Mutt Motorcycles

Tricks of the trade when riding through autumn

Autumn is upon us and darker days are fast approaching, so it's time to bust out the underlayers and hoodies. Riding in autumn offers less-than-perfect riding conditions and can be a bit daunting for new riders, so we've collated a few useful tricks of the trade for you so you don't get caught out!

Scroll down to see our 9 top tips for autumn riding...

Top 9 tips for riding in autumn

1. Check/readjust tyre pressure

Granted riders should be checking their tyre pressure every time they sit in the saddle but the truth is a lot of riders forget. The drop in outside temperature could leave you surprised with how low your tyre pressure has got - so it really is crucial to check your tyre pressure before you set off. Another thing to check is your tyre's tread. With winter fast approaching, you could find yourself in serious trouble if you're riding with bald tyres - not to mention points on your licence.

2. Pack some spare bulbs

With those darker nights coming into full swing you'll want to make sure you can always see the path ahead. One of the worst positions to be in is to be riding blind. Don't be caught in the dark. Storing one or two bulbs under your seat in bubble wrap could get you out of trouble!

3. Watch out for leaves

With autumn in full swing, you'll tend to see more leaves and natural debris on the road. Take extra care when going over piled-up leaves as you don't know what lies beneath them. For all you know there could be a puncture waiting to happen, or worse, an oil spill! It's always best to slow your speed and go round congested areas best you can.

4. Put the dark visor away

It can be really awesome to whip out the dark visors during the summertime - they look cool and serve a purpose. Throughout autumn you get shorter days, and what may have been a pleasant afternoon ride could quickly become a trip in the dark. Make sure you equip yourself with a clear visor in your bag or better yet, just use the clear visor until the next riding season begins. It is possible to get points on your licence if your visor decreases your visibility dramatically and the police can pull you over for this offence.

5. Dry warmer clothing

As it gets a little colder waterproofs and warmer clothing are essential in getting you to your destination comfortably. There's a substantial amount of clothing on offer, all with fantastic features such as crash protection, high visibility, inner lining and heated accessory compatibility. Be prepared for the colder nights of autumn with a new set of biker trousers or comfort neck tubes.

6. Pin locks and rain repellent

If you haven't already got a pin lock on your helmet, they are incredibly useful and some riders would say essential. A pin lock insert is made from a moisture-absorbing material that is secured to the visor with pins to create an air-tight chamber. This material reacts like a sponge to moisture in the air before it can settle and start fogging your visor. Another essential is rain repellent spray, made to enhance clear vision - this keeps the water running off your visor rather than gathering on top.

7. Squeaky clean chain

Chain maintenance should be an ongoing thing for any rider, however, some riders fail to realise the importance of a healthy chain. A poorly cared for chain can lead to damaged links, rust and hard points - causing the chain to snap and damage your motorcycle in the process. It is important to clean dirt off of your chain regularly, degrease it, dry it, and then apply new lube or oil. During the colder months there tends to be more grit and dirt out on the roads which will lead to dirty chains/belts.

8. Watch out for wildlife

Most wildlife is nocturnal, meaning they come out at night when there is little lighting. With the autumn evenings drawing sooner, this means animals will be out earlier than usual - take extra care when you are riding and keep your eyes peeled. If you see wildlife out on your travels, slow down and try to get them off to the side of the road.

9. Check the weather

Weather conditions can be somewhat unpredictable in autumn... one minute it's dry and sunny then the next it's cold and wet. Keep an eye on your favourite weather app and only ride in safe conditions. If you are new to riding, maybe try to stay off the bike in stormy rain. Don't forget - if you own a newer motorcycle with ride modes, be sure to activate Rain Mode for maximum traction control.

Need more advice?

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