Preventative Steps You Can Take to Avoid Motorcycle Accidents
Of the thousands of motorcycle accidents and fatalities that occur every year, a large majority of these could potentially have been avoided. While many of these might have happened because car motorists weren't paying attention or didn't see a motorcycle, others might have happened due to lack of preventive maintenance.
Maintaining your motorcycle doesn't take a long time but it can go a long way in keeping you safe on the road. Here are some basic steps to take to keep your bike in good shape and avoid getting injured in an accident or worse.
Purchase a Service Manual
The first thing you'll want to do before performing your own maintenance on your motorcycle is to get your hands on a copy of your make and model's service manual. The manual will have a lot of guidance as far as regular maintenance you need to do throughout the year, not just during riding season.
Check the Battery and Cables
The battery and cables on your motorcycle should be clean, tight, and corrosion-free. Check out the battery fluid level and top it off with distilled water if needed. To get the most life out of your battery, battery tenders can extend the life of your motorcycle battery and by extension your bike itself.
If you've been maintaining your motorcycle for as long as you've had it, you might not need to do more than just lubricate the transmission, primary, and brakes, and top off the crankcase. However, regular oil changes are necessary to keep your motorcycle in good clean riding condition and to prevent potentially costly mechanical breakdowns in the future.
Know Your Tires
Your service manual will have information in it regarding the proper air pressure and wear limits of your tires. Always be aware of what your tires look like to make sure they have sufficient tread and there's no sidewall cracks. You can and should purchase an inexpensive tire gauge and check the tires briefly before every ride. This doesn't take a lot of time and it could save you from a serious accident.
Look Over the Lights and Turn Signals
If you ever drive at night, it's important to be sure that the lightbulbs and lenses on your motorcycle are clean and don't have any cracks. If rain or moisture gets into the bulbs, it can cause your entire lighting circuit to fail, which would make driving at night dangerous as well as illegal.
Keep It Clean
To prevent rust and dirt from damaging the finishes and mechanics of your motorcycle, keep it clean regularly. If dirt is allowed to sit on your bike, it can cause rust and corrosion on essential brackets, bolts and motorcycle hardware, which may leave you stranded on the side of the road one day or in a serious accident.
Regular preventative maintenance on your motorcycle is not just important to keep your motorcycle looking good and shiny. Preventive maintenance is also essential to make your ride safer and more enjoyable. These basic steps will help you know what to look for and why it's necessary.