It is important to avoid neglecting the storage requirements of the vehicles on your showroom floor, garage or warehouse. This is a point that is all too often forgotten until that embarrassing moment when a potential buyer turns the ignition key and presses the starter, only to be greeted by the impotent clicking of a starter relay or a foul running engine.
Given the economic reality we are facing, vehicles may sit on the showroom floor a bit longer than in the past. Here are some tech tips to keep your showroom inventory in working order for the foreseeable future.
When a bike first arrives at your dealership or shop, there are always a slew of tasks to complete before it can go out onto the showroom floor. New bikes are removed from their crates and then set up to the manufacturer’s requirements. Used bikes have to go through a process of cleaning, inspection and maintenance prior to flooring.
Do not waste the time and money spent on prep work to this point. Make sure the flooring process involves these steps to ensure that those newly assembled or freshly serviced machines stay fit and functional after weeks or months on the showroom floor.
Perform these steps if the bike will be sitting for more than two weeks.
Drain the fuel from carburetors. If someone test rides the bike but decides not to buy it, drain the carburetors again. Make sure the person draining the carburetors has the correct tools to avoid damaging the drain screws and is aware the screws only need to be tightened gently. It is better to take this quick step and hope it sells the next day than let it sit for months with fuel in the float bowls.
Add fuel stabilizer to a full tank of gas. Read and follow the instructions for whichever brand or type of fuel stabilizer that you use. Check the tire pressure regularly. Clean and polish machines so they stay looking good and dust free.
Remove the battery. Mark the battery with the last six digits of the VIN number of the motorcycle so that it can be returned to the correct bike. Store the batteries off the floor in a cool dry place. Keep the batteries charged using a battery tender. Check the voltage of the batteries every six months to make sure they are still usable. For new units, maybe wait until a potential buyer shows interest before prepping the new battery.
If the vehicles in your showroom have been neglected for some time, don’t worry. There are steps to take to revitalize the condition of your inventory. Follow these steps to get a motorcycle back to proper condition when it has been sitting on the showroom floor for longer than one month without being properly prepped for flooring.
Drain the fuel system from the fuel tank down and don’t attempt to start a vehicle with old gas. If you gamble with old gas, you’re risking spark plug fouling, which will only cost more in time and money. Depending on the type of spark plug, they can range from a couple bucks to more than $20, not to mention some can be difficult to access.
Remove the battery and test it. Recharge the battery and see if it will hold a charge. If the battery has discharged too far, it will have to be replaced.
Remember to perform these steps throughout the year. Don’t let the busy or slow season leave you with a fleet of dead vehicles and flat batteries. Keep a record of how long the bikes in your showroom have been sitting without use.
Using these tips will help prevent frequent battery replacements as well as paying for service work that could have been avoided. That alone will help strengthen your bottom line. Furthermore, having a plan to get your vehicles up and running all year round contributes to an appearance of professionalism that any potential buyer will appreciate.