Keep Your Maintenance Checklist Tight During Hurricane Season
When hurricane season rolls across the country, it's time to weatherproof your motorcycle. Your precision machine can take a lot of heat and handle some heavy highway adventure, but salt water, high winds, and heavy hail can do a number on even the roughest rides. Before leaving it all to a tarp--or even what you think is a secure garage, consider a few motorcycle preparation and maintenance points to make sure that the next hurricane--or its floods--are no match for your wheels.
Motorcycle Covers Can Be A Blessing And A Curse
To protect your motorcycle from the ravages of powerful storms, a motorcycle cover may seem like a good option. Even if it doesn't protect the bike from heavy-hitting debris, it can still stop ravaging winds from blowing water into dangerous places. ...When done properly.
Covering a motorcycle for storm purposes isn't easy, even with fitted covers. If the winds are strong enough, the rain can be whipped into the cover if the cover isn't secured tightly. In some cases, the cover can even act as a parachute or a set of sails to drag the motorcycle more than it would without a cover.
Be sure that the bottom of the cover is tightly fastened and not pointing upwards. A closed cover with a small gap at the bottom won't be a problem outside of the most devastating storms, in which you'll have much bigger problems.
Corrosion Protection Before And After Storms
Most motorcycle designs involve chrome and protective plated materials, so if you're in a coastal area for hurricanes, you have some time to recover. As the salt dries, you'll only have to worry about the salty crust that can be wiped off. If it rains again, you'll have a corrosion problem on your hands.
Before the storm, try to lubricate the non-plated, vital components. This means lubricating the chassis and chain, as the lubricant will create a barrier that both protects the components from corrosion and makes brushing the salt off easier. You should use engine detailer or WD-40 on any exposed metal, and cover the bike before the storm. After the storm, perform a thorough examination of the inner components and try to dry off as much as you can.
If you need to store the motorcycle before maintenance, avoid bringing in any other vehicles that have moisture and try to clear out any flood water from any garage you choose. The humidity from standing water is enough to promote corrosion, so find dry storage.
Contact a motorcycle services professional to discuss other protective measures for your bike.