The monsoons are a difficult time for bikers. Riding in the rains is fun, but only on nice empty roads. In the city, however, we have to deal with buses and cabs splashing water on us at every turn besides getting drenched. But while we can learn to live with that, what the rains do to our beloved rides is much harder to get used to. Now that the rainy season is finally back, here are some useful bike service tips on how to maintain your bike during the monsoons in India.
Make sure the Brakes are in good condition
The brakes are the most crucial thing to take care of during the rains. The water greatly reduces the friction power of the brakes which can cause serious problems if they are worn out or damaged. If your bike has drum brakes, get them cleaned from the inside and replace the brake shoes/pads. For disc brakes, get the discs checked and also verify the level of brake oil.
Get the Tyres checked
Riding a bike with bald or worn out tyres in the rain is a disaster waiting to happen. Tyres with proper treads are a must for safe rides during the monsoons and it’s always a good idea to get yours replaced if they are too old. Also make sure that the tyre pressure is at the optimum level as under or over-inflated tyres can cause a loss of grip.
Apply an Anti-Rust Protection Layer
This is a big problem mainly for those proud Enfield owners. Other bikes generally have more fibre and plastic in their bodies so it’s not such a big issue for them. Applying an anti-rust protection layer on all exposed metal parts can prevent huge rusting problems (and proportional replacement charges) from occurring due to prolonged exposure to water.
Clean the bike chain regularly
Riding in the monsoons involves riding through a lot of mud which ends up as muck and grime on your bike chain. That’s why it’s a good idea to clean your bike’s chain once every 500 kms or so. The rain also washes away the grease and lubricants from the chain, so applying lube to it once in a while will also help a lot.
Get a Teflon Coating
It isn’t uncommon for a bike’s paint to get slightly damaged in the rain, especially if it has a metal body. A Teflon coating makes sure the water doesn’t touch the bike’s paint. Also the accompanying mud and dirt can be wiped off easily if this coating is present.
Clean the Air Filter
The moisture-laden air during the monsoons might cause the air filter to hold a lot of water which will eventually lead to the filter tearing or getting clogged and not allowing proper air to pass through. This results in the bike stalling, or giving jerks on pulling the accelerator a bit. So a clean, dry and fresh air filter is always better.
Park in covered spots
Having to park your bike in the rain is not something anyone likes. While you may not have an option if you’re out somewhere, your overnight parking spot should definitely be covered. If you don’t have one, make sure to use a proper rain-proof cover for your bike so that nothing’s damaged due to prolonged exposure to water.
Clean your bike to remove the mud
Once it dries up, the mud can cause a lot of problems on your bike. It restricts the movement of certain parts and can damage the paint if it’s there for a long time. So be sure to thoroughly wash your bike at least a couple of times a week and make sure all the important joints are greased properly.
Do you have any other tips to protect a bike during the monsoons? Let us know in the comments below.
Also read: The 10 most beautiful places to visit in Kerala during the monsoon