Just like the ‘firsts’ of everything we buy or received gifts are so special to us and we cherish those things for lifetime, one of those things, damn close to every motorcycle lovers heart is his first motorcycle. The first motorcycle is something the entire family adores just like the cars and flats. I am pretty sure that as you read the first two lines, you already recollected memories of the day you received the delivery of your first motorcycle. We pay hard earned money to buy a bike but do we care to check it before accepting? Unfortunately, most of us either neglect the checking part or some of us do not know what to check / verify before accepting the delivery of the motorcycle. So here’s a checklist to ensure that you receive a problem-free brand new motorcycle:
- Dents & Scratches – It is pretty easily assumed that a brand new motorcycle will be scratch free but that’s not the case always. The bike could have been mishandled or accidentally brushed against anything during the dispatch from factory or unloading at godowns which can result in scratches or minor dents. A bike with scratches or dents is really unacceptable after all we are paying for a brand new motorcycle.
- Engine Oil, Coolant and Brake Oil – A bike is supposed to undergo pre-delivery inspection by showroom officials before being handed over to the customer. The bikes are dispatched from the manufacturing or assembly unit with all necessary bike fluids like – engine oil, coolant (anti-freeze) and brake oil filled in adequate quantities. However, there is always a scope for human error where the fluid may be filled less than minimum and rarely more than maximum limit. For engine oil and coolant, there are markings on most bikes to identify the maximum and minimum levels. The engine oil can be usually checked from the small glass window on the side of engine. You can also use the dipstick to confirm the same. A coolant level indicator is mostly right beside the radiator or somewhere around the fuel tank on most bikes. The brake oil is filled in the master cylinder near the front brake lever and near the suspension or so in the rear. Make sure that the master cylinder is filled with oil. There may also be possibility of leakages. So let the bike stand steady for sometime on a clean surface to confirm there’s no leakage.
- Brake levers – The brake levers must be firm in their position and they must feel right when you press them. In case they are drooping or loose, immediately bring it to the notice of showroom officials and get it fixed or ask for an alternate motorcycle. There may be a chance that just because of an air bubble or some air trapped in the braking system. You can ask the showroom officials to re-bleed the brakes.
- Radiator Fan – Every motorcycle need not have a radiator. But for those which have one, it is very important that the radiators kick in when required. To check the same, just let the bike run for sometime. A humming sound can be clearly heard as the radiator fan starts running. If not, there is an issue with the fan.
- Air pressure – Now this is one thing that most of us will easily ignore. The air pressure in tyres is not necessarily as recommended. During dispatch, the air may be filled with out much precision. It may be less or more. In most bikes, the air pressure for front and rear tyre is 28 PSI and 32 PSI respectively. So to avoid damaging the tyre, rims and rough ride, make sure you check the air pressure at nearest petrol station.
- Cranking – Since the bike is brand new, it is expected to crank at the first press of self-start. If not, there is high probability that there are problems with battery, ECU or wiring. The bike is supposed to start immediately without any issue. If its taking longer, better get it checked or request for some other vehicle.
- Electricals and Switch Gear – Check if all the switches on the instrument panel and switch gear are working. The horn, headlamps, panel lights and indicators must also be checked.
- Vehicle itself – Sometimes the showrooms do not have a dedicated test ride vehicle. So, they give the ready-to-deliver bikes to customers who insist for test ride. What if the bike being delivered to you was test ridden by people already! Logically speaking, a ridden motorcycle is not a brand new motorcycle anymore. We absolutely don’t know who rode it and how it was ridden. So do not forget to check the odometer reading. Some may argue that it is possible to disconnect the odometer. But you can always check for minute wear-n-tear and overall feel of the handle grip. A bike ridden for several kilometers will have slightly worn off foot pegs.
- Documents – Make sure that you receive the invoices for every single penny you paid for the motorcycle including the accessories. The vehicle has a PUC sticker under the seat or the area for toolbox which is valid for 6 months. Do collect insurance copy on the same day. Just to clarify, the insurance is valid for the motorcycle even before you accept the delivery. One document arrives pretty late – RC book/card. It takes about a month to be delivered to the residence mentioned in the documents.
That’s it. Make sure you tick all the 9 points before you sign any paper to accept the delivery of motorcycle.
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