When people buy motorcycles, they usually do so with the intention of using it for several years. At some point, motorcycle owners often notice that their vehicles simply are not performing the way that it used to when it was first purchased. The fact of the matter is that just as the human body experiences wear and tear as we work and age, so does a motorcycle experience the same wearing down of its gears and parts. Decreased motorcycle performance resulting from normal wear and tear is a common issue among riders, but with basic and periodic maintenance, a motorcycle’s performance can remain optimized for longer periods of time.
To stay in good condition, a motorcycle should undergo occasional intermediate-level maintenance, which should be understood as totally different from mere repair work. It involves overhauling significant parts or the whole of the motorcycle itself. Here are helpful tips concerning both intermediate-level maintenance and basic, periodic maintenance to help keep your cycle in tip-top shape: Basic and periodic maintenance tips
Always make use of high-caliber fuel from a reliable fuel station. Ensure that you are using fuel that goes according to the manufacturer’s Recommended Octane Number (RON) for your motorcycle. Doing so is sure to improve your motorcycle’s performance.
Secondly, always make sure that you use spark plugs made by your motorcycle’s manufacturer. Spark plugs made by other manufacturers are often incompatible with your motorcycle’s needs and render your vehicle useless. Check the electrode gap to make sure that it stays at a condition that reflects the manufacturer’s recommendations. When you buy performance plugs at an aftermarket, make sure you buy plugs that fall within the motorcycle manufacturer’s rating and standard.
Regularly clean your motorcycle’s air filter and always keep it dry. Don’t wait for your air filter to become too deteriorated before you decide to replace it. When you use air filters bought from the spare parts store, make sure that the ones that you use match up to the filter manufacturer’s recommendations.
Only utilize engine oil made by a reputable manufacturer that has a grade and rating that fits your motorcycle manufacturer’s standards. Avoid using any other type of oil.
Apply lubricants unto your motorcycle’s drive chain every now and then. Before you lubricate your chain, clean it first to prevent a buildup of plaque that may affect its performance.
Adjust your chain if it feels oddly loose or overly rigid. Take the necessary steps to adjust the chain tension (slack) perfectly so that the chain can move efficiently.
Keep the swing-arm slack and the wheels aligned with each other. Unaligned wheels may cause your tires to wear unevenly and shorten their lifespan.
Rectify the amount of free play that your brake mechanism has every now and then for more efficient and effective braking. Regularly calibrate the drum braking mechanism with the brake calliper assembly to ensure that the brakes play effectively unto the wheels. Also, keep a decent amount of free play between the brake and clutch cable by applying adjustments periodically.
Maintain proper tire pressure as defined by your bike’s manufacturer. A tire that isn’t inflated enough might make it difficult for your motorcycle to move, while one that is overly inflated is at risk of bursting. Tire pressure is incredibly important for the safety of any riders. Intermediate-level maintenance tips
Intermediate-level maintenance is a highly sensitive operation that your motorcycle should undergo once every year or so. It is important to have these tasks carried out in a service shop authorized or certified competent by the motorcycle manufacturer. Ordinary mechanics will not do as they may not have the proper tools and training to carry out this kind of maintenance.
Adjusting the timing chain is important to keep your engine’s valves running well. But eventually, the timing chain wears down as the motorcycle’s total mileage increases over time. The signs of a worn-down timing chain include buzzing and whining sounds around the engine’s cover area as well as difficulty in starting the engine. You may also notice sluggish performance. Fixing this issue might involve replacing the timing chain or its associated parts altogether, which is why you must have this kind of maintenance done in a proper service shop.
The valve, valve clearance, and tappets are also maintained to keep the engine well-tuned and the flow of fuel within the engine smooth. Adjusting the tappets is crucial to prevent the valves from being bent by the engine’s piston.
Have the motorcycle’s carburetor, fuel injector, and throttle body cleaned. Even the highest quality of fuel still may still leave a number of undesirable dregs built up in these parts over the years. Therefore, cleaning these parts is sure to help keep your engine performing seamlessly.
Tinkering with the ECU may bring unintended consequences. Therefore, only have your maintenance service provider update the motorcycle’s engine control unit (ECU) when necessary. The update would usually involve having your engine’s fuel map revised as well as having the error codes that have accumulated from changing your motorcycle’s parts through the years removed. That being said, leaving the ECU at its default factory settings will not hurt.
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