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Biking Tips

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In the winter months, your bike tends to be in a state of hibernation. It might’ve been stored away in a safe and dry place, waiting for the sun to shine. When spring arrives it’s time to open the garage and get riding again. But before you do, it’s worth performing a few checks to make sure your bike is ready for the road. Here is our guide on how to prepare your bike for the spring months.

Tyres

 

Even if your bike has been locked in the garage for months, you should check your tyres to make sure they are fully inflated. As the bike has been sitting in one place all winter, the tyres may be low in terms of pressure. Replace the rubber if it’s damaged or worn down.

Oil and brake fluids

 

The last thing you want when you’re riding is to find that the oil is running low. As the bike has been stationary for an extended period of time, the fluid will have absorbed moisture, making the brakes feel spongy. Be sure to carry out a thorough check and clean out any blemishes you find on the brake discs. In some cases, changing the brake fluid and pads may be required.

Steering and suspension

 

Check the suspension and steering for excessive wear to ensure the bike can be ridden properly. If you find any looseness in the steering head then tighten it up. This can be done by grabbing the head and trying to move the fork bottoms.

Coolant

 

If your bike is liquid cooled, check the coolant levels. When the engine is cold remove the radiator cap and make sure the level is above the minimum amount. Cleaning the area is also recommended because dirty coolant can clog up channels.

Electrics

 

After the tyres, fluids and suspension have been checked, it’s time to inspect the electrics. These include the indicators, headlamp, brake lights and horn. If there are any faulty bulbs then replace them immediately.

Spring Cleaning

 

When all the necessary checks have been performed, you have the opportunity to give your bike a spring clean. Give it a thorough wash to remove any surface grime that might have built up over the winter. Finish off by adding a coat of wax to keep the paint looking glossy in the sun shine.

Check yourself

 

With all the work on the bike it can be easy to forget about yourself. Dust off your riding gear and make sure it’s clean and ready for the first ride. It’s advisable to start off with a gentle ride, especially if you’ve been out of the saddle for a few months.

 

No matter what kind of bike you own, getting the right kind of insurance is a good way of protecting your beloved roadster. We offer policies that cover a range of bikes, including classic and off road.

Inside Bikes writer Bradley Johnson talks about his experiences of fitting modern electrical systems. Many classic motorbike restorers say “I can do the mechanical stuff but not electrics, I just don’t understand it.” But if you use this guide and have a go at completely renewing the electrical system on your old bike, then you will soon realise just how simple it really is.

 

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