4 Important Maintenance Tips For First-Time Motorcycle Owners

There are few things more fun than riding a motorcycle on the open road. While riding a motorcycle can be very enjoyable, it can quickly turn frustrating if your bike breaks down. There's nothing fun about waiting under a highway overpass for help to arrive. One of the best ways to avoid breakdowns is to stick to a strict maintenance schedule. Just like your car, your motorcycle needs regular maintenance to keep its parts working properly.

Here are four types of maintenance that you should do on a regular basis:

Lubricate the chain

There are few parts on a motorcycle that are more important than the chain. There's limited space on a motorcycle. Often, the motor is somewhere in the middle of the bike, disconnected from the back wheel. A chain is used to connect the two pieces and to allow the motor to drive the wheel.

If the chain breaks or stops working, your bike won't move. Unfortunately, the chain is exposed to dirt, rocks, and plenty of other materials that can cause it to break down.

After each ride, thoroughly lubricate the chain. You can find lubricant at any motorcycle or automotive supply store. Cover the back wheel so you don't get lubricant on the tire. After you let the lubricant sit for a few minutes, wipe it up with a rag. If you do this after every ride, you'll avoid many chain problems.

Change the headlight

This may seem simple, but far too many riders forget about it. Usually, you won't get much warning that your headlight is about to go out. It may dim for a few minutes, but then it will suddenly die. Driving a motorcycle without a headlight is extremely dangerous. Car drivers already may have a tough time spotting you because you're on a bike. Riding without a headlight makes it even more challenging.

Set an alarm on your phone or on your calendar to change your light regularly. Check the owner's manual to see how many miles the light is supposed to last. Then, schedule a change before the headlight even reaches that point.

Top off the brake fluid

As you can probably imagine, you need your brakes in top working condition. You want them to respond quickly in the event of an emergency. While it's unlikely that your brakes would ever go out completely, they could be slow to act if the fluid gets dirty or the pads wear down.

One easy maintenance step is to top off your brake fluid on a regular basis. You have two brake fluid reservoirs on your bike, one in the front and one in the back. Simply open them up an look inside. If they look low, fill the reservoir up with new fluid. It's one of the simplest, but most important maintenance steps you can take with your bike.

For more advice, talk to a motorcycle repair expert. They can give you advice on how to keep your bike in top running condition. To learn more, contact a company like Sherwood Motorcycle & Power Products Ltd with any questions you had.