How To Start A Motorcycle That Has Been Sitting? [Easy Hacks]


How To Start A Motorcycle That Has Been Sitting

So, you want to get your old bike back on the track? Many times it takes a lot of effort to re-ride a bike that has been sitting for months or years. But knowing the best tricks, you can get the results fast. If you want to start a motorcycle that has been sitting for a long time, initially, you need to know about its battery and fuel status.

There are also some crucial facts behind which are barriers to starting an idle bike. Usually, if you leave a bike for a few years or months, it doesn’t run easily. When it is an engine or something powered by fuel then the trouble is doubled. Therefore, in this case, you should ensure full effort to get your idle bike on the track.

But just checking these is not the end. Read the full article from beginning to end for detailed information.

11 Steps To Start A Motorcycle That Has Been Sitting For A Few Months:

If your bike has been sitting for 6 months or less, you need to face some hassle to start it. If you leave a bike for more than 3 months, that is a lot of time. Here are some tips to help you get your bike back on track. Here are a few best possible steps to start a motorcycle that has been sitting for 6 months.

Step 1: Go To The Motorcycle And Take Off The Cover

Firstly, go to the place where you have kept your motorcycle for a few months and see what the condition of the bike is. If you keep it in your garage or a separate room, it may not rust.

But if you keep it outside or in any other place where there is contact with water, rust is normal. To restart your discarded bike, first, go to the place where the bike is kept and observe it.

Next, remove the cloth on top for better observation. Remember to wear a face mask and goggles before taking off the covers. Since it has been left in one place for a long time without any supervision, it’s normal for the dust to accumulate here.

If the dust or insects like mosquitoes enter your mouth or eyes, it can cause great damage. So be sure to wear protective material and then remove the cover.

Step 2: Clean The Motorcycle

After removing the covering, clean it thoroughly. First, wipe the fuel tank and other external parts well with a dry cloth. After that, clean the glass and other places where stains are likely to fall off with a damp cloth. In this case, you can use some cleaning agent. This will make cleaning easier and safer.  

Note: Do not use any fabric or object that will stain. Also, do not rub so hard that the paint gets up. Care must be taken to ensure that there is no damage to the finger or the body in any way. Be sure to use a face mask and eye safety goggles.

Step 3: Check The Body Part

Once it is completely clean, check the body part of the bike thoroughly. Check if any part is broken somewhere. You must take a good look at the parts of the bike.

  • Locking System: If you have the bike key, insert it into the lock. And see if it rotates freely. If you turn around, you will understand that there is no dust or grease inside. But if it is stuck in one place, it must be understood that it is jammed inside.
  • Handlebars: Shake the handlebars sideways to see if they rotate naturally. And also see if the grips can be rotated properly. If it works, it is good and if not, change it with a new one.
  • Brakes: It is not uncommon for a bike that has not been ridden for a long time to have problems with the brakes. So press the brake to see if it responds properly or if it is in motion. Observe both front and rear brakes.
  • Clutch and gear: Then check these two things. See if these are doing right or wrong. Because these two are very important. It allows you to gear up and change the movement.
  • Tires: Leaving the bike for 3 to 6 months should not cause any damage to the tires. But it is better to check.  If there is an issue, fix it. Or, change and set good quality tires.
  • Fuel tank: This part is very important.  Make sure that there is no dust or rust in the fuel tank. And if there is any old oil in the tank, leave it and put in new oil.

Step 4: Check The Spark plugs And Filters

No engine can gain and produce power if the spark and ignition chamber is ready. So after cleaning the body parts, go to the spark plugs and filter and clean them thoroughly. To clean them perfectly, you can use a wire brush and fine-grained sandpaper. Thoroughly clean until it is shiny and neatly clean.

When the spark plugs clean deeply, the electrode produces a more powerful spark. Another thing you should keep in mind is to check if the spark is in shape. Damage sparks don’t produce power and do not even provide lower performance.

Step 5: Charge Or Change The Old Battery

The battery of a motorcycle is as important and a considerable thing as the engine. It provides the first ignition so that the engine can run properly. The chances of a good quality battery being damaged in a few months are very slim. However, the charge may be over after keeping it idle for a few months.

In that case, it has to be fully charged to see if it works properly. You can use a voltmeter to test it. If you see the voltmeter give a reading, you need to understand that the battery is well. And if not, you had better change the battery ASAP.

Tips: You can understand the battery is good if it indicates voltage from 12.8V to 13V in the voltmeter. If it shows a lower voltage than the average, you should change your old battery.

Step 6: Replace Old Oil

Fuel or oil is a very important element in driving a motorcycle. Open the fuel tank to see if there is any old oil. If there is, it is mandatory to change it. Because old oil freezes and there is a problem to start.

Also, the bike may not run on old oil. It may expire and cause great damage as well. So try to replace the old oil with new oil. This will allow the bike to move quickly and be free from other risks.

