2. Gas Treatment

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Hopefully, your bike began its winter down season with a full fuel load. Inside the the tank’s sealed environment, the air in a partially-filled tank becomes a micro-climate. With temperature changes, the moisture in the air will condense on the inside of the tank and trickle down into the fuel. Today’s oxygenated fuels contain ethanol, which loves to absorb water – until it can’t take up any more. Then it turns into sludge that can wreak all kinds of havoc in a fuel system. From clogged fuel filters to pumps to carburetor jets to the tiny holes of fuel injectors, the costs of repairs can add up quickly. Using a fuel treatment that is certified for modern fuels is a good way to make sure your bike runs in top form at the first turn of the key. Look to name brands like Sea Foam or Sta-Bil. Even if you didn’t put it in at the beginning of storage, the treatment can be mixed into the fuel by sloshing the tank back-and-forth. If the tank wasn’t full to begin with, mix it into fresh gas from the pump, then pour it into the tank. Finish with a liberal dose of sloshing.

  • Alexander Pityuk

    I try extremely hard to not think and forget about my bikes during the winter. So no maintenance mid-season for me.

  • Born to Ride

    I thought winterizing your ride meant putting on a layer of thermal underpants? Oh wait, this article must be for the poor miserable souls that don’t have a 365 and 1/4 day riding season. God, how I pity them…

  • Old MOron

    Well, I’d been avoiding this article because I hate maintenance, and because I live in SoCal, anyway. But this is good advice and well-written. Just the other day, I was lamenting that my wear bars are nearing prominence. Aw shucks, I’ll have to get off my ass soon.