Checked over and ready to ride

It’s March, thoughts are turning to spring, warmer weather and getting your motorbike back on the road.

For some it will be their first outing since October and it’s important to check your bike over to make sure it hasn’t suffered, is safe to ride and fit for the road.

And, before you jump on your bike and roar off, also remember that your riding might need a little fine tuning too after the winter lay-off.

The amount of work your bike needs to get it ready for the road again will depend on how you prepared it winter.

Here is a simple checklist for your bike.

  • Make sure the battery is charged.
  • Check your insurance, tax and, if necessary, MOT are still valid. If you SORNed your bike with the DVLA when you took it off the road, remember to tax it again.
  • Inspect the condition of the tyres, looking for cracks, bulges, flat spots, uneven wear and tread depth. Check the pressures and adjust if necessary.
  • Check the condition of the chain. Clean, lubricate and adjust as necessary.
  • Make sure all the lights work and are clean.
  • Check the brakes are not seized or rubbing. Minor corrosion will wear off but use a recommended cleaner if the brakes are dirty or rusty.
  • Make sure all the electrics work – it’s not unknown for mice to nest in, and nibble, wiring looms over winter.
  • Check fluid levels and look for leaks.
  • Make sure controls operate smoothly.
  • Change the oil and have your bike serviced if needed. Once you have done the checks above you can ride your bike to us for maintenance but we can also collect it from your home and deliver it back.

Director Rob Walters said: “The state of your bike after winter depends on the condition you put it away in. If it went away all clean and lubricated then it will be a much easier job returning it to the road.

“Mud is good protection on a lot of ancient burial sites but not for modern motorbikes!

“It’s all about giving your bike a thorough, extended health check before riding it again.

“They’re the things you should be checking regularly as some things will have deteriorated over the winter.

“We do see bikes where mice have been chewing things and you might not know about it until you come to use something and it doesn’t work.”