Nobody wants to harm their motorcycle as it’s a very precious thing for them. But, sometimes knowingly or unknowingly we may be damaging our motorcycle. One of the ways is leaving or parking the motorcycle under the sun. So, in this post, I am going to cover in detail the effects of leaving a motorcycle under the sun, and ways to protect your motorcycle from the sun.
Is it bad to leave a motorcycle in the sun?
Leaving the motorcycle under the sun is not harmful if it happens occasionally. But, if your motorcycle is exposed regularly to the sun for a long period of time then surely it will harm your motorcycle. You risk damage to the motorcycle paint, plastic body, seat, and engine in the long run.
It’s not bad to leave a motorcycle in the sun for a short duration of time. So, don’t worry if you need to park your motorcycle in daylight for some hours occasionally. But, if you need to store your motorcycle in the sun for too long regularly then it will surely affect your motorcycle.
I have discussed the effect of sunlight in detail below. You will surely understand, “Why is it said to not leave the motorcycle in direct sun?”
Effects of Sunlight on Motorcycles
Damages occurring from natural weather change are a slow process. So, you should not worry too much, if you left your motorcycle out in the sun for a few hours in a week.
The damages start to become more apparent and show signs if you left your motorcycle regularly in the sun.
So, What will happen if you leave your motorcycle in the sun for too long? Leaving the motorcycle in the sun for too long risks UV damage to paint, plastic, and vinyl (seats). Although, these don’t become quickly noticeable, after a couple of years you might start to see it.
Here are the damages that could occur by leaving the motorcycle in sun for too long:-
If the motorcycle is left in the sun for too long, then the first and foremost thing you will notice is fading paint.
The shade of the paint will start to fade as the bonds between the paint molecules break because of exposure to the sun’s UV rays for a long time. The color of the plastics will fade more quickly than the metal parts.
You will notice the shade of the paint becomes lighter due to the constant exposure to the sun. The UV rays of the sun also affect the coating of the motorcycle paint. So, make sure to avoid leaving your motorcycle in the sun.
If needed, use a high-quality motorcycle cover to protect the whole motorcycle body before leaving it in the sun.
Damages to Motorcycle Accessories
Most motorcycle accessories are made from plastics, rubber, and artificial leather. Some motorcycle parts are also made from plastics like motorcycle fairing, etc.
These materials are prone to lose elements and break down if left in the sunlight for a long period of time.
Keeping a motorcycle under the sun for prolonged periods can cause the plastic body to brittle. Because of the constant heat of the sun, the seats would also start to develop cracks and tears apart.
Let’s face it, the motorcycle seat becomes fiery and it hurts our bum too much as we need to drive. So, whether the sun damages the seat or not but it does hurt our ass. In order to save it, make sure to put some cover such as clothes, on the seat before leaving it in the sun.
Fuel such as petrol or gasoline has a tendency to vaporize due to heat because heat increases the kinetic energy of the petrol molecules which is directly proportional to the rate of evaporation. Thus, the longer your motorcycle sits and more the heat builds up due to the sun, the more quickly petrol will evaporate.
Apart from this, the evaporated molecules can increase the pressure inside the fuel tank if the fuel cap is sealed completely. So, if the fuel doesn’t get the room to escape it could result in an explosion.
But, these things will not happen because the designers have given vent for escaping the evaporated molecules from the fuel tank.
Damage to tires
The tires are made of high-quality vulcanized rubber which can handle high pressures.
But in the summer the air inside the tires expands a lot because of the heat build-up causing extra pressure on the tire wall resulting in deflating tires or even tire bursts.
If you keep your motorcycle under the sun for a longer period of time regularly then it will shorten the life of tires and cause early cracks etc.
So, as for now, we have discussed many effects of sunlight on motorcycles that could cause serious damage. Thus, we should also know ways to protect the motorcycle, even if we need to part the bike in the sun. So, here it is.
How to protect the motorcycle from the sun?
There are times when you don’t have an option but to park your motorcycle in the open. As motorcycles are the primary vehicle for us, and sometimes we need to park the bike in the sun. So, protecting the motorcycle from the sun becomes one of the crucial tasks for the ride.
Here are a few things, you can do to prevent and protect damage from the sun to your motorcycle:-
The first thing you should always do is, Park your motorcycle in a shady area even if the parking area is at a distance from your destination like under a tree, building, or parking area. Believe me, walking a little bit for your motorcycle will be worth it in the long run. Because a shady area will protect the motorcycle from lots of damages that could have happened if you had parked the motorcycle in the sun.
But let’s face it. what to do if there is no parking area or shady place 100m around our destination?
So, if there is no parking area or shady place around you then also there is no need to worry.
The second thing we can do to protect the motorcycle from sun rays is to use a motorcycle cover.
So, If you don’t have access to the shady area then buy your motorcycle a quality cover and use it to cover your motorcycle in the sun.
Because a motorcycle cover can protect your motorcycle from a hot seat, plastic body from getting brittle, and from fading paints.
As fuel evaporation is an issue if you leave your motorcycle in the sun, make sure that you fill your tank in the evening or after that. The reason is that at this time the temperature of the motorcycle has become low and also the sun has set meaning no more exposure to your motorcycle.
Leaving the motorcycle under scorching is very harmful to humans as well as machines. So, for now, you have learned the things that will save your motorcycle from unwanted risks of the sun.
The best remedy to save your motorcycle from the sun is to park it in the shady area. Even if you need to park the motorcycle some distance from the actual location. Just bear the pain of walking a little distance and that’s all. Because motorcycle cover will not be as effective as the shady area itself.
Thanks for reading the article, stay tuned with MotorcycleMonarch to read more interesting articles.