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Bikers Gear Up & Ride Safe With NAPA

Home Garage Motorcycle Maintenance Starts at NAPA

Bikers Gear Up & Ride Safe With NAPAwoman on a motorcycle

There’s nothing like riding a motorcycle. The rush of the wind, the husky growl of a powerful engine and the thrill of executing calculated maneuvers on an agile machine. Life offers few experiences that provide the same adrenaline rush. But the thrills that make motorcycle riding so exciting are the same thrills that make motorcyles one of the most dangerous forms of transportation. 

NAPA has remained a reliable source for motorcycle parts and gear for a century, and we want to help you safely and successfully experience the joy of riding on two wheels. Whether you’re a novice motorcycle rider or a veteran of two-wheeled travel, let NAPA help you prioritize safe motorcycle ownership both on the road and in the garage. 

A go-to, pre-ride safety checklist is a great place to start when it comes to safe motorcycle riding. Before you set out, take time to review the Governors Highway Safety Association motorcycle laws in your state. Then, go through the following checklist carefully. If you notice any problems with your bike or your safety gear, make other transportation arrangements. Don’t try to ride if there are issues with your gear or your bike needs repairs. 

Motorcycle Pre-Ride Safety Checklist From the NAPA Experts

1. Perform a thorough motorcycle inspection

  • Start with the wheels. Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Always keep a small digital tire gauge in your saddlebag or under your seat. Check the tread of the tires for wearing, cracking and any debris that you may have obtained. 
  • Check the brake levers, brake line and the meat on your brake pads.
  • Check the chain/belt. Use a soft-bristled brush to clean any mud or debris caught in your motorcycle chain and ensure it’s properly tensioned and lubricated. If your bike uses a belt, ensure there are no cracks in the ribs.  
  • Check the motorcycle battery and connections and plus away any corrosion. 
  • Check your motorcycle oil level.

2. Make the proper riding adjustments

  • Your bike should fit your body well, so you don’t have to lean too far forward or back while riding. 
  • Ensure mirrors, handlebars and controls are easily accessible and visible.

3. Check your helmet and safety gear

  • Most states in the U.S. have laws requiring motorcyclists to wear helmets. When selecting a helmet, make sure it’s DOT-certified.
  • Always check that your helmet is free of cracks or warping and that the straps fit snugly. 
  • Always wear a jacket and long, sturdy pants. If you’re riding with a reinforced jacket, make sure that all the plates are inserted before you ride.

4. Stay visible and audible

  • Check your headlights and taillights before you ride. Engage the flashers to check that they are functioning and check that your headlight’s high beam is working. 
  • Make sure your motorcycle horn is working. I is sometimes difficult for drivers to see a motorcycle rider in traffic, so a horn is a great way to practice defensive riding.
  • Consider wearing bright colors in the dark and keep a safety vest in your bike’s storage to put on over your clothes when visibility is poor at night or in the rain.

5. Prepare for long trips

  • If you’re going to ride across long distances, especially in cooler or wet weather, plan ahead and study your route. Consider investing in a Milwaukee Tool heated jacket and handlebar warming mitts for those long hauls. 
  • Take frequent breaks. Riding on a motorcycle for long distances is exhausting, which takes a toll on your awareness. Avoid fatigue by pulling over for breaks to stretch and get rehydrated. 

Home Garage Motorcycle Maintenance Starts at NAPA

If you’ve ever wondered how to start tackling your own motorcycle maintenance at home, you’ve come to the right place—your one-stop shop for motorcycle parts online. Not only does offer a wide range of aftermarket motorcycle parts and cool motorcycle accessories, we also carry the best garage accessories and motorcycle tools to help get you started working on your bike at home. 

Starting with basic hand tool assortment, your at-home motorcycle workshop should also include a motorcycle lift like this Carlyle Professional Motorcyle Lift featuring a foot-activated pump and release pedal delivers for  hands-free operation. It can withstand up to 1500-pound loads and includes an integrated lock, which adjusts and fastens at different heights. The non-slip rubber pads keep the frame of your bike scratch-free, and the release pedal incorporates a metered control system so you never risk dropping your bike too fast. For clutch repairs, consider equipping your motorcycle workshop with a clutch holder tool. These handy tools allow you to hold your clutch basket stable during repairs. Additionally, never underestimate your need for reliable drain pans when performing vehicle or motorcycle repairs. And, even the most upright mechanics need a good creeper seat to stay organized and take a load off once in a while. 

When it’s time to hang up your helmet and store your bike for a long period of time, you should consider a battery trickle charger and maintainer. These systems ensure your motorcycle battery life is extended by preventing both overcharging and loss of power. This NAPA 12-volt/6-amp Battery Maintainer features a nine-stage charging program, which maintains voltage, and an easy-to-read LCD screen to provide all the info you need. Most importantly, keep your motorcycle covered while storing it over long periods so it stays free of moisture and dust. 

Proudly serving as your motorcycle parts store, you can find everything you need to maintain your bike and stay safe on the open road at NAPAonline. Now you can Get Up & Go faster than ever at participating NAPA Auto Parts locations. We offer a convenient Buy Online, Pick Up in Store option so you can get back on the road in no time. Or, check out our Free One-Day Shipping on more than 160,000 items! 

Featured image courtesy of Pixabay.

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More than 90 years ago, the National Automotive Parts Association ("NAPA") was created to meet America’s growing need for an effective auto parts distribution system. Today, 91% of do-it-yourself customers recognize the NAPA brand name. We have over 6,000 NAPA Auto Parts Stores nationwide serving all 50 states with a unique inventory control system that helps you find the exact part that you need.

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