The coming of winter brings along many issues for bikers. Because taking care of your motorcycle during the colder months of the year is crucial, we have put together a list of tips and tricks related to how you can protect your bike during this season.
Pay extra attention to the battery
As we all know, batteries usually have a hard time during the winter because the low temperatures tend to slow down the chemical reactions that are going on inside them. Consequently, to keep up with the demand, more current is needed to be produced. If you have a garage that features a power supply, it is indicated that you charge the battery overnight.
If you don’t have this possibility, make sure that your battery is regularly charged during the winter, especially if you also keep extra accessories such as bike alarms or heated clothes connected to it.
According to the specialists, it might also help if you apply grease to the terminals of the battery so that they are tight. This way, you can avoid salty water from getting in and, thus, shorting the circuits.
If you happen to have an automatic chain oiler, it is advisable that you turn up the flow a little bit so that sufficient ointment is applied.
If you do not own such a device, it is best that you add chain lubricants weekly. Whenever you do so, it is not indicated that you use too much product at once. For best results, apply the lube after each ride, this way, the oils will move into the gaps easily.
Invest in a silicone spray
Although most bikes are designed to behave well in rainy environments, they cannot do a good job when it comes to dealing with the corrosion caused by salt. To help you deal with this problem during the winter, manufacturers have created special sprays that can protect your motorcycle from corrosion.
Silicone sprays are water-based, and they can be used to treat those hard-to-reach places on the bike that are difficult to protect from the damaging effects of salt. Once the water that these sprays contain evaporates, a protective silicone film is left on the surfaces.
However, one disadvantage of silicone sprays is that they tend to wash off easily. To prevent this, you have to reapply the spray often, especially in the cold season.
Grease the joints
Apart from adding ointment to the chain of your bike, fellow riders also advise that you grease all the moving parts of the vehicle. This way, you can avoid seizure. A good plan is to start applying grease on the handlebars of the bike. To do so, first remove the levers, clean them thoroughly and then apply the ointment before putting them back on.
Bare threads such as the wheel spindles and the gear lever tie rods should also be greased. Even more so, for extra protection, some recommend that you remove the fairing and panel screws and that you cover them in oils as well. Although the entire process might seem laborious, you won’t regret doing so later on.
Before you start, it is vital to remind you that this process is likely to make your ride prone to getting covered in dirt more easily.
Change the oil and the filter
If you want your prized possession to make it through the winter unharmed, you should also consider treating its engine with an oil and filter change. As you know, during winter, the engine is highly sensitive. Because it is affected by the cold temperatures, it might take a little longer to heat up.
The reason why an oil change is indicated has to do with the fact that oils contain a number of additives that have protective qualities. When using fresh oil that is dirt and metal particles-free, the engine will work quicker.
During winter, the water in your radiator is likely to freeze. To get rid of this issue, it might be a good idea to add antifreeze to the water inside the radiator. You can purchase a product of this type from numerous dealers.
What is more, no matter if you are a novice or a seasoned biker, draining and refilling the radiator system will undoubtedly be easy. To avoid the building of air-locks, it is advisable that you bleed the system during the refilling process. This way, the engine won’t overheat.
When it comes to the tires of your motorcycle, you should know that dedicated sports rubber is not suitable for winter. Whenever using your bike in temperatures that go below 10 degrees, you should switch to silica-based tires.
If you already own appropriate tires, before you put them on, take the time to assess their condition, especially when it comes to their thread depths. Also, because the weather fluctuates in this period of the year, be sure to check the tire pressure weekly.
Before you hit the road, it is best that you verify whether or not your lights work as expected, and make sure that they are not covered in dirt. Additionally, be sure to adjust the headlights so that both the main and the dip beam perform well.
If you want to make yourself even more visible to the other traffic participants, it might be a good idea to invest in extra lighting accessories. For instance, you can purchase LED indicators or even front fog lights, as many motorcycle-enthusiasts recommend them.
Keep your hands warm
If you hate the feeling of cold grips, it might be the optimum time to purchase a model that has heating elements. On top of that, keep in mind that there are units that have multi-levels of heat controls that can be operated via the bike’s electrical system.
If you don’t own a full helmet, and you need to protect your eyes, be sure to check out this article as it is packed with motorcycle eyewear reviews.