Maintenance Mistake People Make In Winter
As you take care of yourself in this chilly season, make sure you take care of your motorcycle. Here is chock full of tips to help you to maintain your bike for the winter, and your sanity!
Not getting your oil changed - Normally, people wait until the beginning of the season to get an oil change for a vehicle. It seems like an ideal time to start. Waiting this long for an oil change can cause severe damage to the piston rings in your motor. Another problem that will occur is gray smoke coming out of your bike because of the oil leaking into the combustion chamber. (which totally spoils a ride by yourself or with a friend.) So, don't wait to get the oil changed! Go ahead and replace the oil now so you can enjoy a smooth, smoke-free ride later.
Not paying attention to that smoke coming out of your bike - This goes with the tip above. Piston rings help keeps bikes in motion. They also help seal in heat required for other parts within the engine to work. If you see a gray, thick smoke coming out of your bike, chances are there is a piston ring that might be damaged, or you need to get an oil change FAST. A slow repair for a big problem like this can mean no riding!
Not Storing Bike Properly – Leaving a bike within inclement weather will cause a ton of problems! Storing your bike in a warm garage is the perfect location. Sometimes it is just not feasible. Most garages are cold and drafty. Some people might not even have access to a garage. Don't reflect on the weather when you are covering your bike in a downpour. Instead, purchase a waterproof motorcycle cover to protect your bike and your assets! Then you won't have to worry so much about the next tip we are going to give to you.
Not Drying and Lubricating Bikes - When finishing a ride, especially when raining or snowing, it is essential to keep the bike dry and lubricated. Why? Because rust will develop on the bike. Rust is simply caused by oxygen and moisture when it is on something like iron or steel. Rust looks unpleasant and can cause problems, especially for your motorcycle chain, which is powered by your engine.
If the motorcycle chain is not maintained and lubricated, you might have to consider putting your ride off for a few days until it gets replaced. Usually, when getting an oil change, or at least three refills of gas later on your bike, this procedure is done. Under this circumstance, you can make an exception and lube the chain.
This procedure can take five minutes or less with a chain brush you can get from your local automotive parts store. Drying and lubing can certainly save you from a headache and heartache of not being able to ride later! Or worst, you would not want to have to put up a sign saying, "Honda Clone for Sale" because of rusting.
Not Checking Your Tires for... - Tires on a motorcycle is essential to riding safely and keeping others around you safe. Check for these three things when going out on the road this winter:
...Tire Pressure - During colder months, motorcycles tires tend to deflate. If there is a change in the temperature from ten degrees (more or less), then the tires can deflate. Be sure to check your tire pressure before and after a ride. Using a tire pressure gauge will prevent your tires from being damaged and will give you more life out of the use of your wheels.
...Tires with Traction - Those grooves in your tires helps you to be able to control your bike from NOT sliding in another direction. It also helps prevent you from hydroplaning and sliding on ice. These situations can still occur if you have traction on your tires, but it will lessen your risk of having an accident. If tires have no traction, then there is a higher chance that a tire blowout can occur. Rolling over a sharp object can happen anywhere, so don't compromise your safety if you need your tires replaced. You can also tell if your tires need to be replaced by checking on the warranty of your tires.
...Inner Tube to your Tire - Yes, the inside life of your tire can get damaged from a puncture from a previous flat, or they can be damaged due to being exposed to moisture and causing cracking in the innertube. If an innertube is not secure, then it will leak air and won't keep the air in your tires. Be sure to ask for the innertube to be changed when having your tires changed.