There is nothing more frustrating than having to rush downtown for a meeting, only for your motorbike to quit on you.
Statistics show that motorcycles are the most common motor vehicle in the world, particularly in populous countries such as India, China, and Indonesia. In most developing countries, motorcycles are an affordable form of individual motorized transportation. In developed countries, however, they are known to be luxury goods generally used for recreation.
Given these facts, it’s easy to see how motorcycles are both a necessity and a luxury as a mode of transportation. Since they are a common way to get around, it’s imperative that motorbike riders know how to use and maintain their vehicles every now and then. Moreover, they should know how to fix simple issues, should they encounter them.
Perhaps you’ve been riding a bike for years and can perform a professional repair in half the time that a shop would. If you are the average motorbike rider who doesn’t quite know what to do, however, there’s nothing wrong with learning one little repair at a time. Here are five things to take a closer look at when your motorbike isn’t starting:
THE BATTERY - Is it weak or dead?
The most logical reason why your motorcycle isn’t starting is that your motorbike’s battery is either weak or dead. The battery is the lifeline of your motorbike’s entire electric system. The bike won’t start at all if the battery is dead nor will it be able to function if the battery is weak. To identify whether the battery is the problem, try pushing the horn button or switching on the headlights.
If neither of them is able to work as they should, chances are that your battery is weak or dead and you will need a replacement. It is worthy to note that a dead battery is often the result of neglect, extreme weather, or age. Therefore, be sure that you check your battery more often than not and take good care of your motorbike in general.
THE FUEL - Is there enough? Is the tank clogged?
These are two things you need to be wary of when it comes to your fuel - how much fuel you have and whether your tank vent is clogged. Sometimes we forget to keep an eye on the fuel and don’t notice that we have run out. It can be difficult to check on its availability by merely using its gauge. If you start the engine and your motorbike won’t work, try using your phone’s flashlight to get a glimpse of you motorbike’s fuel levels. Alternatively, you could shake your bike and see if you can hear any sloshing of fuel as a telltale sign.
The other thing that you will need to check for is your tank vent being clogged. There is a small vent on the fuel tank of your motorbike where the fuel is supplied into the intake system. This small vent can get clogged and affect your bike’s ability to use the fuel. You can unclog the vent with the help of a thin wire and a strong blow on the hole.
THE EXHAUST - Is the intake or the exhaust obstructed?
Another reason why your motorbike may not be starting could be an obstruction in the intake or the exhaust. Your motor’s airbox or muffler exit can get blocked due to a number of reasons. Check if there is anything in the way and remove before trying to start the engine again.
THE SPARK PLUG - Is it loose?
A loose spark plug is one common reason why your motorbike won’t start. This can occur as a result of strong jerks while you drive. The good news is that you don’t need a mechanic to fix this problem. All you have to do is to simply unplug and replug the connectors. Then, you can go ahead and see if your motorcycle starts again.
THE CUTOFF SWITCH - Is it on?
If nothing else has worked, check the cutoff switch. Sometimes, people forget to check their engine cutoff switches when starting their motorbikes. This is because when we turn off our bikes, we tend to use the ignition key instead of the engine kill or cutoff switch. It’s easy to forget whether you turned off the cutoff switch or not. It’s best to get in the habit of turning on and off your motorbike properly and follow the same drill each time.
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