Note: Keep away any kind of fire or dry matter while removing old oil. Failure to do so could result in damage to you and your surroundings.

Step 7: Examine The Fuel Conditions

Older fuels do not make the engine work properly. Also, the fuel can slowly evaporate and cause poisoning with other harmful substances. The engine that has been lying idle for a long time can have various problems. Many times the fuel of your motorcycle can be slowed down and it loses its volatility.

In this circumstance, the engine will not work properly due to bad fuel. This is because the old oil is not as effective in heating and running the engine. So you should check the condition of the fuel well and if it is bad, replace it with a new one.

Step 8: Check And Clean The Carburetor

Now, time to go to the carburetor and check it thoroughly. Give your full attention to this unit. If the carburetor is dirty and filthy, you are less likely to enjoy riding your bike. Moreover, it affects the overall performance of your bike.

Here you can use a bristle brush or dry cloth. Or, carburetor rebuild kits and quality carburetor cleaner will help you out in this circumstance.

Step 9: Check The Fuel Tank And Empty It

Before turning on the fuel tap, make sure you check the tank is rust-free. In the storeroom, there is a chance to change the temperatures which leads to oxidation. After examining the fuel tank deeply, clean it thoroughly. If you don’t clean it, the small particles and other dirt may clog the vents of the carburetor. But I recommend you change the existing oil.

Step 10: Check The Bike Locking System

If you don’t lose your bike key, check that the locking system is OK. If you see that the key has entered the lock properly, you will understand that it is OK.

Even then, my advice is to check with Start once to see if it works properly. And if the key does not enter or does not turn, try again by inserting oil or any lubricant into the locking. It will work. If not, you can put a new lock.

Step 11: Insert Engine Oil

You are now in the final stages of starting the bike. Now, that you have completed the above steps properly, you need to pour your fresh engine oil into the tank. Once you do this, you are almost ready to start the bike again.  Remember, do not start with oil.

Wait a while then start slowly. Additionally, check your bike chain carefully. If it gets rusty, stir it with lubricant. Finally, your bike will be like new again and you will be able to go on a long drive as easily as before.

13 Steps To Active A Motorcycle That Has Been Sitting For A Couple Of Years

Everyone hopes to get their bike back on track which is sited for years after years. But due to a lack of proper direction, it does not happen anymore. Today I will share with you some tips that will help you to ride a bike that has been left behind for a long time like a new one.

Step 1: Take Out The Motorcycle And Rinse It Properly

Leaving a functional motorcycle idle for about 2 to 5 years or even more can make it dirty.  So as a first step, you need to clean your bike well. This will allow you to understand where the problem is with your bike.

Also, you can understand where your bike needs to be fixed or what the issues are. In this case, you can use a cleanser or soapy water.

Step 2: Check The Body Part

Once it is well cleaned, you need to check the body of the whole bike. We have to see if any part is broken somewhere. If any part is broken, it has to be removed. Also, check the brakes, tires, handlebars, pedals, clutches, seats, exhaust cylinders, and other parts. Once checked, those that have become useless should be identified. Separate them and replace them with new ones.

Step 3: Change The Old Battery

The battery of a bike left behind for about 5 to 10 years is not supposed to be good. The battery is of course a very important component of a motorcycle. You can still check the battery voltage to see if it is in good condition. You can see it with the help of a voltmeter.

But from my point of view, I think it would be better to replace the old battery with a new one. This will give your bike a new dimension and make it new.

Step 4: Replace The Fuel Tank

The next thing to look for is the condition of the fuel tank. The fuel tank must be exactly where the fuel is located. After a long time, it may not be good or in exact shape. Old fuel tanks may contain silt or dirt.

Consequently, inserting oil into the fuel tank will not be as efficient and will fail to properly flow the fuel to the engine. For this, it will ruin the internal function and particles may clog the carburetor. In that case, replacing the old fuel tank would be a wise decision.

Step 5: Change The Old Chain

Chain and sprockets are vital parts of any motorcycle. This is why you need to pay extra attention to them. If you seat your motorcycle idle for a long time, it is most likely to lose its shape and efficiency. So make sure you change the chain before starting an idle bike.

Step 6: Change The Exhaust Pipe

The exhaust cylinder is another crucial part that you have to focus on. If the exhaust cylinder becomes useless, no harmful air or dust can be emitted.  This causes them to accumulate inside and get stuck in the piston. Which later damages the engine and soon damages the bike. So it is better to change it as soon as possible.

Step 7: Change The Tires

If you leave the bike or car for a while, its tires get damaged. And if that is 5 years, there is no way to stay well.  Tires are an essential component of any vehicle. But if you leave your bike like this for a long time, the tires may leak.  In this case, there is no way you can ride a bike. So take off the old tires and replace them with good quality new tires.

Step 8: Install New Shocks And Struts

Struts and shocks play a prominent role to keep your motorcycle on the right track. Moreover, they help to get comfort and easier rides on both off-road and highways. But after keeping your bike idle for a year, it may be damaged or useless. So change these as well as change other internal parts.

