With winter now well and truly over (thankfully!) we thought we’d ask our followers if they’d had their bikes registration ‘on hold’ through the colder months. Turns out, you’re a hardier bunch than we expected!
Our Facebook Poll is growing from month to month, which is awesome to see! We really enjoy reading your comments and seeing how many people are voting each way, painting a picture as to the mindset of Kiwi motorcyclists. This time around, we asked you whether you park your bike and put your registration ‘on hold’, or if you keep it up to date and continue riding through winter.
As expected, a lot of the comments followed the theme of Ross’, saying, “Yes, I put my bikes on hold over winter due to harsh frosts in Central Otago, and the resulting grit.” Yep, we’d probably be a bit shy of riding in those conditions, too! Lots of riders from the deep south do still keep their bikes ‘live’ during the winter though, so they can happily enjoy the rare sunny days when they occur. It’s hardly an excuse if you live in Auckland or even further north though, as the climate up there still tends to be pretty warm by comparison.
Other riders (don’t worry, we won’t name names!) prefer to ‘run the gauntlet’ and continue to ride even with their registrations on hold – one comment even reads, “Checked with my insurance and I’m still covered without rego, so I’m happy to save the extra $$.” Interesting!
Yes, the cost of keeping a 601cc+ bike registered for 12 months of the year is an eye-watering $585.94 minimum. That’s nearly $50 a month, just to keep the government and ACC happy.
Okay, talking about the seemingly extortionate ACC levies that are attached to registration fees is opening a big can of worms, which I hardly need to go into here. Let’s just agree, bike rego is expensive. So, we think it’s fair that riders ‘manage’ their motorcycle costs as best they can. Riding without rego, though? Maybe that just seems like inviting unnecessary trouble into your lives…? Remember, the shortest period you can put your bike rego ‘on hold’ is for three months. If you update it before those three months are up, you’ll be forced to backpay from when it expired!
From a total of 505 votes, over two-thirds clicked on the ‘No, I ride all year round’ option, and most of the ‘Yes, my rego was on hold’ comments indicating that they either had multiple bikes (alternating which one was being used and which one was on hold), or just because the snow was too deep. Fair enough too! Something to consider though, if you have had a bike hibernating for three or more months, firstly I hope you had the battery hooked up to a battery maintainer, or you might be in for trouble when you do go to start it up again!
Secondly, it’s probably a good idea to change the bikes fluids before you do go for a ride, as the engine might have built up a lot of condensation internally – meaning you engine oil is most likely due for replacement. Even brake fluids and suspension fluids are susceptible to water contamination from condensation, which prevents it from doing its job effectively. Be safe, change it out, and keep your bike happy!
Refresh Yourself Too
One last important factor to consider, if you haven’t been on a bike in three or more months, you’ll be a little shaky at first, too. I know we keep bringing it up, but the start of the riding season is an awesome time to consider getting some proper rider training – there are stacks of providers out there, and Ride Forever courses are cheap as chips.
You’d be surprised what you’ve ‘forgotten’ since your last ride, so some training will get you back into the swing of riding again in a safe and controlled environment. Chances are you’ll pick up some new skills along the way as well! Even if you have been riding through winter, with summer quickly on its way, the roads are going to be even more inviting, begging you to ride quicker, for longer, and more often – maybe you should look into some track-based training beforehand and refresh your mind and body what it feels like to get the best performance out of your bike!