by Liz Jansen
If you’re like me, I squeeze as much season as possible out of autumn and by the time I’m stopped, daylight is short and the temperatures quite chilly. I’m pretty good at winterizing my motorcycle; less so at making sure gear is cleaned before it’s put away.
When spring arrives, we want to get out there riding. But it’s important to give our gear a good examination before we do. We only intend to look good in it, never to test it, but if it’s called into use, we want to be confident that it will protect us.
Follow these steps to make sure your motorcycle gear is ready for the season:
- Make sure it still fits properly. A phenomenon that happens in my closet is that gear has a tendency to shrink over the winter. Gear should be snug but you’ve got to be able to breathe and move freely, from head to toe. Read 10 Functions to Look for in Motorcycle Jackets and 10 Functions to Look for in Motorcycle Pants.
- Examine it for damage. Ideally, if gear is stored properly, nothing will have nested or damaged it during winter storage. Check also for worn areas, frayed seams, or rips in the fabric. Examine both exterior and interior, especially the pockets which hold protective armor.
- Replace faded pieces. Fading is caused by ultraviolet damage. It also degrades the integrity of the surface, reducing its protective properties. The greater the fading, the greater the degradation.
- Clean it. Gear gets dirty from bugs, grime, and sweat. Periodically give it a deep cleaning by immersing it in soap and water. Read How to Wash Textile Riding Gear
- Treat leather apparel. Get out your favorite waterproofing product and slather some on to keep it supple and durable.
- Examine your helmet. Replace scratched visors, check for signs of damage, and check the date stamp. Most manufacturers recommend replacing it every five years. Production dates are noted on the helmet, either on a sticker under the liner, or stamped onto the strap. Read why here.
- Prepare for layering. Spring temperatures and weather conditions are unpredictable and it’s wise to prepare for fluctuating conditions. A beautiful sunny day can cool off quickly and you want to be ready.
- Check the battery on remote heated gear controllers. Electrics extend the season on both ends, but if the battery goes dead, it’s only as good as it’s insulation properties. Don’t get caught short. Also carry extra fuses.
If you haven’t already done so, make sure your gear is in peak shape for the season. You’ll not only look fabulous, but you’ll be protected as well.
Related Post: 10 Steps for a Spring Motorcycle Checkup