It’s a weird thing, but many riders don’t mind the hassle of getting their bike ready for the riding season nearly as much as they do when getting ready to store their bike for the winter! When spring rolls around and you have to get your bike ready for another riding season it’s just one of those tasks that you actually enjoy. The anticipation is almost too much to stand!
One of the first things you should do is read over your owners manual to refresh your memory on some of the maintenance issues you will have to deal with after a long winter in storage. Every bike is unique and you want to address the things specific to your make and model.
Here is a quick list of things that will need to be checked out for most models, this can be a great starting point:
1. Make sure the battery and the terminals are in good condition. You can use baking soda and water to clean off the terminals if they have a lot of corrosion. Charge and install the battery or buy a new one if needed.
2. Check the oil and all lubricant levels. Top up when necessary. Depending on the last time you changed our oil, now may be a great time to do that too.
3. Inspect all cables and treat with whatever product your owners manual recommends. If any cables are damaged either replace them yourself or take your bike into the shop and have them do it for you.
4. Check tires for excessive wear and replace if necessary. Also check air pressure and add air if necessary.
5. Check all lights and replace any broken lights or burned out bulbs.
6. Check out brake pads and shoes for wear and replace as necessary.
8. Inspect the drive belt, chain or shaft and repair as necessary.
9. Clean your motorcycle helmet, inside and out.
10. Thoroughly clean and polish your motorcycle and all the chrome.
11. Make note of your mileage.
12. The last step is to take your bike out for a ‘practice’ spin. Sure, I know you’re an experienced rider but the truth is that we all get a little rusty when we haven’t done something for a while so taking your bike out for it’s ‘maiden voyage’ in the spring will be a good way for both you and your bike to get into the swing of things. A short jaunt is all you need and it will help you find out if you’ve missed anything on your maintenance inspection.
Have fun and enjoy your riding season!