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Hot tips for bike maintenance in the summer

Stranded in the middle of nowhere, with a bike gone wrong, in peak summer is a biker's darkest nightmare.They say prevention is better than cure. We say maintenance is better than repair.

india Updated: Apr 10, 2003 15:45 IST

Stranded in the middle of nowhere, with a bike gone wrong, in peak summer is a biker's darkest nightmare. They say prevention is better than cure. We say maintenance is better than repair. Here are a few simple tips that will go a long way in keeping your bike hale and hearty.

- Maintenance of the bike goes beyond getting it serviced at regular intervals. Washing and wiping are also parts of the game.

- Check the oil level regularly. Most of us tend to ignore this but an empty oil reservoir may turn out to be some seriously bad news for your bike.

- Maintaining correct tyre pressure may sound too trivial but people tend to forget it most often. Follow the owner's manual for the figures. The manufacturers specify tyre pressure for solo as well as pillion riding. Follow the one that suits your normal riding conditions. As summer is approaching, do not keep tyre pressure higher than specified. The heat may result in a tyre burst.

- Clean the spark plug regularly. Most of us forget about the plug till one day the bike comes to a painful halt. Don't wait for the eventuality, as a clean spark plug will also boost power and mileage.

- Checking chain tension through the inspection window is painful. However, still do it. Keeping the correct chain tension will result in fuel savings and also avoid chain and sprocket damage.

- Check all cables from time to time for frayed ends and unnatural twists and bends. Cables are most likely to snap from damaged ends and a broken cable can leave you immobile in the middle of nowhere.

- Brake liners tend to wear out with usage and braking becomes weaker. Adjust brakes through the brake nut at the end of the brake rod. Replace liners if there is no more adjustment space.

- Check the fuel pipe from time to time. It is mostly made of rubber and tends to wear out and develop cracks from which fuel may leak.

- Check tyres for wear and tear as well as cracks.

- Check all electricals from time to time. Don't be lazy in replacing a fused bulb. It may prove costly sometimes.

- It's summertime and the sun spoils the paint and chrome job on your bike, not to mention leaving your seat too hot to handle. Always park your bike in the shade. It's better to cover it when not in use.

- Get your bike serviced at regular intervals. Make sure that the mechanic cleans the carburettor thoroughly.
In the end, it's the attitude that matters. While all of us are not exactly mechanically oriented, it pays to observe the service guy at work and learn some tricks of the trade from him.

First Published: Apr 10, 2003 10:25 IST