Have you been watching too much Sons of Anarchy and even decided to purchase a brand new motorcycle? If this is the case, make sure you are well prepared to be that bad boy during winter motorcycle riding. Proper maintenance of the motorcycle during winter months will make sure the bike performs smoothly when you are ready to get back on the road. You will also have a long lasting relationship with the machine. If you take care of it, you will be assured of a good ride, every time. Motorcycle storage and maintenance does not just mean cleaning your bike. It means storage and making it look presentable all the time.
Maintenance means everything. If you are out of space in the garage, you should consider using a self-storage facility. This is to make sure your baby is warm during the winter and fall. The best motorcycle storage space for your bike will be one that is dry, secure and away from windows. In that case, a self-storage unit is a combination of the three. In fact, self-storage units are the perfect options for motorcycle storage. This is because they offer drive-up access and additional protection measures that ensure maximum protection.
Most self-storage units have some requirements for storing any kind of vehicle, such as demonstrating that the vehicle is in running condition. But once you have found a perfect self-storage unit, you will have to do some prep work before putting it in for hibernation.
Motorcycle Storage Checklist
- Preserve the engine
No matter how long your motorcycle will be inactive, you should make sure it is ready for use in the future. It does not matter how many weeks or months the bike is idle, just ensure it is ready for use when the time comes to take is out.
First off, you need to change the engine oil and the filter. This will help to preserve the engine. Then, fill the gas up to full. (Do not overfill the gas) The correct amount is when the gas hits the bottom of the filler neck. Then use a fuel stabilizer to prevent dampness and moisture from building up when the tank is half empty.
- Prevent rusting and corrosion
Another important thing you need to prevent corrosion and rusting by keeping water out of the pipes. You can spray WD40 into the muffler ends, exhaust pipes, drain holes and all other metal surfaces. This will prevent rusting when the bike is not in use. Prevent additional moisture by installing plastic bags into muffler holes and then covering them with another plastic bag. You can also use wax to prevent any potential moisture.
- Protect the battery
You also need to protect the battery. Make sure you remove the battery from your motorcycle before putting it to storage. It should also be charged at least every two weeks. This will ensure it does not sulfate.
- Check fluids and tires
Make sure you change hydraulic clutch and the brake fluid if you have not done so for a long time. The fluids do absorb moisture and this may cause corrosion in the long run
You also need to check the tire pressure. Make sure the front and the rear tires are okay and are filled to the recommended pressure. You need to pump them up during the winter. This will keep them healthy and also prevent the rubber from freezing – if the rubber freezes, it will crack. Some people get worried about the ground freezing. If you are worried, use wood blocks to keep the bike tires elevated. Then, cover the motorcycle to keep the dust off. However, make sure there is no moisture trapped underneath since this will lead to corrosion.
- Inspect everything before your first spring ride
Well done, you have experienced great winter months and so has your bike. However, before you start speeding off into the warm sunset, make sure you do a detailed check of all the fluid levels and then assess anything potentially wrong with the motorcycle. Make sure you fill the tire pressures back to normal. Check the gears and accessories. Don’t forget to order a Throttle Rocker for your spring ride!