If you’re not going to be riding your bike this winter, you need to take a few simple steps to protect your machine while she sleeps! The Crew at BikeHQ.co.uk along with some proper help from some serious figures from the motorcycle industry have listed the essential top tips for protecting your bike through hibernation:
First things first – give her a good wash, get all that grit and salt off her. Dry her and then begin.
Battery – They don’t last very long, especially if you’ve an alarm fitted. This is what the ‘Optimate Auto Battery Charger’ was designed for. You can leave it wired to the battery and plugged in all winter and it sorts it out. You can pick these up for about £25 second hand on ebay or about £40 new. It’s also worth spraying a little WD40 on the terminals – just to keep any moisture away.
Wiring – Unless you keep your bike in the house! Damp is present, even in the best garage, so its worth taking a few minuets to get the faring off and spraying a little WD40, my favourite product if you haven’t of guessed, on the electrical connectors – not to much though.
Engine & Frame – While you’ve got the fairing off, It’s worth giving the motor and frame a liberal coat of – you guessed it – WD40! Not only does WD40 dispel any damp and moisture it will also protect the exposed metal, including bolt heads, springs, rubber seals etc over the winter. There are also lots of oil based sprays that can be used to give everything a good coat. Take a few mins to have a look around, apply a small amount of grease to the end of the clutch cable, and fairing fasteners, check the fluid and oil levels.
Chain – Check the condition of the chain and sprockets. If they need replacing, you could ask Santa! Adjust the chain and apply and good helping of light gear oil – don’t use out-of-the-can chain lube, as it’s ok when riding as it doesn’t spit off, but it compromises lubrication.
Fuel – If you can’t be bothered to drain the tank – which doesn’t take long - leave the tank fairly full and drain the carbs, if your bike still has them! The fuel will probably be little stale come spring but it’s a good excuse to use that tank then ad some injector/carb cleaner and do another one.
Watch out for the ‘How to wake her from her sleep’ guide coming out in the spring.