READY TO RIDE --
Tim Logsdon of RideNow suggests that this is the time to
"de-winterize" powersports toys.Some simple inspections and
preparations can lead to a safe and reliable riding season ahead. He
offers some valuable tips re: battery maintenance, fuel and oil, and
lubrication and inspection as Arizonans now get ready to rid
By Tim Logsdon
Yes. It is time to "de-winterize" your Powersports toys.
With the best of intentions, I had planned to winterize my PWC
machines last fall, but I never seemed to have the time to charge
batteries or add fuel stabilizer to the tank. But, I learned from
the service team that some simple inspections and preparations can
lead to a safe and reliable riding season.
Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC) and Personal Watercraft
Industry Association (PWIA) have studies showing increasing trends
in cross-ownership of RVs, pleasure boats, and Powersports products
(motorcycles, watercraft, ATVs, and jet boats). Many of our readers
enjoy these Powersports products, and we can all benefit from some
maintenance tips to assure top performance and reliability.
There are many similarities in these machines in terms of drive
train and operating systems, so for those of us who own several of
them, de-winterizing and routine maintenance is similar.
For the Do-It-For-Me crowd, making a service appointment in this
pre-season with your dealer will maintain factory warranties and
assure that all systems are meeting the manufacturer’s
specifications. Another popular alternative is to purchase
maintenance agreements, such as the RideNow PCMP (Preferred Customer
These packages, for new and used equipment, include up to nine
maintenance services across a three-year period as per factory
owner’s manual – and offer up to a two-year extended warranty.
For the DIY enthusiasts, there are some tips to de-winterize.
Basic battery and fuel maintenance, as well as lubrication and
inspection, is essential for a pleasant spring maiden voyage and
full-season riding pleasure.
Adding a quick-connect battery terminal makes battery charging
safe and accessible. These positive and negative connectors are
included in many battery chargers, such as Battery Tender Chargers.
I have a habit of leaving a trickle charger attached to my batteries
Fuel And Oil
If you did not add a fuel stabilizer product when you stored your
toys last fall, you may need to drain your tank and add fresh fuel.
If you fill the fuel tanks after each use, you can avoid
condensation in the tank – and you are ready for your next ride!
Always check the oil-injection system reservoir on 2-stroke
models and check the engine oil level on 4-stroke models at the
beginning of the season and after each use.
Lubrication And Inspection
The best advice is to follow your owner’s manual. My manuals have
maintenance schedules that are easy to follow because systems are
covered separately such as Steering/Control Systems, Cooling System,
Electrical, Propulsion, to name a few.
A good rule of thumb is to "lubricate everything that moves."
This includes cables, all grease fittings for steering/controls,
even seat and storage-bin latches.
All pilots conduct a thorough "walk-around" as flight
preparation. A good tip is to look for anything unusual. Do
you see evidence of any fluid leakage? Check fasteners for loose
Do all controls work smoothly without binding? Is there any
chafing on cables or tubes/hoses?
Always consult a dealer if you are in doubt about possible needed
repairs or maintenance.
And, Some Final Tips —
- Carry an extra drain plug (don’t ask me how I know!).
- Supplement your basic tool kit that came with your product
with extra spark plugs, an adjustable wrench, and tools that you
may need for your trailer or other sports equipment/accessories.
- Carry an emergency tire plug kit and inflation cartridges or
pump for temporary trailer tire repairs if you do not have a spare
- Buy a first aid kit for each of your toys. Always be
As you prepare for this year’s season, you may want to visit the
local RideNow dealers near you or go to
- Town & Country Motorsports – Chandler
- Metro Motorsports – Glendale
- Desert Motorsports – Scottsdale
- YSA Motorsports – Phoenix
- USA Motorsports – Avondale
- Victory BMW – Chandler