It's time to winterize your bike or scooter!
With the approach winter, you might be thinking about letting your cycle or scooter hibernate for a few months. Even if you aren't planning to give up riding till spring, time has a tendency to slip away, and you may discover that your cycle or scooter has been waiting patiently for too long. Here are a few tips to make sure your ride is ready to go when you are:
Keep the fuel fresh. Change your oil and add a fuel stablizer like BMW Group Fuel System Cleaner Plus. This will keep gasoline from breaking down and turning to varnish over the cold months. Simply add the stabilizer to the tank and then run the motorcycle - take it for a ride. Make sure that the engine runs long enough for the additive to work its way through the fuel system and into the combustion chamber. Top the tank off to minimize the amount air and moisture in the fuel tank.
Proper maintenance can prolong the life of the battery and keep things cranking!
If you have a conventional lead acid battery, make sure it's topped off with distilled water.
Keep the battery charged. We recommend using an automatic (or "smart") charger which monitors the battery voltage and will not overcharge the battery, even if it is left plugged in. If your bike does not already have one, consider having an accessory plug port or lead installed. This isn’t expensive, and makes the task of charging your battery simple.
- Make sure your tires are full of air. If possible get your wheels off the ground; if you have a center stand use it. And don’t forget to check your tire pressures before you begin riding again.
- Don't tempt Nature! When it gets cold outside, wild creatures look for places to stay warm and dry. Never store pet food or bird seed near your bike. Cover the intake to your air box and muffler so as not to invite critters to move in.
Make sure your bike is clean. Wash your bike to remove any corrosives or dead bugs. If you park your bike outside, try to get it under a roof or awning, and use a weatherproof cover over it. Even if you park in the garage a dust cover will keep the bike clean.
Following these simple tips will help keep your bike ready to ride and may prevent costly repairs.
Please don't hesitate to ask us if you have questions about your bike. If you need information about the products mentioned above, we keep these items in stock and can help you match them to your budget and needs. We also offer a WINTER PACKAGE. It includes a bottle of fuel treatment, cover, and a Battery Tender Jr. Call for details!
Scott Esteran, Service Manager
FUEL SYSTEM TIPS
Gasoline is not what it used to be! Our service department is seeing a significant number of fuel system and fuel related running problems. The gas you buy at most pumps today contains up to 10% ethanol, and this limit may be raised even higher to 15% per gallon in the future. Ethanol is a plant based alcohol, and while it is combustible, it is also a solvent with the tendency to absorb moisture from the air. These properties are not ideal for any internal combustion engine, especially those which were designed before the introduction of ethanol.
Here are some things you can do to address fuel related issues:
Avoid Ethanol whenever possible. Consider using non-ethanol gasoline especially in older vehicles. Websites like http://www.pure-gas.org/ publish a list of stations where you can purchase gasoline which does not contain ethanol. If you do use fuel containing ethanol routinely, we recommend a fuel treatment product called StarTron which reduces the negative effects of ethanol.
Keep your Fuel System Clean. Regardless of the ethanol content of gasoline, a normal byproduct of combustion is carbon build up in your engine. We recommend the use of BMW Group Fuel System Cleaner Plus. This product contains Techron®, a Chevron product which cleans and lubricates the fuel system, removes carbon from valves, and reduces pinging. It also contains a unique additive which combats corrosion of fuel system components. BMW fuel cleaner is specifically formulated for the manufacturer, and we recommend it for all brands we sell and service. You may find other products which contain Techron®, but the BMW product is the only one we are aware of that stabilizes, cleans carbon build up, and protects from corrosion.
Use 1oz. per gallon of the BMW cleaner once every 3000 miles. At $13.95 for a 20 oz bottle, this is an economical additive for all of your vehicles! If you are experiencing running problems due to carbon buildup, we offer an intense in shop treatment of the fuel system. This costs about $175.00 and is very effective in cleaning heavier carbon buildups from the fuel system.
Use Fuel Stabilizer. Fuel breaks down much more quickly than it used to. When fuel breaks down, it can thicken to the consistency of varnish, clogging fuel system components and causing expensive repairs. If you don’t run your motorcycle or scooter enough to refuel often, or if you are storing it for several months, be sure to add a fuel stabilizer, top off the tank, and run the engine long enough to circulate the stabilized fuel through the system.
Following these suggestions will go a long way in keeping your vehicle’s performance from suffering due to fuel system issues.