Winter Maintenance


The snow is falling and a lot of our riding areas are shut down for at least a little while. What ever are we going to do??

Every year on New Years day, Highland Cycles RIDES!!! This year we rode Peach Valley in about 6 inches of fresh snow! It was AMAZING

Of course if you can’t get out and do that then its a perfect time for some bigger maintenance. Winter is when you need to take apart your bike and really get a good look at everything so you can make sure that when spring rolls around that you have a trouble free season. Here is what we suggest doing while the days are short and the temps are low.

Top end:

You should be replacing the top end (piston and associated parts) every 100 hrs on a two stroke and 150 hrs on a four stroke. Those numbers are based on recreational riders on modern bikes. Of course if you race hard or are on an older machine you might need to do that more often but those are good estimates. The reason it is a great idea to this type of maintenance during the winter is that it gives you a good look at the bottom end of the bike and all the chassis components that you have to take off to get there. Chances are that if you don’t have a brand new bike that you will find more that you need to take care of. Because it is winter that means you won’t be in a big hurry to get it back together and you can take your time to make sure everything is in tip top shape.

Here is an instructional video for a 2 stroke top end that we filmed right here in Highland Cycles. It is on a YZ250 but one of the great things about 2 strokes is that they are basically the same across the board.

We also have a great FREE checklist and instructions for this available here!

Chassis Bearings:

The other big maintenance that we recommend you do during this down time is to clean and grease your chassis bearings. This includes: Swing arm bearings, linkage bearings (if you don’t have a PDS bike), shock bearings, steering head bearings, and wheel bearings. When you do this, you have to pretty much take the entire bike apart and that lets you get up close and personal with all of the bike so you can see if there is anything else you need to tend to. This is great to do in the winter because if some of the bearings are junk and you need to replace them, you won’t be freaking out because the Thursday Night Ride is in a few hours! It is also a pretty big job and messy, so having plenty of time is really nice.

Check out the Gospel of Two Wheels show below where we talk about winter maintenance!

If you do those two things and you address anything you find during them, you should be ready for a trouble free, super duper fun Spring and summer!

Hope this helped and I hope you enjoy all of our stuff. If you do, please share this and subscribe to our Blog.

Have a great winter and we hope you get to ride your DIRTBIKES soon!! If you need some motivation, visit our YouTube Channel below and subscribe to it!!