How to keep your bike safe and sound over winter

Bike Tips During Winter

How to keep your bike safe and sound over winter

How to keep your bike safe and sound over winter

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How to keep your bike safe and sound over winter

Riding all winter is perfectly acceptable, but so is putting the pride and joy away as the leaves fall from the trees and the colder weather returns. And if you’re going to tuck your bike away, there are a few things you should remember which will help keep it safe and secure, and make that first ride in spring even better!

Oil change

Most people pull their bikes out in spring and give them a service, which includes the obligatory oil change. However, our contacts at oil giant Motorex recommend changing the oil before storage. And it’s hard to disagree: which sounds better? Leave old, dirty oil resting in there for months, or ensure it’s put away with a fresh helping of clean, healthy, high quality oil?


Leaving the bike resting in one spot for months on end can cause tyres to deform and create flat spots. The ideal solution? A paddock stand; get the bike off the ground and in the air. If that’s not possible though, try and lay some carpet down so the bike’s not resting on a cold concrete floor, and rotate the wheels every couple of weeks or so if you can.

Give it a clean

This one should go without saying, really, but give your bike a thorough clean before it goes away. And dry it off afterwards. Then follow it up with one of a variety of protection or anti-corrosion products on the market. Things like WD40 or more specialist products from the likes of Muc Off of Motorex help keep moisture and dampness away from metal areas, preventing corrosion and rusting.

Cover it up

Fancy bike cover or old bed sheets? It doesn’t matter, but it helps keep your bike clean, dry, and if ever you’re pottering around in the garage or shed it can help protect from scratches. Don’t have a garage? Then we would advise spending a bit more on a proper, waterproof cover to keep your bike safe, secure and protected from the elements.

Bike Tips During Winter


This is especially important if your bike is kept outside. A cover (see above) not only protects from the elements, but also makes your bike less visible or appealing to anyone looking to relieve you off it without your permission. After that there are plenty of security devices on the market. We recommend a heavy duty chain and padlock. When chaining your bike up, try to go around the frame rather than a wheel (wheels can be removed quicker) and try to ensure none of the chain is on the ground, making it harder for thiefs to cut by standing on croppers or hold in place to get a grinder on it.

If you’re able, we’d also recommend a tracking device, available from the likes of Bike Trac, to give you that added piece of mind and added security of a notification if it does move without your knowledge.


You’ll find conflicting advice on what to do about fuel over winter – drain the tank or brim it. Brimming it will help prevent the inside of the tank from rusting, and is, frankly, easier than draining it completely. Just ensure you run it up every couple of weeks and get it nice and warm. This helps stale fuel from clogging injectors or carburettors, as well as helping keep moisture out of things like exhausts. Just, er, let it cool down before putting a cover back over it, otherwise you’ll land yourself with another, time-consuming job.


It will go flat. And that makes firing the bike up every few weeks even more of a pain, makes an ad hoc ride on a nice autumnal day impossible, and renders alarms or tracking devices redundant. It’s also no good for the batter, either. A trickle charger will keep your battery topped up, helping preserve its life and efficiency, and mean that when the sun does begin to warm the asphalt in spring, it’s one less thing to worry about.

Tax, insurance, and MOT

Don’t forget any of these! If you’re going to declare your bike SORN, still insure it. We don’t want to think about it being stolen or the garage burning down, but if either happens, it’s lost and gone forever.

Know when your bikes MOT expires (if it has one). You don’t want to get giddy at the first sign of spring, only to get caught riding with no MOT because you forgot about it. Same goes for your VED. If you’ve SORNed your bike, remember to renew your tax before heading out for the first time.

Look after your riding kit

If you’re putting the bike away for winter, you’re probably putting your riding kit away too. Treat it to a clean, and make sure it’s stored somewhere dry and well ventilated. Remember to empty those pockets of wrappers too – or maybe that’s just us?

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#StaySafe, #StayAlert, #StayPositive and keep washing those hands (yes, it’s still important!).


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