Mo­tor­cy­cle main­te­nance – in part­ner­ship with BIKE IT

Win­ter is com­ing so now’s the time to think about pro­tect­ing your bike’s bat­tery.

Motorcycle Monthly - - Maintenance -

An of­ten ne­glected part of mo­tor­cy­cle main­te­nance, here’s a brief guide to keep­ing your mo­tor­cy­cle bat­ter­ies in tip top con­di­tion this win­ter.

A proper long-term bat­tery care rou­tine is vi­tal to keep per­for­mance at its op­ti­mum through­out the cold months. As the tem­per­a­ture drops, the chem­i­cal re­ac­tion inside the bat­tery slows down, re­duc­ing its ca­pac­ity to ac­cept a charge. Add to that the in­creased strain from more head­light use and aux­il­iary/ fog light­ing, heated grips and you’re head­ing for bat­tery fail­ure. And, even if you don’t use your bike very of­ten through the win­ter months, charge is still lost to alarms/ im­mo­bilis­ers, clocks and on-board com­put­ers – and of course, through self-dis­charge, as the bat­tery saps a lit­tle of its own en­ergy every day to stay alive.

Reg­u­larly charg­ing and main­tain­ing your bat­tery not only keeps it work­ing to max­i­mum ca­pac­ity, it can also dou­ble its work­ing life, as well as sig­nif­i­cantly re­duc­ing the like­li­hood of fail­ure. Thank­fully, most in­tel­li­gent mo­tor­cy­cle bat­tery charg­ers come with leads which can be per­ma­nently fixed to your bat­tery, with the bat­tery con­nec­tor neatly hid­den away in the bike – mak­ing charg­ing it up just a mat­ter of plug­ging the con­nec­tor in to the charger.

Trickle charg­ers charge the bat­tery con­tin­u­ally at a fixed rate. How­ever, they re­quire a watch­ful eye as they do not have a way of re­spond­ing when a bat­tery is fully charged. Leav­ing them to charge ex­ces­sively can dam­age the bat­tery.

Ta­per charg­ers de­crease the amount of cur­rent de­liv­ered through the bat­tery as the volt­age rises. As with trickle charg­ers they do re­quire a watch­ful eye to avoid over­charg­ing. Both ta­per and trickle charg­ers are slow.

Pulse or in­tel­li­gent charg­ers mon­i­tor and col­lect feed­back from the bat­tery’s volt­age dur­ing the charg­ing process and drop into a standby mode once the bat­tery is fully charged.

When the bat­tery nat­u­rally dis­charges to a cer­tain level the charger will go into charg­ing mode and re­store the bat­tery to its nor­mal charge. A pulse charger can be left unat­tended for long pe­ri­ods of time, but you should still carry out pe­ri­odic fluid level checks.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.