Storing bike for winter

Information and questions on GL1000 Goldwings (1975-1979)
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Joined: Mon Sep 16, 2013 6:11 am
Location: United Kingdom
Motorcycle: 1979 Honda GL1000KZ

Storing bike for winter

Post by pricey1123 »

Hi all, as I live in the UK winter can limit riding for a few months due to snow, ice and salt on the road so what preps are best for storing my GL1000 away for winter so things don't cease up? Any tips I.E: draining the fuel, keeping battery in a warm dry place etc etc.... Any help would be appriciated :)


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Re: Storing bike for winter

Post by Placerville »

Generally, there are a couple of things that would be considered mandatory. After that, it's all just personal preference.

Obviously, keeping the bike out of the weather and in an enclosed space would be the best thing you could do for it. After that, keeping the battery on an intelligent float charger is considered a good idea. 'Intelligent' chargers will cost at least $50 and are one of the best things you can do for your battery. Excessively marketed float chargers like the Battery Tender are not 'intelligent' chargers and, over time, will end up ruining your battery. You don't need to remove the battery from the bike or disconnect the leads. Simply attach the charger to the posts. However, if your area gets exceptionally cold e.g., below freezing, I'd recommend bringing the battery indoors.

Next, if the fuel tank on your '79 isn't 'lined', storing the bike with a fresh, full tank of fuel is mandatory to prevent rust. Adding Sta-Bil or, better yet, Sta-Bil Marine, to that full tank of fuel is a good thing as it contains properties that address moisture. Draining the bowls is an option but, it's not a 'have to' kind of thing. The fuel will evaporate over time without a problem so, drain them or let the fuel evaporate, it's your choice. (An easy way to drain the bowls, fuel line and filter is to turn the petcock off while the engine is running and let the fuel run out.)

Personally, I use the 'end of riding season' as the time to change all of my fluids. After returning from what I suspect will be my last ride of the season, I dump ALL of my fluids from front to rear. Forks, brakes, oil, coolant and rear end, everything comes out and gets replaced. That way I can start fresh next season.
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Re: Storing bike for winter

Post by WingAdmin »

The Battery Tender is not a float charger, it is actually an intelligent charger. I agree, that a float charger will destroy a battery if left connected and turned on. That said, I have several batteries in my garage (three bikes, one trailer, one generator), all of which have their own Battery Tender on them, and some of them are YEARS old and still working like new.

I tried a cheap float charger on my old lawn tractor battery, it destroyed the battery inside of a week. Never again.

As for winter storage - have a look at Winter Storage Guide
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Re: Storing bike for winter

Post by dingdong »

As wet as it is in the UK, I wouldn't drain the tank. Bare metal in a damp environment is going to rust. I would fill up the tank and use the Stabil as suggested.
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Re: Storing bike for winter

Post by sfruechte »

A few months isn't that long. Fill it up, pour in some seafoam, warm it up, park it. If the battery is old and it will get very cold, take it out so if it freezes and breaks, it won't spill acid all over your bike. Cold won't hurt the battery unless it is dead anyway.

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