Winterizing and Storing Your Motorcycle
It’s that time of the year and if you live in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Wisconsin, Maryland, Michigan, Maine, Vermont etc, you just got hit with a lot of snow. So unless you live in a tropical climate, winter means that it’s time to put away your motorcycle. Here are some tips for getting your baby ready for that long winter nap.
Clean your bike – Thoroughly wash, wax and detail your motorcycle. Use a corrosion protectant on fittings, rubber and plastic to preserve and prevent dry rot.
Change your engine oil – Engine oil is designed to hold water, and it can only hold so much of it. Constant temperature changes in the winter can result in condensation inside of your engine cases. Fresh oil will do a better job of protecting your engine by holding more water.
Check your tires – Properly inflate your tires and check the pressure periodically to prevent flat spots over the winter. Placing carpet remnants between your tires and concrete, and periodically moving the bike so that the tires are not always resting on the same spot, are also good ideas.
Fill the fuel tank and add fuel stabilizer – Filling the fuel tank will allow the least possible amount of condensation inside your tank, minimizing corrosion. Add a fuel stabilizer according to the portions listed on the packaging and keep your bike running for 3-4 minutes to allow the stabilizer to run through the system.
Inspect the battery cables, posts and fasteners – If necessary, clean the terminals with a stiff brush or battery cleaner spray. Ensure the cables and their housings are in good shape and the connectors are secured tightly to the battery. Test the starting and charging system monthly, and if you aren’t planning on riding for a while, invest in a bike-specific trickle charger with a monitoring feature to keep the battery in good operating condition
Cover the bike – A quality cover will prevent dust and other abrasive materials from damaging your bike. The cover must be breathable to keep out moisture and condensation that will cause corrosion.
Watch for Mice – Another thing to watch for is mouse damage. They want to stay safe and warm in the winter, too, and under the cover of your carefully cared for bike is just right.
Don’t start your bike unless you are going for a ride. Running your bike for just a few minutes takes away from the charge on the battery and heats the exhaust just enough to create some condensation as it cools.
When it is warm enough to take your bike out, be sure to go for a long ride and burn all the storage fuel before immediately re-filling the tank.
Follow these tips and your motorcycle will be ready to go at the first hint of spring.
At Russ Brown Motorcycle Attorneys® we know that winter months may mean a break from your bike. During this time, we want you to stay safe and keep your motorcycle as fit as possible. Follow these tips for storing your bike during the winter months and you will be ready to go in the spring. If you would like to learn more about BAM or our law firm, call us at 1-800-4-BIKERS.