With spring right around the corner it’s a good idea to go over your favorite two-wheeled machine to get it sharpened up and ready to tear up the streets when the weather gives you the first opportunity. If you properly winterized your bike, most of this list will probably already be taken care of. But if you’re like me, you’ll probably ride to the bitter end of the season, end up basically stopping riding when the weather forces you to and that doesn’t result in the bike not being properly put away. So here’s few things to do to make sure your first spring rides are worry free and enjoyable.

Battery Maintenance

If you didn’t put your bike on a battery tender for the winter, you should immediately do so. When you do finally get the opportunity to ride, the ultimate buzz kill is pushing that start button and being greeted with a “click” instead of a roar from an engine. It’s also good idea to swap out your battery for a fresh one every few years. If you notice it not holding a charge or dying easily it may be time to drop in a new battery.  

Tires/Proper Inflation

The single most important thing you can do for your tires is to keep them properly inflated. And if your bike has been sitting for awhile, I can almost guarantee they have lost tire pressure. If you look on the sidewall of your tire you will see the recommended psi. You may have to roll your bike a bit to find it on the tire, and the tire companies always use the smallest print possible, but trust me its on there. Also make sure you check both tires. They can vary in recommended pressures.

Fluid Changes Oil/Primary/Transmission

If you didn’t do these before you put your bike away for the winter, you definitely need to do them now. The last thing you want to do is start cycling dirty oil from the previous year through your bike. Take the time to change the engine, primary and transmission oils.  Your bike will run better and you’ll have peace of mind for those first spring canyon carving sessions.

Brakes

Most of the time you don't really think too much about your brakes until they aren't working properly, and then it's too late. Take a peek in the calipers and make sure your brake pads still have life left in them. If they are under half way worn, it's a good idea to throw on some new sets of pads for the season. Also doesn’t hurt to give the rotors a good once-over to make sure they are in good condition.

Clean Bike

Besides making your whip shine like a new diamond to start off the riding season, it’s not a bad idea to give your bike a quick bath before riding it to help find potential leaks. There’s a chance your bike could have developed a leak during its wintertime hibernation. If the bike is still holding dirt and road grime from last year, you may not see the leak right away. If the bike is clean, you’re more likely to see the new leak.

Air Filter

It's a good idea to open up those air boxes and intakes to make sure a rodent hasn’t taken up residence in your air cleaner. Your bike inhaling a nest of some sort isn't going to go over well. If you have a stock air filter, I highly recommend an upgrade. Stock filters don’t flow well and wear pretty quickly. A good high flow filter not only adds performance but they can be cleaned and re-oiled for a lifetime of use. If you have a high flow filter, now is a great time to wash and oil it... a task easily accomplished with a recharge kit.

New Gear

Again if you rode your bike until the last possible moment last year, you probably didn't properly store your gear either (I didn’t). So get out your helmet, gloves and jacket and go through them. Wash the bugs off, check for holes and wear and generally give them a good scrubbing. If you have worn out gear, now is the best time to replace it. All the latest and greatest gear is dropping right now, it's a great time to upgrade with some fresh 2019 pieces.  

An easy Saturday afternoon and a few golden sodas later you should be able to knock all the riding prep out of the way. Hopefully by the time you read this the weather in your neck of the woods is cooperating and you are on the road. Happy motoring in 2019.

Check out my pro-tips on this video.