Sad, but true, it’s that time again… time to winterize your motorcycle. As difficult as it may be to even consider putting your bike away during the harsh months to come, it is a must in order to keep it safe. Those living in harsher climates especially need to take special precautions to ensure that their bike stays in shape for riding once the weather breaks and spring returns.
To keep your motorcycle in tip-top running shape, figure on taking at least one full day to get it prepared for storage. Follow these simple tips to help protect your motorcycle this winter, so it’ll be ready to hit the road again come spring:
-Change the Oil and lubricate all moving parts.
-Purge The Carbs, always remembering to add gasoline stabilizer to the tank before storing.
-Wash and dry your bike thoroughly before storage. A leaf blower works great in frying off excess water.
-Check your belt drive for any signs of wear and tear at the end of each riding season.
-Wax all painted areas and the frame to keep moisture from causing problems over the winter months.
-Clean and polish all chrome parts and rims with a coat of chrome polish or silicone lube.
-Adjust and lubricate your drive chain.
-Take special care of your battery by removing it for the winter months. Always clean the terminal and check the fluids (adding more when needed). Store on a wooden plank only – never concrete!
-To keep unwanted guests from setting up housecleaning in your exhaust pipes, be sure to stuff a rag in the end or cover with a plastic bag. Always REMOVE prior to starting up your bike in the spring!
-Keep your bike covered when stored with a good quality motorcycle cover or cotton bed sheet.
-Remove all removable equipment and store in a relatively warm place (oil dipstick, temperature gauge, etc.
-Leave a note for yourself to remind you of any parts that need replaced or rechecked or maintenance that will be required before heading out on the open road once again.
Motorcycles may seem like big strong machines that need little tender loving care, but the truth is a motorcycle needs a lot of attention in order to ensure that it rides safely and stays problem free for years to come. Those living in warmer climates may be able to forgoes the storage tips listed here, but those living in the colder climates of the Northeast and Northwest mountains should take the time to carefully prepare their bikes for the winter season.