Even if you fully winterized your motorcycle back in November, taking it out for spring involves some degree of maintenance.
As the weather warms up and you consider going for a ride, check your bike first using the following points:
The Basics: Each motorcycle has unique maintenance requirements, so before taking your vehicle out, read through its manual for specifics.
Fuel: If your bike was winterized, it should’ve been fully drained of fuel or had a fuel stabilizer added. In this scenario, it’s best to inspect the interior for signs of rust, buildup, or condensation first, and after addressing them, refill it using high octane fuel. Keep in mind that old fuel, which likely saw its chemical composition change over the winter months, should never be put in your motorcycle.
The Battery: When a bike goes into storage, it’s recommended to keep it on a trickle or “smart” charger, which turns off to prevent overcharging. However, if you let the battery drain during the winter season, charge it up fully in spring. As well, check the fluid levels and top off any low cells. On the other hand, if nothing happens, you may need to order a new battery before getting on the road.
Tires: There’s a good chance the tires’ pressure dropped from the cold, so check for this and add air. As well, because of how weight is distributed, the surface may display signs of wear and tear – flat spots, bulges, or punctures. Either have these issues addressed or replace any tires that appear too worn.
Oil, Fluids, and Filter: If none of these were changed for winter, do so immediately for spring. In the process, check the system’s hose connections for cracks and leakage, and add brake fluid and coolant.
Fuel System: For this facet, too, replace the fuel filter, and as you do, check the tank, lines, and fittings for cracks and leaks.
Brakes: Spring’s the time to make sure your brakes are ready for the road. As you check this part of your vehicle, look at the pads and discs, including cleaning the rotors and lubricating the front-brake hand lever and throttle cables.
Check the Design: Don’t miss the forest for the trees, here, and before you head out, give your vehicle’s frame and fairing an overall review for cracks and loose parts. In general, if you feel or hear something moving around – a possibility with the steering wheel, nuts, and fasteners – tighten it. In the process, too, test the electrical system and lubricate any bearings.
After you’ve gone through this checklist and your vehicle’s ready, it’s advised to turn it on and let it run for a few minutes. This allows the fluids to circulate, while you can notice if the bike idles smoothly at the correct RPM.
Even after your ride’s ready and you observe the rules of the road, accidents may still happen. Rather than haggle with the insurance company, work toward fair compensation with Trantolo & Trantolo’s team of experienced motorcycle lawyers.