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4 Common Problems With Older Motorcycles and How to Fix Them

Motorcycle parked in front of some rocks

Nothing beats the feeling of speeding down an open road with your bike. However, older machines may need some extra love in order to provide a reliable riding experience. It’s not uncommon for rides to develop problems from time to time. You can take your bike to a mechanic for repairs, but it may help to identify some of these problems and apply fixes for them yourself.

Here are 4 common motorcycle problems and how to fix them.

1) Poor Throttle Response

A poor throttle response could indicate a number of things. You should check your carburetor tuning as well as your engine tuning. Look through the spark plugs, the air filter, and the fuel filter for any signs of blockage or damage. This problem may also be caused by poor quality fuel, so you should see if the problem persists after switching to a different brand. 

Lastly, try checking your acceleration cable. It’s not uncommon for rust to build up on this cable over time, and this can affect your bike’s throttle response.

2) Braking Issues

Braking problems can be dangerous for bikers. Your braking problems may vary depending on whether your bike has drum brakes or disc brakes.

If you are experiencing issues with your drum brakes, the first thing you should do is check your brake cable. Old brake cables can cause issues due to rust or tangling, so you should consider replacing yours if it is old enough.

For disc brake problems, consider checking your hydraulic fluid and whether it is reaching the drums well. In addition to this, you should inspect your brake shoes and whether they need to be replaced.

4) Vibrations or Jerking at High Speeds

Vibrations are part of the biking experience. However, excessive vibrations or jerking can be very dangerous. If you have this problem, you may need to look at each of your bike’s body parts and whether they are connected securely. Lock-tight or other fastener glues should be used to avoid bolts coming loose.

Pay special attention to your seat bolts and whether they are bolted properly. Following this, you should check your suspension and shock absorbers for any issues or defects. If your suspension is oil-based, check your oil levels.

A worn out chain sprocket or chain set can also cause excessive wobbling. Consider swapping out the entire chain set if this is the case.

5) Excessive Fuel Consumption

If your bike is running through fuel much faster than before, consider changing your engine oil. It may also help to tune to your carburetor.

Also check spark plugs for wear or fouling and replace wires if necessary. Older voltage regulators can cause fuel mileage issues and should be replaced if not functioning properly. 

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As you can see, you may run into at least a few problems with your motorcycle during its lifetime. The good news is that many of these problems are relatively easy to fix. 

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