As we load up our bikes for a tour or swing a leg over ready for a Spring ride, do you look over your bike before you ride away? Are you sure that there is no damage, leaks, punctures or a failed brake light??
There a quick check routine that you can follow called POWDERS, which will help (and we use for Advanced Training) - have a look below:-
Petrol. Make sure you fill your tank and top up regularly - know the range of your bike when full with fuel.
Oil. You can check your oil by using a dipstick or sight glass in the side of the engine casing, when the engine is cold. Remember to keep the bike vertical and bear in mind that overfilling will also cause damage, so top up slowly and check your level regularly.
Water. - if you have a water-cooled engine and again, the bike needs to be vertical. If you find that you’re low on water, remember try not to use tap water, as you’ll need a mix of water and antifreeze.
Damage. Check for any damage on the bikes panels or fittings – this could be on your helmet(s) or your protective clothing.
Electrics. It is always a good idea to check your lights and both the foot and hand brake light switches and indicators. These lights are all you have to signal to others on the road!
Rubber. Remember to check your tyre pressure as well as the condition and tread depth. Bear in mind this could change depending on the amount of weight your bike is carrying. Remember to test this when your tyres are cold, as the reading will be higher when they’re hot. The legal UK limit is 1mm across three-quarters of tyre and visible tread on the rest.
Suspension / Steering. Look over the forks for leaks, check the back spring(s) and move the steering from side to side, feeling for any bumps or knocks that could be worn bearing.
These are checks I do almost every time I walk up to my bike - take a look at the tyres as you walk up, remember the need to check those lights all work, walk around and look for leaks or liquids below the machine and then when you ride away, you can be confident it is all working and you can concentrate of the ride ahead.