Snowmobile reverse kits are a popular aftermarket accessory among sled riders. These kits add the reverse functionality to a snowmobile that doesn’t already have one. It saves time and effort for riders.
A snowmobile without the reverse functionality will have to be manually pushed in the reverse direction. It requires a lot of physical effort, especially for heavier snowmobiles. When towing heavy loads, the lack of reverse function can make it almost impossible to reverse the snowmobile without some help. Manual reversing can be quite tiring for people who ride for long hours or tow heavy loads.
What Is A Snowmobile Reverse Kit?
A snowmobile reverse kit is an aftermarket accessory that allows you to add the reverse function to a sled. These kits are suitable for people who own a snowmobile that lacks this feature. They can also be beneficial for freeing a sled stuck in the snow. It is cost-effective as otherwise the riders would have to spend money on a new snowmobile, which can be quite expensive.
Snowmobile reverse kits are designed based on the make and manufacturer of a snowmobile. Sleds of the same model manufactured during different years may require different revere kits.
Installing A Snowmobile Reverse Kit
Installing a snowmobile reverse kit is a mechanical process. Many dealers install snowmobile reverse kits on sleds. You can approach one of these dealers and ask them about the same. They might also give you a warranty on the installation.
You can also undertake the installation yourself if you have good knowledge and experience regarding the internal components of a snowmobile and the way they work. It will require around six hours for installing the kit. The process is somewhat challenging and requires fairly advanced mechanical skills.
Will I Have To Replace The Existing Gears?
Installation of a snowmobile reverse kit may or may not require you to change gears or other components of your sled. It will depend on the reverse kit and the model of the sled. You may have to purchase adapters, a complete set of new gears, or a whole new chaincase for accommodating the reverse kit. A whole new chaincase will cost more, but it will be easier to install.
Where Can I Buy A Snowmobile Reverse Kit?
You can buy a snowmobile reverse kits available as both OEM and aftermarket accessories. They are sold by the manufacturing company of the sled and generic brands. You can check the price and compatibility of the kit before committing to a purchase.
Brand new snowmobile reverse kits may not be available for old models of snowmobiles. You may have to purchase a used kit for these sleds. You must check the kit for wear and tear if you are buying it second-hand. When choosing a kit, pay special attention to its engine compatibility. Most reverse kits are not suitable for high-power engines. Installing one such kit on a powerful sled may cause permanent physical damage to both the kit and the sled. Make sure that the reverse kit that you are buying is the right fit for your sled. You may approach the manufacturer or a local dealer for confirming the same.
How to Choose a Snowmobile Reverse Kit?
When buying a snowmobile reverse kit, riders must ensure that it is compatible with their sled. These kits are designed specifically for particular models. Even when considering a specific model, a snowmobile reverse kit may only work with variants from certain years. A kit may work with Indy snowmobiles from 2010 to 2014, but not with models launched before or after that time period. It is because manufacturers may change or upgrade their engine, gearbox, and drive system components with the launch of new versions of their sleds. The gear shifting mechanism employed by the sled and the chaincase used will be the primary deciding factors for a kit’s compatibility. Some modifications will have to be made to a snowmobile reverse kit by the manufacturer to ensure that it works with newer sleds. Otherwise, buyers may get stuck with a non-compatible kit. They should check with the manufacturer to buy an appropriate option for their sleds.
Used vs. New Snowmobile Reverse Kits
A dilemma that riders face when searching for snowmobile reverse kits is whether they should buy new or used offerings. New snowmobile reverse kits should be the first preference of buyers. They are brand new parts from manufacturers, either OEM or aftermarket and will be in mint condition. There is no risk of finding a corroded or malfunctioning snowmobile reverse kit.
Sometimes, the only option a buyer may have is to purchase used snowmobile reverse kits. The person may be buying it for an old, discontinued model of sled or may not want to spend a significant amount of money on it. Used snowmobile reverse kits are either salvaged from defunct snowmobiles or sold by riders who no longer need them. Their condition will depend on how many miles they were used for and how well the owner maintained the sled. Sometimes, a snowmobile reverse kit that has been used for hundreds of miles may be in a better condition as compared to one that was used very rarely but was not well maintained. It may be corroded or tarnished and may not work smoothly.
When buying a used snowmobile reverse kit, buyers must pay attention to the teeth of the gears to determine their condition. They should look for any signs of corrosion and overheating or damage due to the lack of lubrication. The state of the seals and keyways and bearings must be considered as well.
The price of a snowmobile reverse kit must be considered as well. Quite a few times, they are sold at exorbitant prices, and it may be unwise to buy them. Generally, new ones that are readily available in stock are sold at regular rates. However, rare snowmobile reverse kits for models that are discontinued may carry a significant markup on their price. Even used ones can be quite expensive. Riders must contemplate if the asking price is worth adding the reverse functionality to their sleds. Selling their current sled and getting a snowmobile with reverse capability, even if used, may sometimes be the better option.