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Taking Bike out after Winter

Old 03-12-2012, 09:29 PM
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Location: Halifax, NS, Canada
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Default Taking Bike out after Winter

Hey there, last year i purchased a 2002 f4i and only got to ride it for about a month and a half before putting it away for the winter. All i did was fill the tank up and put in fuel stabalizer in it before putting it away. Im about to take it out for the season and want to know everything i should do before riding it. I know i should syphon the gas out and put fresh gas in and i think i gotta change the oil but what else should i do? do i ever have to change the coolant or any other fluids?

Thanks guys
Old 03-12-2012, 10:32 PM
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Change your coolant, bleed/flush the brakes, clean/adjust/lube your chain.
Old 03-13-2012, 02:03 AM
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charge your battery, lube /adjust your throttle and clutch cables, check tires and tire pressure. clean, wax and condition your bike than take a photo.
Old 03-13-2012, 12:16 PM
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If you didn't need a coolant/brake fluid flush last year then if it wasn't riden why would you now? I think that's a bit over board. I've never done more than have a full battery and oil change at the begining of the year. If your bike is up to date on maintence when you put it away, why wouldn't it be a few months later?

Pending where you store it of coarse. Mine's always in a garage on stands.
Old 03-13-2012, 02:32 PM
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I was assuming he hadn't done any maintenance on the bike since he only had it for a month before putting it into storage. Coolant and brake fluid will degrade over time, if the bike has the original fluids in it or you don't know when it was changed last then change them out.
Old 03-14-2012, 08:34 AM
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At the minimum I would change the oil, make sure your battery is fully charged, clean/lube the chain and check tire pressures as well as do a full safety check (same as pre-ride safety check: tire pressure, brakes, signals, horn and lights).

If you don't know the age of or haven't done in over two years: change coolant and brake fluid.

As for the gas, I don't see anything wrong with riding with the current gas. I use stabil and ride with that gas after the winter (my bike only sits for about 4 months, however). Since you are in Canada, I am not sure if the gas is treated vastly different than in the lower 48, but if you feel that it is important to flush and put new gas in, then do it.

Then wash the bike and ride (wax and polish if you have time, but it's not critical)!
Old 03-14-2012, 12:34 PM
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I charge the battery, clean and lube the chain,make sure all my lights work, and make sure all my levers move freely. I usually change my oil before its stored so its good to go come spring.
Old 03-14-2012, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Deekster View Post
Im about to take it out for the season and want to know everything i should do before riding it. I know i should syphon the gas out and put fresh gas in and i think i gotta change the oil but what else should i do? do i ever have to change the coolant or any other fluids?
Just run the gas that's in there if you treated it with a fuel stabilizer - that's what it's for.

You should change the oil BEFORE winter storage, not after. I guess it's better to go ahead and change it now than not at all.

If you didn't keep the battery on a trickle charger then you'll have to charge it before starting.
Old 03-14-2012, 02:54 PM
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Make sure the chain is lubed. Charge battery if necessary. Oil change if necessary. Double check all your major parts for stability, loose bolts, whatever. Check your brake pads, make sure you've got plenty of life. Check your fluids - top off or replace where necessary. Really just do all the basic stuff you'd do normally - nothing will really have changed after stored for a few months.
Old 03-14-2012, 04:27 PM
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This is kind of a schizophrenic thread, it started with spring maintenance and then, elements of "first prep on a new 'used' bike" pop up.

On the original question, you started right with the stabil (and yes, just burn it,
don't bother siphoning). One thing to note (for carbed bikes), add the Stabil then,
run the bike long enough to ensure that it's filled the bowls of the carbs, as well.
Then top it off, so there's very little air-space left. That's to prevent condensation
from forming and contaminating the gas.

The best time for an oil change is at the end of season. The main reason for changing
the oil, isn't lubricity break-down from sheer, it's to flush out the corrosive, hydrocloric
acid that forms in it, as a by-product of water condensation and the combustion process.
You don't want that sitting in the bottom of the engine while it's stored.

I use a battery tender, if the bike is gonna sit for more than a month.
It's cheap assurance of longevity.

The spring prep is a good time for all of the routine maintenance, as a marker
that it is/was done.

Routine maintenance (for me)...chain cleaning/lube/adjustment, air-pressure,
fluid-levels check, lube all of the control cables, lighting check, brake-wear check,
inspection of all seals and bearings and inspect all of the hoses (vacume/fuel/coolant)
for integrity.

In addition, I add Seafoam to the first tank of fresh gas (on carburated bikes).
For that minty-fresh carburator feeling.

Inspecting for loose fastners/bolts/etc. is not a bad idea, either.

New 'used' bike maintenance is all of the above, except instead of checking all
fluid levels, replace them.

If there's anything factory-recommended maintenance for the specific milage, DO IT.
Unless the PO, has a receipt to prove it was done, it wasn't.

Inspect the entire wiring harness. Dis-connect each connector, in turn and use
contact-cleaner on them. Pack them with di-electric grease and re-connect.
Keep an eye out for heat damage as a flag for potential problem areas.
Inspect/lube the switches, as well.

Check for exhaust/manifold leaks.

Overhaul the brake calipers. Check the seals, clean and pe-pack the hanger-pin boots.
Flush/replace the fluid. Consider up-grading to SS lines (yes, it makes that much of a

Often forgotten or done piece-meal, Take the time to adjust all of the controls to fit you.
More blown shifts are from the result of the shifter being poorly adjusted then,
mechanical issues, imo. Where's that brake pedal when you need it?

Hope this helps, Ern

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