The cold nights are setting in and there are already signs of Christmas decorations, this can only mean winter is fast approaching! If you are tucking your bike in for the next few months, you’ll want it to reappear in the best possible condition.
Bike Trader, We Buy Any Bike have listed some Top Tips to make sure your bike is ready for hibernation.
5 Top Tips when preparing your motorbike for winter:
1. Drain Tank
One of the biggest concerns when putting your bike into storage is the fuel. If it is left for more than 6 or 7 months the fuel can cause a few problems, it can go stale in the tank and create oxidisation. If this starts the fuel can go like glue, affecting the whole engine by creating blockages throughout and potential leaks.
There are two options here, either completely drains your bike of fuel (including your carburettor /throttle body) and leave it bone dry, or use a fuel stabiliser.
2. Service and Trickle Charge
It’s a good idea to service your motorbike before putting it away, this might highlight any issues you haven’t previously spotted and also give you peace of mind that you shouldn’t need to (hopefully) fix anything straight away when leaving winter.
Batteries have a tendency of withering in winter, if you keep your bike in a garage and have access to power we’d suggest getting it hooked up. Some things on your bike will slowly but surely drain your battery such as alarms, immobilisers and so on. If you don’t fancy a trickle charge another option is to simply disconnect the battery and bring it to the inside. Of course, you’d need to give it a good charge before taking it out on the road again!
3. Washing and Lubrication
Your bike is under constant attack from the elements..road grit, salt, rain and so on. When you put your bike into storage. Make sure these things are washed off and can’t eat away at the components. Any dirt left on the bike could cause problems. Especially on the bodywork, frame, wheels and shock… After washing your bike thoroughly. It’s important to follow up with a good dry off, leaving as little moisture as possible.
Once it’s clean get to work on the lubricant! The chain and sprockets take a lot of hammers so need regular lubrication. But when your bike is facing storage buy some heavy duty lubricant to help stop oxidisation.
Tyres are often forgotten when storing motorbikes; however, the freezing cold temperatures of the concrete can really affect the rubber performance. It’s advised to put your bike on paddocks stands, so it’s lifted off the floor. Another option is to roll the bike a quarter turn every few weeks to change the pressure point.
5. Brake Discs
If you’re leaving your bike in the garage, its likely things are slightly damp in there. Make sure you give your brake discs some attention. If left the pads can actually become seized to the disc which is not ideal! When your bike is stood for a long time. It’s best to slip a piece of paper between the discs and pads to separate the materials.