Top Tips for Winter Riding, please spare a few minutes to take a look...
- Tyres - ensure good condition and check pressure weekly when they are cold and with an accurate tyre gauge.
- Headlight/s, ensure always clean and bulb/s work for dip and main bean, also make sure they are adjusted correctly.
- Check other lights are working OK.
- Battery - keep well charged if not regularly used. Note at 0°C the output can drop to 60% of full power.
- Clean bike regularly and ensure road salt is washed off. When clean and dry you can spray the bike with water displacing oil like WD40 or similar.
- Ensure brake fluid is changed every 2 years, else it can get water contaminated - NOT GOOD :-(
- The Norwegians say "there is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing".
- Use good quality waterproof clothing, complete with thermal inner linings.
- Keep all armour in your jacket and trousers (just in case) you are more likely to have a spill in winter.
- Heated jackets and gloves are a real boon for winter riding. Heated grips also help to keep hands warm.
- Boots - use good quality boots fitted with waterproof membranes. Clean regularly and treat leather with a saddle soap such as Renapur - it really works well.
- Wear long (up to calf) thick warm socks.
- Neck tubes - It never ceases to amaze how much body heat is lost around your neck. Use a good neck tube which will conserve the heat and stop draughts getting down the front of your jacket.
- Helmet visor - Clean regularly and coat with a water repellent such as Shell Rain-X
YOU AND YOUR BIKE
- Blood sugar level topped up - DON'T leave the house without some breakfast AND keep yourself hydrated!
- Take regular stops on a long journey (every 2 hours or 100 miles at least), stretch/walk and have a hot drink.
- Smoothness is the secret to riding, look well ahead and plan.
- Do not accelerate hard (particularly out of a bend).
- Do not brake harshly, remember ease - squeeze - ease
- If it's particularly icy or snowy ride in low revs and possibly a higher gear.
- Ask yourself if you can avoid or postpone the journey.
- Stay Warm and you will stay more alert.
- Ask yourself: Can I avoid/postpone this journey?