The rainy season might be poetic and beautiful, but it’s sure not a walk in the park for two-wheeler owners. Not only is it much more difficult to ride in the rains, but maintaining their pride and joy that is their bike is no easy task either. Here are some pointers to best take care of your ride when the rain Gods decide to bless you this year:
- Brakes: Your safety is the most important thing to consider while riding a two wheeler. Thus the quality of the breaks cannot be anything but the best. Wet roads are a dangerous thing. It is difficult enough to control your bike on a wet road, not having Grade a brakes could be fatal. Especially since you cannot brake hard or suddenly on wet roads, it is all the more important to keep your brakes in great condition. Always, and particularly in the wet season, make it a point to get your disks, inside of your drum brakes and liners cleaned. Further, make sure that the break oil is sufficient. For bikes with drum brakes, make sure it is cleaned from the inside and make sure that the brake shoes/pads are in good condition. If you have disc brakes, check the discs for damage.
- Tyres: One of the most important things to take care of while using your two wheeler in the monsoon is your tyres. Never ride in the rains with worn out tyres. The treads of the tyres provide grip by dispersing standing water. Your tyre should have deep treads, not only in the center but also on the sides. Use a one rupee coin to test the depth of the groves. Insert the coin into the groove and make sure that a minimum of 2-3mm depth is in the grove. If below that, you should consider changing the tyre. Anything below that, and you should consider changing tyres. Tyre pressure can also make a huge difference in the grip you get. Ideally you should set your tyre pressure a couple of psi below the levels required in the dry. Check for tyre pressure regularly to ensure it is at optimal levels.
Since heat expands in the heat, tyre pressure in the summer are usually on the lower side. This means that in the monsoon, since the air is colder, it contracts and the tyre pressure falls. Thus make sure that the tyre pressure is at optimum in the monsoon, but is also not overfilled.
- It’s not always easy to find covered parking when you take your bike out of your own garage. But if possible, it is best to avoid parking in the open where your bike will get wet a lot in the summer. To avoid the bike’s colour getting faded due to too much exposure to the elements, you could coat the bike’s body with Teflon before the monsoons. This will protect the colour so your bike will look younger for longer.
- Anti-Rust protection layer: Back in the day, rusting was a much bigger problem than it is now. Today most bikes are made of fiber bodies which make them resistant to rusting. However the bike’s main metal frame needs that extra protection which you can get from a cheap anti-rust protection layer.
- In case your bike has an uncovered drive chain, then you must make sure that it is oiled well and must also wash it regularly as a lot of mud may get deposited in it, especially in the wet season.
- Clean up the Air Filter: Since the air is heavy with moisture in the monsoon, your air filter might not work at its best. The air filter might hold a lot of moisture making it get clogged, and not allowing air to pass through easily. This could mean your bike stalling, jerking and/or pulling the accelerator. Thus, keep a clean, dry air filter for best results.
- All the hinges and levers should be well lubricated to have a smooth journey.
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