How To Tell If ATV Jumped Time

Did your ATV jumped time ?

Atv jumping time scenario is not that common but if it happens then you need to attend it with urgency and care. Experts suggest that when you suspect that your atv has jumped time, it is best to not run the motor. Getting a proper check on all the symptoms you are noticing in your ATV is very important. Many times riders have mistaken a valve problem for a jumped time.

The crankshaft remains balanced with the camshaft in per rotation due to the presence and functioning of the timing chain. This connection maintains the timing of the valves during their opening and closing turns. If the timing is not accurate and jumping occurs the camshaft and vehicle starting will not happen in a correct sequence. The four cycles of the combustion stroke are the ideal ones.

The timing doesn’t jump all of a sudden neither the timing chain breaks down abruptly. There will be several signs and symptoms which you need to read while riding the all-terrain vehicle. Most of the symptoms will be related to starting up of the engine and the performance of the all-terrain vehicle.

Off-road vehicles need precise timing because of the rough terrains and quick adjustments. All of the components of the vehicle need to work in synchronization for smooth rides on difficult trails. The crankshaft of the atv engine stays in coordination with the valve set.

 This indirectly works on controlling the chains, sockets and tension balancers. The timing chain can happen when the chains and valve trains would require adjustments or proper maintenance of routine checks.

The Crankshaft Area With Sprockets And Teeth Placements.
The crankshaft area with sprockets and teeth placements.


 How to check ATV jumping time

The atv of yours can jump time even if it’s of the best features and performance. So there is nothing to be dreadful about in this situation as it can happen to any atv.The right way is to first make sure if the vehicle has actually jumped time or not. You need to have access inside the vehicle for accessing the different components which are needed to be analyzed for jumping time. The procedure is as follows:

  • The spark plug needs to be removed for having better access and makes checking over the motor much simpler. Then you need to take off the camshaft cover and you will be able to see the sprockets and timing chain. Then you need to also remove the cap which provides access to the flywheel bolt and inspection cover of the timing flywheel marking.
  • The flywheel is the component that would require some adjustments. The flywheel needs to be rotated in the opposite direction to clockwise very gently and slowly. The tools which you would definitely need is the right ratchet and socket. There will be an inspection window present that will show the timing mark as ‘T’. The meaning of this will be the top dead centre.
  • The top dead centre is the correct setting for checking the other aspects. You need to then check on the sprockets which have cam timing. The general sprocket identification will be two marks for every sprocket. One of the marks points in an upwards direction at a ninety-degree angle and the other aligns with the flat plain of the horizon. 
  • After checking the cam sprocket marks if you conclude that the marks don’t align then you need to turn the flywheel again in the anti-clockwise direction in a full turn. The top dead centre needs to be set again in the checking window one more time. The alignment should then be on the plain horizon of the head on the cylinder. The extra cam sprocket mark should be in the upwards direction at the same angle as before. Then the engine will be fixed to the top dead centre on the stroke compression. Even after this if the timing marks on the cam sprockets do not align you need to know the timing is out and will need resetting.

How To Tell If Atv Jumped Time

  1. The timing chain present which is important in off-road vehicles.


The other less technical process for checking if the ATV jumped time

A less complicated process is there by which you can be sure if your all-terrain vehicle jumped time or not. The steps from the very beginning are mentioned here:

  • You need to first stand the vehicle in a proper shade and pull the emergency brake. Check the battery if it’s having proper charge or not. The battery needs to be in perfect form for this testing. Then try to start the vehicle slowly and note the time the vehicles to properly start and then check if it’s the same as other times or not. If the atv is jumping time then the starting of the vehicle would be dragged and much slower. Due to the jumping of teeth by the chain, this occurs.
  • When the engine is idle check for any strange and uncommon noises around the timing chain cover. If the chain had jumped teeth then there would be rattling noises when the engine is idle or having a dry start. There might also be slight noises of scraping and hissing. The chains portions which have been stripped off get struck in the cover of the chain and create such noises.
  • When the atv would jump time there would be instances of backfire many times. You need to slowly drive the atv and change the speed at a restricted pace. By this, you would be able to detect the backfiring. The worn sprockets or worn out chain guide rails can be the reason these backfires. The sheared flywheel key can also make the atv jump time with backfiring symptoms.
  • When the vehicle is standing idle you also need to identify the timing marks on the ride. These marks can be found on the crankshaft. The marks are also present in the metal holding present above the crankshaft which remains connected to the engine block. Often with time a lot of dirt, oil or sand will get deposited on these markings which you need to clean up properly. Then you need to mark on the pulley and even on the block scale. After this, the engine needs to be started by the timing light being hooked to the number one cylinder.
  • If the marks of the timing do not reach close to the alignment or balance properly then you can finally know that the atv has jumped time. Many times there won’t be any alignments noticeable at all.



First, be sure if your atv is jumping time or not is going to be difficult if you don’t know the ways. After being sure that the atv has jumped time you need to retire the components so that every essential part of the vehicle can run in full synchronization.


Running more than one check to be sure of time jumping is required so that you don’t a small valve problem with a much bigger problem. Do not ignore the indications which the vehicle would give out when the atv will jumping time.


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