How To Fix an ATV Which Has No Electrical Power

One thing you don’t want to experience: putting the key in the ignition of your ATV, turning it, and getting no response. Just a dead quad. This post will tell you how to fix an ATV with no electrical power.

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Reasons Why an ATV Has No Electrical Power


The battery is the most common reason why an ATV or UTV won’t start.

First, look at it and make sure the battery isn’t corroded. If it is, try cleaning it with a scrubbing pad, water, and baking soda. If you can get it clean, try to start the machine again. If not, purchase a new battery.

Also, determine that the connections are in place and secure. Look at the wires for signs they are not loose, disconnected, corroded, or damaged. The positive and negative connections are lined up appropriately? If you hooked positive to negative, the battery could blow a fuse or mess up the computer.

Check the battery charge. It is easy to forget to charge your battery or think you’re charging it but the charger wasn’t working. Eliminate this possibility before moving on.

If your ATV passes those tests, test it with a load tester or take to an autoparts store so they can do it for you.

Kill Switch is Off

Another extremely common reason to have an ATV with no power when key is on is that the owner forgot their kill switch was turned off. If it is, the machine won’t start.

Fuses and Relays

Next, you’ll want to check the fuses. The main fuse box should be near the battery, but there is probably also one near your solenoid and one in the starter relay. A fuse could easily be blown. You might be noticing this problem after a particularly challenging ride. Each fuse has special metal parts made for testing. Use a multimeter and listen for beeping or buzzing. Both of these sounds mean your fuse is fine. If you determine that a fuse is bad, you’ll also have to figure out what caused it to blow.

Your ATV manufacturer may have supplied you with extra fuses. It’s always a good idea to have spares.

The fuses themselves might be okay, but their socket may be loose. Feel them to see if they feel secure.

While you’re there, check the relays. They are responsible for the display and the fuel pump.

Key Switch

The key switch itself could be bad or corroded. Or, the connectors could be loose or the pins worn out. If the key switch is corroded or full of water, you can apply some WD-40 or give it a deep clean and grease it (the more long term fix). If you can get it clean and dry again, try to start the machine and see what happens. If not, it may be too far gone, and you may need to replace it.

Kill Switch

Yes, it’s appearing on this list again. This time, the kill switch could be faulty. Check it to be sure it isn’t bad or corroded. Use the same trick and logic you did with the key switch.

Bad Computer

If you have a fuel-injected ATV and it has passed all of the other tests, you may have a faulty computer. Since it controls every aspect of your machine, if it doesn’t work, nothing happens. This job will require a mechanic’s skill, so don’t try to DIY unless you possess those skills.

Rollover Shutdown Relay

If your ATV has a rollover shutdown relay to turn the machine off if it flips, you might want to check it. Even if you haven’t flipped over, which hopefully you haven’t, something may be wrong with the relay and cause your ATV to not start.

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