You don’t have to be a motorcycle mechanic to handle simple maintenance procedures on your motorcycle. You only need a few tools and common knowledge. Here are some of the do it yourself maintenance tasks that can help keep your motorcycle running well for a long time.
Unless you’re too busy to do it, wash your motorcycle after use, especially during winter. It helps to keep it looking new and helps get rid of corrosive salts encountered on the roads. Regular cleaning allows you to identify any mechanical issues.
Use a quality bike shampoo with plenty of water for cleaning. Don’t use washing-up liquid because of its corrosive nature. Use a dedicated chain cleaner for cleaning the chains. To avoid corrosion, especially during winter, apply a good dosage of an anti-corrosion spray.
You can use a quality pressure gauge to check the pressures of the tires. Use the manual to determine the correct pressure. Under-inflated tires affect braking and handling as the tire walls lack the needed firmness to cope with the forces on it. Over-inflation affects the grip as the size of the contact patch on the road is reduced. It’s advisable to always check the pressure when it’s cold.
Batteries are often overlooked during routine maintenance. However, this should not be the case as they are instrumental to the functionality of the motorcycle. A discharged battery calls for a replacement but routine checks can help.
Before undertaking any work, remove the battery from its holder and place it on a level surface to check the acid levels. If the levels are low, top-up with the de-ionized water before charging the battery using a motorcycle or car charger. Avoid overfilling as the excess acid can overflow while on the move.
You don’t need to change your motorcycle’s spark plugs regularly. Check the mileage and the manual to know when it’s due. It can take only a few minutes to change them. The manual will also help to determine the correct plugs for your motorcycle. The code number differ from one manufacturer to the next.
To avoid mixing up the HT lead, remove one plug at a time. Also, avoid over-tightening them. Use your hands to screw and nip them up a quarter-turn using a plug wrench.
These tips will help keep your motorcycle’s performance at its best. You will avoid the high costs associated with repairing major mechanical issues as you’ll identify them early enough to solve any issues.