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Winterizing Your Scooter

Ahhh, autumn! Leaves are turning, the air is cool, crisp and invigorating, and some of the best riding weather of the year is here for us to enjoy. But as the weeks progress, the brisk clear breezes become a cold biting wind. Those colorful leaves are now matting on the road, wet and slippery, making the possibility of unexpected skids a real threat. Numbness nips at our fingers and toes, and no matter how many layers we throw on, it’s just cold and miserable for riding. At this point, you begin to think about tucking your scooter away for the winter, until the weather once again allows you to enjoy your rides. It’s time to winterize.

Is there one absolute way of winterizing? Probably not, but here are some suggested tips that will point you in the right direction.

  • Fill your gas tank (this will help prevent condensation from building up in the tank).

  • Add a fuel stabilizing product such as Stabil to your cold gas tank, using the manufacturer’s recommended measurement.

  • Ride your scooter for 10-15 minutes, to allow the gas mixture to circulate throughout the carburetor and prevent gumming. Again, top off the gas tank.

  • Now for the question of whether to remove the battery. Check with your dealer to see what his recommendation is. We have never removed the battery, but we always attach a trickle charger (such as Battery Tender Jr) to the battery. This device will deliver a slow charge to your battery, and it's smart enough to know how much the battery needs to maintain a charge. It will NOT however, recharge a totally dead battery. We always use the Battery Tender Jr and never had a problem with the scooters starting right up in the spring.
  • Make sure your tires are at the manufacturer’s recommended maximum pressure. This will help to prevent “flat spots” in your tires. Some scooterists recommend that you raise the tire(s) touching the ground off the floor on blocks. If the scooter is going to be stored outside for any length of time, this may be a good suggestion.

  • There is a school of thought that every week or two the scooter should be started up and allowed to run for 5-10 minutes. Again, this is a debatable subject --- some say there is no benefit to running it for a short period of time (others say it just feels good to hear that engine running again!).

  • Give your scooter a good cleaning, removing any road grease, bug remains, etc.

  • Cover your scooter. There are several brands of scooter covers available (check eBay if your dealer doesn’t carry them). Walmart also sells motorcycle covers that may work for your scooter. Us? We just throw on a clean sheet!

  • Go out and give your scooter a pat and a “hello” every now and then, just to let it know it’s still loved!


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