Of course there is no better feeling than getting a full tune-up and having your ride run as good as new. It is a very necessary part of bike ownership and something which you must commit to regularly doing if you want to keep everything running smoothly.
Here we will take a look at exactly what a tune-up entails, how much it should cost, and a few things you can do by yourself to ensure a sufficient DIY motorcycle tune-up. We will also take a look at whether or not is worth it to bring your bike to a professional for a tune-up.
Is a motorcycle tune up worth it?
Buying a bike and getting on the road is a big dream for many. Some though, do fail to consider the fact that regular bike maintenance is a very important feature of bike ownership. Keeping a scheduled check on your bikes condition and having regular tuning-up is key to maintaining your safety on the road.
A motorcycle tune-up is the equivalent to keeping your car regularly serviced. This means that things like your oils levels, brake calibration(learn how to dispose of brake fluid here), and other elements should all be checked. Doing this should help keep you safe, and your bike in the best shape it can be. This is ultimately the reason behind giving you bike a regular tune-up.
Besides this, there may come a time in future where you want to resell your motorcycle to trade up or change it in some way. Getting a regular tune-up is the best way which you can ensure your ride retains its resale value. Prospective buyers will want to know that the bike was well cared for. To that end, you should also try to keep a documented history of your tune-ups.
How Often Should You Get a Tune-Up?
This is another common question, how often should you be thinking of getting a tune-up? The answer here is probably, as frequently as you can afford. It is recommended to have a tune-up at least once per 5,000 miles. Things like engine oil though should ideally be changed every 2,500 miles where you can.
Some other mechanics would also recommend checking and changing these things on a six-month basis, although this really depends on your usage. The standard expectation would be at least once per 3,000-5,000 miles.
This should be more frequent if you are a heavy user, and depending upon the road conditions where you usually ride. As a more experienced rider, this is something which you will also learn to get a natural feeling for.
The parts of your bike which need to be checked will also vary depending upon how long it has been. While engine oil and things like brake pads should be checked and changed with regularity, issues such as brake fluid need only be changed every two years approximately depending upon levels of use.
This can also mean that the cost of your tune up will vary naturally depending on what needs to be done.
How Much a Tune-up Should Cost
As mentioned, there is no particular set cost for your tune-up. It will vary depending on what needs to be done, and which mechanic you are using.
From research and consultation with a number of top bike shops though, it would seem that the cost for a routine tune-up should be around $60-$100. This should include at least an oil change and other general maintenance to keep your motorcycle running smoothly.
Of course if you need other things like filter changes, and spark plugs, the cost will increase accordingly. As regarding a routine oil check and change which is a regular part of a tune-up, the performance level of your bike may also become a factor.
This is due to the fact that high-performance bikes often use synthetic oil. You can expect this to set you back closer to $60 than the $25 which regular oil would typically cost.
You should also pay close attention to the owner’s manual of your bike before bringing it in for a tune-up. This will give you plenty of knowledge about the specifics and performance of your motorbike.
DIY Motorcycle Tune-up
With some fairly basic knowledge, you can certainly do your own motorcycle tune-up. You will just need a few items to get started on your own DIY tune-up. These items can be easily picked up and typically include a tool set with some spanners, wrenches, oil, rags, and WD40. This is plenty for getting you started.
The steps in doing your own DIY tune-up include most of the following for a thorough job:
- Check all of your fluid levels and replace the oil and filters when needed.
- Check your bike battery and give it a charge with your battery tender before putting it back in.
- Check and change your spark plugs where required.
- Examine the tension of your chain before readjusting where required. Spray it with WD40 and clean it down with a strong bristle brush.
- Check your tires for flat spots and wear, changing is needed. Also be sure to check you have the correct pressure.
Once you have checked all of these items, you should be good to go. Give your bike a start and get out on the open road to make sure all of your tasks have been complete and performance is as you like.
A tune-up for your bike does not need to be an arduous and expensive task. Now, not only should you be aware of the cost of your average tune-up and how often it needs to be done, but, if you want to you should also be well placed to try your own DIY tune-up.
This should be everything you need to keep your bike running and in good shape for a long time. At the very least it will help you learn more about how your bike runs, and save you some money in the process.