Ah, fall. The time of year when responsible motorcyclists in snowy climates put their bikes away for the winter, avoiding all those icy, salted roads that will rot your bike’s exhaust out, or skid you into the ditch.
Some North American rider put away their bikes months ago, when there was a cold snap in early fall. Ha! Sissies! For those of us too
lazy hopeful to put the bike away early, it’s actually been a decent fall for riding. Here in eastern Canada, Indian summer came in for early October, and stayed around for a couple of months. But, looking at the forecast, I can see it’s time to put the Battery Tender on the machines, and fill the tanks with fuel stabilizer.
Or maybe not.
The Battery Tender is a good idea, sure, because you never know when the weather might warm up and give you an opportunity for a day or days of mid-winter riding. You want your battery ready to go. Plus, the Tender will prolong its life. But as for the fuel stabilizer, it might not help your bike, despite what you’ve been told for years.
Ryan from FortNine has put together a YouTube clip with some actual science on this, not just the opinionated stuff that used to grace the back-pages technical columns of the print mags. You can see his findings above. Under close scrutiny, the stabilizers don’t actually perform so well. The tl/dr conclusion is, it’s far more important to put ethanol-free gas in your bike—but if you live in a place that winterization is necessary, you should watch the rest of the video to see the breakdown on all the stabilizers.