Now that the cold days are nigh, it is time to prepare your motorcycle for the onset of winter. The job is not as straightforward as putting your two-wheel ride in the garage and throwing a sheet over it. Without the knowledge to do this, you will end up doing several repairs come spring time.
If you get on your feet and prepare your motorbike properly, you will be rewarded with a still-functioning ride once the weather clears up. The following tips will help curb early deterioration from lack of use and storing it appropriately will also guarantee that its parts will operate effectively once you get back on the road.
Set the location up
Having a garage or a shed for your ride is always a plus. If you don’t, there are excellent motorcycle covers available in the market that you can check out. However, as much as possible, make sure that you stow your motorcycle indoors so other elements apart from weather disturbances won’t spoil it.
The best is to have a storage area that is not too humid and even better is a heated garage. Just a bit above freezing temperature would be a lot better than storing your bike during winter in a freezing cold area.
Stock up on fuel
Drop by at the fuel station and have them fill up its tank. A full tank means less corrosion for you to deal with.
Prepare for an oil change
Following the fuel supply and while the engine is still hot, it is advised that you give the motorcycle an oil change. Replacing the oil at this time will keep those bike parts in great condition until you replace the oil once more as the season clears up.
Since you are keeping busy with those tools, you can replace the bike’s oil filter as well. After the replacement procedures, rev up your motorcycle and allow the oil to permeate your ride’s whole system. The oil will act as a shield and help protect your ride from rust.
Add some fuel stabilizer
After the oil change, you can now check on the fuel. To prohibit the gas from going bad, it is advised that you mix in fuel stabilizer on your fuel. However, emptying the carburetor will depend on your riding scheds since petrol can transform into a gluey fluid if left unused for more than 4 months.
Thus, if you plan on not using your ride for an extended time, it is wise that you pump out the carburetor not unless you want tacky, bunged-up jets on your bike. The minute you have put the stabilizer in the mix, let the motorcycle rest for about 10 minutes to allow the stabilizer to work its magic on your ride’s petrol systems.
Lube it up
Once more, if you plan on extending your bike’s rest, you might take into account greasing its cylinder’s insides. In order to do this, you have to take away the spark plugs first then let stream a tiny amount of oil all over the holes.
To shift the crank, you must flip the engine over first to guarantee that the cylinder walls acquire its share of the oil. If it is not lubed up equally, there is a good chance that corrosion might occur on the walls. Following the grease job, wipe the plugs with a spray lubricant then put them back in place.
Give the exhaust pipe a grease job
Corroded exhaust pipes can be bothersome so in order to curb this, you can coat the pipe with a spray lubricant. Be careful while doing the job, especially at the rear part of the pipe; rub it well and make sure that you have lubed all areas of the component to stop moisture from forming.
Remove the battery
Extended storage of your motorcycle means you have to remove its battery as well. Even when your ride is switched off, it can still empty the battery of its juice. Take away the battery and clean and lube the terminals as well.
During the winter period you could opt for a drip battery charger in order to keep your battery healthy and always full. Batteries don’t like to be completely empty and should be avoided at all times.
Wash it up before storing
Proper prep work for winter storage also includes the act of washing and waxing your bike. Following the rinse, dry your motorcycle out completely before lubing it once more. Once it’s completely dried, spray it with the spray lubricant, particularly on the bike’s metal parts.
Lube the frame, rims and the chain but leave the tires’ brake systems be.
Take care of the mufflers too
Mist the mufflers with the spray lubricant since it can rust as well. Pay attention to the drain holes and the muffler’s ends. Attach a plastic bag gently into every muffler opening’s ends so moisture won’t get trapped in there. After this, you can now cover every muffler with a plastic bag so moisture and insects won’t stay on it.
Check the tires for air
With your air pressure gauge on hand, inspect your ride’s front and rear tires with it. Take good notice if the tires are inflated as it should be to its full recommended pressure. To help keep the tires’ rubber away from the cold floor, you can put a half-inch piece of woodboard or cardboard under the tires.
If you have the time and space, you could move your bike half a yard each month in order not to have the same spot of the tired on the floor. If you leave your bike the whole winter in the same spot, you might get a flat section in the tire which is difficult to get rid off.
Get the motorcycle in position
Locate a prime spot for the motorcycle; it must be kept away from direct sunlight or windows. You can also avail of stands if you want to keep your motorcycle away from freezing concrete or any place that will get cold. Once you positioned your ride in its rightful hiding place, it is now time to cover it up.
Make sure that you invest on a good cover for your ride. Plain sheets or an old tarp just won’t cut it if you still want your motorcycle in prime condition come spring or summer. Sheets can take in moisture and with this, corrosion can develop from the metal parts of the motorbike.
A tarp can hinder the damp from getting inside but it can also hinder it from leaving. Corrosion can set in and destroy not only your ride’s appearance but its crucial parts as well. An excellent motorbike cover is produced from a permeable material that can resist mildew growth.
Riding a bike in the dead of winter may not be impossible, but it sure is dangerous so the best thing to do is store your motorcycle properly, wait the season out, and get on the road with your bike good as new.