loading it into your pickup bed, the ramps you purchase must be longer than ramps that would be needed for loading it onto a small trailer. If it’s going to be in or on a trailer with low ground clearance, that will drastically reduce the size of the ramp you need as well. Fortunately, the difference in the rises will be covered when you calculate the measurements to determine your minimum ramp length.


Think about portability
4

Think about portability

Bifold and trifold ramps are convenient because they can usually be carried with greater ease than non-folding ramps, and certain folding ramps can fit between the tires of your ATV during transport. Non-folding ramps are likely to be bulkier and you may need to store them separately. Some arched ramps can come folded, as can dual runners, which tend to be a narrower ramp option. Trailer ramps are the least portable, however they will provide the greatest ramp surface area and can be used to load other equipment.


ATV Ramp Calculator

Please enter wheel base.
Please enter wheel base.
Please enter wheel base.
Minimum ramp length = ft. (1:12 Slope)
5

Determine your minimum ramp length

Three key measurements are needed to determine the proper ramp length for your four-wheeler – the wheelbase, ground clearance, and loading height (also known as rise). The wheelbase is the distance between the centers of the front and rear wheels. The ground clearance is the distance from the ground to the lowest part of the ATV. The loading height, or rise, is the distance from the ground to the flat surface of your truck or trailer.


Think about the pros and cons of aluminum versus steel
6

Think about the pros and cons of aluminum versus steel

Serious ramps are made from either steel or aluminum. Both materials have advantages, however one might make more sense that the other for your needs. Steel ramps are extremely strong and durable, with greater resistance to fatigue and bending than aluminum. Steel ramps are generally less expensive than aluminum ramps, however they are more susceptible to rust and corrosion than aluminum. On the other hand, rust-resistance is aluminum’s middle name! Aluminum is not as dense as steel, therefore aluminum ramps typically weigh less than their steel counterparts, which is convenient when a single person has to carry them.