During the colder seasons, it isn’t always practical (or safe) to take your motorcycle out on the open roads and a time may come when you store your bike away for a period of weeks or months.
Here at Asgard we like to make sure your motorbikes are safe and secure, just as they would be inside one of our storage units and in this blog post, we’re here to offer some advice. After all, taking care of your motorcycle when you’re not riding it, is just as important as when you are.
As a keen biker, you’ll know there’s nothing worse than pulling the dust sheets off your dearly loved road beast, only to find flat tyres, fluid that’s turned into a sticky paste and a weird smell of smoke coming from the exhaust. If you want to avoid paying the price of a few months neglect, here are seven tips on how to store your motorbike during the winter period.
- 1. Fuel
After you’ve filled up the tank with fuel, you should add the recommended measure of fuel stabiliser to keep the petrol from depreciating, leaving a brown layer of dirt on your carburettors parts. Switch on the beast and let it run for a few minutes so the fuel that has been treated with stabiliser can run through.
- 2. Fluids
You need to check your brakes, clutch and coolants and if necessary replace anything that needs replacing. It is important to remember to use the type and the amount of fluid recommended by the motorcycle manufacturer. Another thing you can do is drain all of your motorbikes fluids and then refill them when you want to take your bike out again.
You should also use anti-freeze to prevent the engine freezing up, as well as lube up the throttle, kickstand, shifter and clutch cables.
- 3. Oil
When an engine runs, over time the oil that flows through it will transition from a clean, golden fluid to a dirty black gunk. Oil that has been contaminated can corrode parts of the engine and cause serious damage when left for a few months.
- 4. Battery
A good few newer motorcycles experience battery drain, even when the ignition is off so that things like your clock and radio settings are kept up to date.
One option is to remove the battery from your bike and trickle charge it all winter. This is a fully charged battery under no-load at a rate equal to its self-discharge rate, thus enabling the battery to remain at its fully charged level.
Alternatively, if you do choose to leave the battery in, make sure you charge it at least once a month.
- 5. Tyres
Storing your bike with its tyres off the ground can help reduce the chances if your tyre getting a flat spot or uneven wear. If you don’t have anywhere to raise your bike off the ground, you could fill your tyres to the maximum recommended volume and then rotate the front and the back tyre on its centre stand, a week at a time.
- 6. Rust
Moisture from condensation can build up on the surface of your motorcycle and cause rust. Washing your bike thoroughly and then waxing it before putting it away for winter can help to prevent corrosion and other damage.
Use WD-40 to spray your exhaust pipes in order to keep the rust away from this part of your motorcycle. A step further would be to stuff something like a towel into the exhaust to keep out bugs, animals and water.
- 7. Fading
If you have a window in your garage, sunlight can get in and fade the paintwork or the leather on your bike. To avoid any unnecessary fading, make sure you park the bike in a cool dark corner of garage or storage unit. Of course, if you had an Asgard motorcycle garage, you wouldn’t have this problem at all.