In Ontario, we are getting used to seeing only two seasons. Summer and winter there is no in between. It’s common to hear many seasoned riders say they no longer winterize their bike. As temperatures fluctuate from -20 Celsius to plus 10 Celsius, avid riders are encouraged to keep their bikes available for quick spins through the winter months. If you do winterize your bike here are a few pointers.
- The first place to start is by protecting the life of your battery. It is a good idea to either fully remove your battery and keep it in a warm dry place or purchase yourself a Battery Tender. The idea is to keep the battery holding a charge. If your battery sits for long periods of time, mix in cold weather, do not be surprised when it can no longer hold a charge.
- Second you can look to stabilize your fuel. It is recommended that you fill your tank before storage and leave room to add a fuel stabilization mix. The idea here is make sure gas is preserved as over long periods of inactivity the most volatile parts of fuel can evaporate leaving you with incombustible fuel (Bad gas). Not filling your tank with gas over winter will allow water vaper to collect inside the tank leading to bad gas as well as a laundry list of other issues. Fill your tanks people.
- Third make sure to provide your chain and even cables with lube. Throughout the season a bikes chain should be lubricated. Before putting the bike away give the chain some more love. There are common products that can be used and they come with handy applicators. Checkout your nearest shop or ask some riding buddies in your area of where to look.
- Fourth, winter is a good time to have oil and coolant changed. Depending on how much riding the bike goes through this could be the only oil change of the season or 1 of many. Get rid of old broken-down oil and replace it. Some people prefer to wait till the beginning of next year’s season to change the oil and have it fresh from the start. End of season or beginning just make sure to get it done. The idea is the same with coolant, make sure it is fresh.
- Fifth on the list would be to have your bike elevated so that the wheels are off the ground. Having the wheels sit over the winter can lead to flat spots and cost you a tire change come spring. Keeping the weight of the bike off the tires is very easy preventative maintenance step.
- Sixth depending on location of storage, it can never hurt to cover or fill your exhaust with a plug or rags. Keep rodents out and keep the bike starting easily come spring. It can be frustrating to have a bike looked over by a mechanic only to find out a nest has been built in your exhaust and that is the reason you are spending money to get the bike started.
Thanks for passing by, stay tuned for future blog posts from your BOS family.