All-terrain vehicles (ATV), also known as quads or four-tracks, are four-wheeled vehicles with low-pressure tires that are designed to work on a wide range of terrains (some are even amphibious). They were initially marketed as recreational vehicles, but they have recently become more popular with hunters, ranchers, construction site workers, and mainly farmers.
ATVs and Farming
Smallholdings, which are small farms that mostly practice subsistence farming and grow cash crops, and hobby farms have begun to use AVTs in the same way they used horses — for travelling around the farm and for agricultural activities such as plowing and hauling.
The heavy and widespread use of ATVs in agriculture gave way to the term “farm quads”. Farming equipment manufacturers have also started manufacturing farming attachments designed explicitly for ATVs due to the vehicle’s widespread use in agriculture. Additionally, a lot of ATV manufacturing companies such as Honda have started making high-performance farm quads for sale that are specially designed for agriculture and optimized for moving heavy objects such as carts and farming attachments.
A Good Alternative for Small Farmers
For smaller farms or hobby farmers, buying farm equipment and vehicles such as farming tractors and harvesters could be very expensive and may not be cost-effective when used on a small plot of land. However, having ATVs and farming attachments are cheaper and more suited for small farms, and they also work well as a mode of transport around the farm. Compared to horses, which can also pull farm equipment and be used for transportation, ATVs are cheaper and require less maintenance and upkeep.
Uses of ATV in Farms
ATVs live up to their name and are versatile in any terrain. Your farm quad can help you get around your farm to check on the status of your crops, as well as patrol the perimeter for any issues with your soil, crops, or fence. Farm quads can handle pulling hundreds of pounds of supplies and crops with the use of a hauling attachment. Farm quads could be able to pull other attachments such as plows, rakes, harrows, pesticide applicators, and seed spreaders. Your farm quads could also be the perfect tool for fence building as you can transport all the tools and materials you need for your fence to where they’re needed. Your farm quad’s speed and terrain versatility also make it a good vehicle for rounding up cattle and livestock in your farm.
Safety When Using ATVs
It’s essential to use ANSI (or similar safety standard certifying bodies) certified full-faced helmets when using ATVs when travelling around the farm at moderate to high speed to reduce head and face injury as ATVs. Face shields and goggles are recommended when working with ATVs at a slow pace such as when plowing or seed spreading. One should protect as much skin as possible and safeguard one’s eyes when working with farm quads on the field; having gloves, long-sleeved shirts, and boots are recommended for one’s safety. When using pesticide applicator attachments for your farm quad or any other attachments that spray chemicals, one should use masks and goggles to avoid irritation or worse.
There’s no doubt that with the right model and proper attachments, farm quads are the best and cost-efficient vehicle for any smallholding or hobby farm. So if your farm horse is about to retire, or you’re simply choosing to get a farming vehicle for your small farm, it’s a good idea to check for local ATV dealers and check for farm quads for sale. But don’t forget to operate your farm quad and attachment safely, and use the proper protective gear when using them.