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Owning a motorbike is a dream-come-true for many. Beyond genuine passion, purchasing a motorbike is a major investment. If you are truly a bike lover, you know that it is not merely enough to buy a good bike; it also important to maintain one. Practising regular bike maintenance not only makes your bike last longer, it actually makes you understand the nuances of your bike better.
Fortunately, bike maintenance is not a gruelling task. With a few basic tricks and tips, you can optimize your bike experience—to the extent that your secondhand motorbike may work better than someone else’s firsthand one.
Here is a list of some motorbike maintenance techniques, and some accessories that are essential for any motorcyclist:
Changing the engine oil
One of the most important things you can do to increase the road-life of your bike is to change the engine oil regularly. The gears of your bike need to cool down sufficiently, and it isn’t always possible if you motorbike long routes, or have a hectic job on your motorcycle. But one way of regulating the temperature is to keep changing your engine oil. This keeps your engine and gears lubricated, which in turn, ensures that both worth smoothly and last longer. Usually, there is a recommended schedule for how frequently you should be changing the oil, which varies from bike to bike. Find out yours from the handbook you received with your bike.
Changing the spark plugs
Similarly, a part that gets less attention, but should be changed regularly is spark plugs. The spark plug is what causes the spark that ignites and switches on your bike. Most owners are not very regular with this change, but failing to do this can cause hold ups and problems when you least expect it. Check your motorbike handbook to see how frequently this should be changed. If applicable to your bike, you can use the upgraded iridium spark plug, which can give 16000 km more to your bike.
Cleaning your bike
Regardless of how frequently you take out your motorbike, the one part of motorbike maintenance that you cannot skip is motorbike cleaning. There are comprehensive steps to effective cleanliness. Among the most important things you have to remember is to avoid heat while washing down your bike. Do not do it outside on a hot day or just after a motorcycling journey. You can use a jack or lift for effective cleaning without giving pain to your neck. Also, instead of using scrap cloth, use a soft cloth cleaner to prevent scratches on the body of your bike.
Waxing Your Bike
Another important step for motorbike maintenance is waxing your bike. There are specifications as to how to best wax your bike. Ideally, you should follow up every cleaning session with waxing your motorcycle. Not only does it give your bike a good, shiny finish, it actually ensures that your bike is well-protected from bad weather, dirt and dust.
Checking your tires
While cleaning your bike weekly, another thing you should do is check your tires to see whether the air pressure is within the recommended range. If the tire is under-inflated, it is likely to produce a lot of heat, causing your bike tire to wear out. If you find that the tread depth of your bike is down by 1 to 2 mm, it is a good time to change your tires.
Keeping your bike chain lubricated
Your bike chain has an important job: it transfers power from the engine to the rear wheel. Obviously, the movement of the chain means that a lot of heat and power is generated. To negate the heat generated (and consequently, damage caused), keep the bike chain lubricated. A well-lubricated bike chain can last for as long as 48000 km. Another important thing you can do to make the chain last longer is to purchase a chain guard. This valuable accessory protects your chain from wear and tear and protects your limbs in an accident.
Investing in a Bash Plate
Beyond regular maintenance of your bike, there are some measures you can take to ensure your bike against damage. It is quite common that in an accident, the internal systems of your bike collapse or get destroyed. By providing some extraskeletal and body support to your bike, you can prevent this from happening. Bash plates protect your engines and its internal parts from getting damaged. This extra buffer means that your bike is less likely to need massive repairs in an accident. Installing accessories like the bash plate is an important part of maintaining your bike.
Stopping while riding
Many riders tend to tip the limits of riding while on an open road. While your bike may be able to ride the stairway to heaven, ultimately, you will have to brake and stop to make way for someone else... These stops tend to be sudden, putting unnatural pressure on the brakes. Beyond possible accidents, this pressure can cost your system, especially if you do not regularly change the braking fluid.
Aligning your bike properly
For most motorcyclists, the daily road is peppered with unexpected speed breakers, potholes, and may be slippery or unexpectedly rocky. Bumping into this can throw your bike off unexpectedly and misalign the wheels of your bike. This makes steering difficult and increases the likelihood of an accident. To maintain your bike properly, take it to a mechanic once a month to have them check this.
Maintenance on your battery
One of the major reasons why motorcycles fail to run is because their batteries are not properly cared for. There are some ways in which you can check whether your battery needs attention. Ideally, you should check the battery once a month. To ensure the fluid working of your battery, clean its exhaust pipes, maintain its electrolyte levels, clean any dirt or grime that may have collected on it. You should also regularly charge the battery of your motorcycle, even if you use your motorcycle infrequently.
Motorcycling is one of the most thrilling, yet challenging things to do in the world. Maintaining the upkeep of your bike can ease the process, even honing your expertise as a rider. It is finally up to you to ensure that your biking experience is smooth. Motorbike maintenance may not be the best parts of riding a bike. But it is these easy parts that ensure that you have the time of your life on your bike.
Ashley is a former journalist who quit her job to pursue her wanderlust and meet new people around the globe. She always prioritizes motorcycle trips. She tries to pen down her entire travelling experience and has been a constant contributor to bboffroad.com.au
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