Whether you’re going to trade in an old sled or sell it, you want to squeeze every green dollar out of your used sled. With a little elbow grease and a few hours, you’ll maximize its value. Here are five must-do steps to prep a used sled for sale.

Wash the snowmobile
The most important step to maximize value of your used sled is to wash it — thoroughly. This needs to be done with hot, soapy water and a thick sponge and scrub brush to cut through the grime. Degrease the engine and oil tank and then rub the nosepan with WD-40 to give it a subtle sheen.

Paint the exhaust pipe
Blowing on a coat of fresh paint works wonders to make a used snowmobile look less experienced. Remove it from the sled and sand it with emery cloth to remove the rust. Rinse the pipe with water from a garden hose, set it in the sun to dry and then put on a couple coats of black, high-temp paint. Paint the Y-pipe, too.

Replace missing, damaged parts
Missing parts from a used sled might make potential buyers suspicious of the care your machine received, so make sure your used sled is ready to go down the trail when it’s put up for sale. Conduct a careful inspection; if a reflector, rear suspension wheel cover or exhaust pipe spring is missing, replace it.

Prepare the track
Nothing scares away used sled buyers quicker than a damaged track. Run the flame from a propane or MAPP gas torch along the edge of the track to burn the white, exposed fibers. You’re not hiding imminent failure; you’re just trying to make the sled look neat and tidy. It’s normal for these fibers to protrude after a few hundred miles. Adjust tension and align the track, too.

Make sure it runs
Before the first person shows up in your garage to inspect your used snowmobile, make sure it fires up within two or three pulls of the recoil rope. It should idle steadily and increase RPM without hesitation when you squeeze the throttle. Adjust the belt and chain so the machine doesn’t make any strange clunks as RPM increases.

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