While the summer season is great for enjoying the sun and warmth on your motorcycle, cold winters are just not motorcycle friendly. If you want to protect your bike from damage and reduce the chances of needing costly motorcycle repairs in the spring, you need to be attentive to how you prepare that bike for winter storage. Here are a few tips to help you get your bike ready and reduce the chances of storage-related problems over the winter.
Schedule A Full Tune-Up
Before you put the bike up for the season, it's often in your best interest to bring it in for a complete tune-up. If you assume that you can just put the bike up without a tune up, you may find yourself with a bike that won't start when the weather warms up.
The tune-up process includes a full evaluation of the bike, including an inspection of the wiring, the battery, the chain and suspension components and more. It also typically includes complete fluid changes.
A full oil and filter change is important before storage because it flushes out any particles that may have settled in the oil pan and the filter. Oil can be contaminated by many things, including dirt particles, metal shavings and more. If you don't flush the oil pan and replace the oil and filter before you put the bike up for storage, those particles may settle into the oil pan and stick.
Another important part of that tune-up process is replacement of the plugs, wires and air filter. Dirty air filters can hinder the flow of air to the engine. By installing a new air filter and then sealing the air box, you'll ensure that there's no dirt or debris inside that could draw rodents. The new plugs and wires help ensure that the engine can respond with sufficient spark in the spring. Finally, the technician will lubricate everything to help add some protection against corrosion and seizing.
Invest In A Service Stand
When you put a motorcycle up for storage, sitting for long periods and being exposed to cold temperatures can be damaging to the tires. With the weight of the bike on the tires and the temperature fluctuations, your tires may lose air pressure. The longer the bike sits on the tires that way, the greater your risk of tire damage.
The best way to ensure that your bike tires come out of storage in the same condition they went in is to invest in a service stand. Motorcycle service stands support the bike frame and keep the tires off the ground. This ensures that any loss of air pressure that does happen isn't going to cause damage to the rims or the tire rubber.
Treat the Fuel With Stabilizer
Any time you put your bike up for an extended period (such as through the winter), you'll want to make sure that the fuel tank is full. Any space in the tank provides room to allow condensation to form in the fuel tank, which can contaminate the fuel in the tank and cause long-term damage. Instead, fill the fuel tank completely with a non-ethanol fuel, then add a fuel stabilizer product to keep the fuel from gumming up in the lines. Once you add the stabilizer, run the bike on idle for several minutes to allow that stabilizer to reach the entire fuel system.
Storing your motorcycle for the winter is a great way to keep it safe when the weather isn't conducive to riding. With the tips here, you'll be able to put your bike in storage without the risk of expensive repairs due to poor preparation.
If your motorcycle needs any repairs before going into storage, contact a company like Monarch Honda.