Do ATV Batteries Come Charged?

To get the best performance life out of your ATV battery, you must first fully charge them and measure that their charge Voltage is 100% before first use.

Most modern ATVs are fitted with AGM Batteries whilst older model ATVs are fitted with Conventional Batteries. These batteries are either supplied as Factory Activated (FA) or Bottle Supplied Electrolyte (BS). All these ATV batteries require charging before first installation and use.

Whether you are installing a new battery in your ATV or whether buying a brand-new ATV, the question of whether the battery comes fully charged or needs some charging before first use requires some further attention.

Why do ATVs need Batteries?

The ATV battery is a massive power source. It supplies power to the ATVs starter motor to crank the engine to life at the push of the start button. Once the engine is running, the battery supplies power to other electrical systems on the ATV, such as lights, GPS, USB outlets, and other electrical accessories.

The ATV engine is fitted with an Alternator that provides an electrical charge to the battery, which powers the electrical systems in return. The Alternator may not always fully recharge the ATVs battery, even after running for a full day. It is thus recommended to always connect the ATV battery to a charger when not in use. This ensures that your ATV will always be ready to fire up when the Start Button is pressed.

It is well worth the money to buy a good quality ATV battery and charger. A poor-quality charger can limit the battery’s life and cause the need for a replacement sooner than what would be possible with a good-quality charger. A poor charger can spoil a good battery and, in the end, cost you more money.

Regular battery checks are important to ensure that batteries are always in top condition and maximized battery life. The frustration of an ATV that fails to start or runs with a poorly maintained battery can be easily avoided by following some simple basics.

Whether you have a brand-new ATV or just a new ATV Battery, one of the first things to check is the battery Voltage, using a multi-meter. When fully charged, conventional flooded ATV batteries must have a voltage between 12.6 and 12.8 V.  An AGM battery must have a voltage between 12.8 and 13.1 V. Connect the battery to a good quality smart charger and charge overnight to remeasure the battery Voltage.

Should I Charge the Battery of My New ATV?

Your new ATV may have been parked on a dealer floor for some time before you buy it. That means that some battery charges have most certainly drained off as the ATV was not connected to a charger. It is thus recommended that you charge the battery overnight to ensure that it has a fully charged battery before starting it up for the first time.

How Long will it take to Charge a New ATV Battery?

A full charge will take between 3 and 10 hours. However, this varies from battery to battery and the type of charger used. A charger without an automatic shut-off when the battery is fully charged can overcharge the battery and cause significant damage to the new battery. Leaving the battery on charge overnight on a good quality charger will ensure you have a 100% charged battery.

Does a New Replacement Battery Come Charged?

Your new replacement battery may contain some charge, but it is most likely not fully charged. To ensure that your new battery is 100% charged before first use, connect it to a good quality battery charger and let it charge overnight. After charging, let the battery cool off for at least 30 minutes and measure the voltage with a Multi-meter.

How Long Should an ATV Battery Last?

The average lifespan of a typical ATV battery is three to five years. However, your battery’s lifespan will be dependent on several factors that may include:

Battery quality

The overall lifespan of your battery hugely depends on the type of the battery itself. Conventional batteries are the most popular batteries currently used on most ATVs. AGM batteries offer improved performance compared to their Conventional batteries, but they are more expensive. Expect to pay between $50 to $100.

Battery usage

How often you use your ATV will affect the battery lifetime. If you use your ATV daily and connect it to a Smart Charger when not in use, it will still have a shorter life than when the ATV is only used occasionally and is connected to a Smart Charger when not in use.

Ambient Temperature

Very Low or Very High Temperatures significantly affect an ATV battery’s lifetime. Extreme temperatures cause the Electrolyte in the battery to decompose. Therefore, it is recommended to park ATVs or store batteries in a place where the temperature range is between 59ᵒ F and100ᵒ F. Prolonged exposure to temperatures outside of this range will significantly affect battery life.

Charger quality

What you save on a cheap, low-quality battery charger, you will lose many times over replacing batteries due to shortened lifetime. Buy a Battery Charger that automatically switches to Maintenance Mode when the battery is fully charged. It must be designed to prevent overcharging. Ask the Battery Supplier for a recommendation that comes with a 5- year warranty.

How much do ATV Batteries Cost?

The cost of ATV batteries will depend on the type of battery prescribed by your ATV Manufacturer as defined in the User Manual. There are three types of ATV batteries: Conventional, Enhanced Flooded Battery (EFB), and Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM batteries. Expect to pay between $50 to $100 for a new replacement ATV battery.


Whether the New ATV battery you have purchased comes partially charged (FA) or must first be filled with electrolyte (BS) always check the Voltage and then place the battery on slow charge overnight. Disconnect the battery and let it cool for at least 30 minutes, then measure the Voltage again. If the Voltage is not between 12.6V and 3.1V, contact the Battery Supplier for assistance. This will ensure that you get the best performance and lifetime from your ATV battery.


Louis Pretorius

As an amateur off-road enthusiast, I have always been drawn to outdoor adventure. I have decided to share all of my learning experiences with you as I dig a little deeper into my new-found passion and wonderful world of off-roading. My mission is to create the Ultimate Off-roading space on the internet in the process. Stay safe and happy Off-Roading!

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