Let’s talk about motorcycle maintenance and how important it is for the overall performance as well as safety of your bike. Just like an automobile, bike owners need to keep up with regular maintenance for their bike and its many individual parts. That being said, a lot of routine maintenance can be done by you, the bike owner. However, if you are new to the motorcycle life or just aren’t quite sure how to exactly perform these maintenance procedures it is best to seek the help of a professional mechanic. The first thing to remember when going through our list of maintenance criteria is that every make & model of bike can differ. It is a good idea to study your owners guide and follow the advice of the manufacturer.
Routine Motorcycle Maintenance
- Engine Oil- Just like your car or truck, motorcycles run off their engine oil. It is usually suggested that an oil change is done every 4,000-6,000 miles but again this depends on the model of your bike. Regularly check oil levels and make sure to never put TOO MUCH oil. It is also recommended that you change your oil filter with every oil change as well to maintain optimal performance.
- Valve Adjustments- These adjustments can often be a BIG task and generally require the skill & help of a professional mechanic. Jim, a motorcycle mechanic, based out of a Phoenix Auto Repair shop stresses the importance of not letting this maintenance task go, not only for your safety but for the longevity of your bike.
- Tire Pressure- This should be monitored with the help of a tire pressure gauge. It is also advised to inspect tires visually for any wear and tear or other damage caused by nails & other debris that can be found on the road.
- Drive System- Bikes generally come with 3 different drive systems, Chain/Sprocket, Shaft Drive, and Belt Drives. The drive system connects the ear wheel to the engine through a shaft, chain or belt drive. Debris from the road as well as lubricants can cause wear and damage on your drive system. Sfat drives generally require the least amount of maintenance but their fluids still need to be topped off and checked periodically.
- Brake Fluid Line- this fluid line should be bled and changed at different intervals depending on what your bike is used for, For example, if you are performance focused the line should be bled and changed at least once a season. If you have a sports bike and are running it on the track the brake line should be bled and changed routinely!
- Coolant- Some bikes have an air cooled engine while others have a radiator. It is vital to your bike that you keep your coolant levels topped off and clean! Cooler engines make for a better running engine overall. If you live in a hotter climate, think Arizona summers, it is advised that you change your coolant AT LEAST once a season!
As always it is advised that you read up on your owner’s manual and check for manufacturer suggested maintenance schedules. The more love and care you put in to your bike the better it will perform for you and the longer it will last. Motorcycles have a bit of danger surrounding them so it is always best to maintain your bike to also provide the best safety for you and your passengers. If you are able to perform your own maintenance routines that is great, however if not seek out and establish a relationship with a trusted, experienced, and professional motorcycle mechanic!