Riding a bike in the cold can be an exhilarating experience. This is due to the fact that as the weather cools, bike enthusiasts are enticed to hit the road in order to break up their monotonous routines.
However, as thrilling as riding a bike in the cold may appear, it can be dangerous at times. Yes, having dependable bike insurance claims coverage comes in handy in these situations, but filing claims for minor damage to your bike isn't always a good idea.
We recommend following basic winter riding recommendations to ride safely and avoid filing a bike insurance claim. Here are some winter riding safety tips to help you avoid bike insurance claims.
Dedicated bike aficionados don’t let bad weather deter them from riding their bikes. Come hell or high water, you are bound to see at least one biker determined to make his way through the elements. Winter is a season of cold weather, chilly winds, and depending on where you are—fog, smog, and maybe even snowfall.
Since winter doesn’t last that long in India or get as cold as in Western countries, bikers may get lax about winter conditions. However, it is due to these unique conditions that accidents can occur. Here are some tips to keep you safe and prevent you from needing to file a bike insurance claim.
Riding tips to keep you safe in winter:
1. Layer up:
Riding a two-wheeler in winter is exhilarating and also, very cold. On a bike, you are completely exposed and the cold wind can cut through your clothing like a hot knife through butter. The solution is to layer up on your clothing.
This means wearing gloves on your hands to prevent your fingers from freezing. Wear a good warm jacket and even thermal clothing underneath, if needed. The top layer of your clothes should be wind-proof.
Smart Tip: And if you live in areas prone to rain or snow during winter, choose a waterproof outer layer. This would help you stay warm and help you concentrate on your ride; which in turn would avoid accidents and claiming bike insurance!
2. Beware of visor fog:
When you are riding at high speeds in winter, fog can build up on your visor, blocking your vision and putting your life at risk.
Smart Tip: It may be a good idea to keep your visor open and instead wear a scarf or a balaclava to protect the exposed parts of your face and neck. You can also choose to get an anti-fog coating visor or coating for your helmet.
3. Get to know your bike:
You may be used to riding your bike during the long summer season, but it may require more care and different handling when exposed to a cold winter. Read your bike’s instruction manual to check if this is the case. For example, it might need tires that grip better in cooler temperatures.
Smart Tip: Changing your tires on a timely basis might help prevent an accident leading to the start of a claim process for bike insurance.
4. Ride smartly and safely:
You may feel tempted to speed down roads but avoid doing this in winter. The presence of dew or icy conditions on road surfaces can make your bike skid causing you to lose control. If there is a lack of visibility, keep your headlights on. Ensure they are clean and that the visor on your helmet is clean and unscratched.
Smart Tip: If you regularly ride your bike in low-visibility conditions, wear high-visibility clothing so that other people can see you. This would surely save your bike from accidents and you ending up raising a claim for your bike insurance!
5. Carry out safety checks:
It is crucial to carry out safety checks in winter before starting a journey. Check your bike’s tyres, controls, lights, oil levels, and chassis. If it is very cold, you might need to run your bike’s engine for a few minutes to warm it up before starting.
Smart Tip: Remember to get the tyre pressure regularly checked in winter so that they are at the right level.
6. Know the road and when to stay off it:
If you are travelling in an unfamiliar area, check the route beforehand. You don’t want to be stranded in an unknown location without a working GPS.
Smart Tip: Print the route or download it on the Map app on your phone. Cold winters might have bad signals due to snowstorms as well.
Being aware of the route keeps you alert for any sudden turns and so on. Even when it comes to familiar routes, you should know when to avoid riding your bike on it. Weather conditions can make a known route dangerous for two-wheelers.
Smart Tip: Be smart, check the local weather and the news, and make a wise call.
7. Don't Forget To Bring Your Tools
Make a pit stop at the mechanic before embarking on your long-awaited road trip to ensure that you have all of the necessary tools. Keep in mind that every bike has specific needs, such as a spare tube, brake cables, and a spare tube. We understand your excitement, but remember to write them down before you leave.
8. Breaks are Necessary
It is critical to take breaks while travelling, not only for your own sake but also for the sake of your motorcycle. It is recommended that you stop every few kilometres to inspect the bike's condition, such as the fuel level and tyre pressure. This does not, however, imply frequent stops, as this would result in a lengthy journey to the destination.
9. Keep the tires properly inflated
When the temperature drops, pay special attention to the bike's tyres. Cold temperatures cause air pressure to drop, resulting in a few PSI losses from both of your bike's tyres. With every 10 degrees drop in temperature, the pressure drops by one or two PSIs. Tires that are properly inflated not only improve ride comfort but also improve mileage.
In addition to adhering to the aforementioned guidelines, it is critical to ensure that you and your bike are covered by a reputable bike insurance policy. This is because, no matter how many precautions you take, there is always the risk of an accident, which could jeopardize both your health and your savings.
Many bikers race their bikes as if they are participating in the MotoGP. But there is a time and place for such activities. Don’t risk your health, your life, and your bike unnecessarily. That said, sometimes, no matter how cautious you are, accidents happen, which are out of your hands. So ensure that your bike insurance policy is up-to-date. Check the status of your two-wheeler insurance online and, if needed, renew it online as well.