Step 9: Check And Recheck The Carburetor

The carburetor plays a vital role to supply e fuel or air to the internal combustion engine. So check the carburetor repeatedly and clean it thoroughly.

Make sure there is no dust and fine particles. If it exists, it will not be going to perform well. If you see there is no chance to keep the carburetor running, please change it immediately.

Step 10: Change The Rusty Parts

Replacing all the parts made of iron with new ones will give tremendous results. This will make your bike new. So change all the rusty parts and make the bike look new.

Step 11: Change The Handlebars

Handlebars are the most crucial parts to have a superb ride. If the handlebars are bad, you can’t even hold your bike. So changing them after sitting the motorcycle idle for a long time is a considerable issue. Check the handlebars quite deeply and make sure they are fit. If not, replace them with new ones.

Step 12: Take It To The Garage

As a final remedy, you can take it to the garage. If you fail to restart your bike by following the above steps and tips, you would rather go to the bike shop or garage. They will give your bike a new look. Moreover, they will suggest to you what to do next if you are willing to keep at rest.

Step 13: Start The Motorcycle

After completing all the requirements, now that desired moment has finally come true. At present, it’s your turn to start your bike. However, before starting, make sure that any parts or joints are loose. If there are no loosened parts, you are ready to restart your bike. So enjoy your ride and don’t forget to take care of your bike.

Related Questions:

What Happens To A Motorcycle If It Sits Too Long?

If the motorcycle is left for a long time, its internal structure may change and it may be completely damaged. There is a possibility that the entire motorcycle will be damaged after you keep your motorcycle idle for a decade.

However, sometimes it is seen that if you store properly in the garage, the exterior is good. However, engines, fuel tanks, cylinders, carburetors, brakes, and exhaust systems can be completely damaged. In addition to them, the paint will vanish. In this case, if you want to get your bike back on track, repairing and replacing parts is a must.

How Do You Cold Start A Carbureted Motorcycle That Has Been Sitting For A While?

Making sure the battery is fully charged is crucial to cold-starting a carbureted motorcycle. Another thing must be to look at the choke. When you are going to start your bike at 0 degrees celsius or less, it is crucial to use an electric heater. The electric heater produces heat while the temperature is under 10 degrees celsius.

You need to place it beside the engine to ignite properly. By doing this, you are trying to warm your engine so that it can run freely. You can also start a carbureted motorcycle by turning the petcock or fuel valve. But warming the engine oil for a while is enough to start in some cases. When the engine is warm, the motorcycle will start shortly.

How Long Can A Motorcycle Sit Without Starting?

Generally speaking, a motorcycle can sit for a year or more. But it is not a wise decision to make your bike idle for too long, for instance, 5 years or more. If the motorcycle sits for too long even without a single start, it is probably going bad or damaged. As a result, you can’t start, let alone ride instantly. So, it is ok for a motorcycle to sit for a month or a year.

In some cases, it can be seen that after 1 month of sitting idly, the motorcycle loses its individualism. So how do you expect to get the best result after keeping your motorcycle for 5 years? That being said, you can store your motorcycle for a maximum of one year.

How Long Can Fuel Or Oil Sit In A Motorcycle?

Usually, fuel that already exists in your motorcycle can last not more than 6 months. After 6 months, the fuel isn’t responding well. So it will be a good decision to change the 6-month-old fuel. Therefore, remove old oil or fuel and insert fresh so that you can ride your bike hassle-free.

Can A Motorcycle Sit Without Oil Or Fuel For 3 Months?

It wouldn’t be a brilliant decision to sit or store your motorcycle without leaving oil inside the tank. With oil, it can perform well after you want to start it again. Unfortunately, without oil, the motorcycle engine won’t run as before. And the internal function will be changed if you store or leave your motorcycle with an empty tank.

This is why I suggest you store your bike with some oil. By doing this, your bike will be free from serious damage and keep your engine oily. But when you start it again after a few months, insert fresh oil by removing the old.

Final Thoughts:

No matter what type of motorcycle you have or how expensive your bike is. Usually, if the motorcycle sits for a year or more than a year, it is most likely to be damaged. Maybe its battery has run out or its engine will not work properly. In this case, you need to take proper care and maintain it properly.

In this article, I described all the best possible ways to start a motorcycle that has been sitting for a long time. I hope following them you will get your motorcycle back on the right track. And it will be easier to start your idle bike.

You can also read:

How To Clean Your Motorcycle Air Filter?

What Happens When You Leave Your Motorcycle In The Rain?

Can You Wash Your Motorcycle With Just Water?

Ahsan Ullah

Hi guys, This is Ahsan Ullah. I have been riding motorcycle for more than 15 years. In this long period, I have experienced a lot of things about bike riding. Now I am trying to share my experience with you on this website.

Recent Posts