Winter may be tough on your motorbike, but that shouldn't stop you from getting out for a ride. You and your bike can handle whatever winter throws at you with proper care and maintenance.
Here are the top motorcycle maintenance tips for the winter season.
Check the battery condition
Cold starts, thick engine oil, and the use of extra electrics place a lot of strain on the battery in the winter hence you should check the battery on a regular basis. Check the voltage first; a good bike battery should have a voltage of more than 12.6 volts. Lubricate the terminals and double-check that everything is tight and dirt-free. If your battery is low, make sure it's completely charged before your next ride and check the voltage. Consider replacing it if it is fast draining.
Check the tires
Before and after each ride, check your tires for damage, wear, and pressure. During the winter months, the pressure can drop by as much as two psi for every 10 degrees’ Celsius drop in temperature, so check before going out.
You should also consider replacing your bike's tires with winter-ready rubber, which will provide greater grip and handling in wet and snowy conditions.
Use high-quality antifreeze/coolant
If you live in high altitude area or travelling to a hill station, fill the cooling system on your bike with high-quality, winter-ready coolant/antifreeze. Antifreeze has a low freezing point that prevents the freezing in the system when parked outside. Never use water as a coolant or antifreeze, and make sure the level is constantly full throughout the winter.
Lubricate moving parts
In the winter, dirt, moisture, oil, salt, and ice can cause problems on your bike's controls, so lubricate all moving components regularly to maintain them in good working order. This includes the pedals, brakes, chain and throttle control among others.
Change the oil and filter
Since starting your bike on a cold morning puts a lot of strain on the engine, you will need good engine oil to keep the moving components of engine lubricated and protected. To fully protect the engine before winter arrives, we recommend replacing the oil and filter.
Keep your bike inside
Keeping your bike inside reduces the impact of cold weather on the battery and cooling system, as well as prevents moving parts from stopping. A secure shed is the best solution if you don't have access to a garage. If you can't store your bike inside, buy a high-quality motorcycle cover to keep your machine safe from the weather.
Protect from corrosion
The metal on your bike tends to absorb moisture over time, especially during the winter. Moisture is a concern because it creates the ideal condition for rust to attack your motorcycle. Washing, drying, and waxing your bike can preserve it from damage and ensure that it retains its shine even in the cold. To get the best protection, use it after washing your bike regularly to avoid sealing in the dirt. You may also use the anti-rust spray to protect the places you think are vulnerable.