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You may have questions about your motorcycle if the elements outside get too wild. It’s hard to predict what the weather can do to our belongings.
Wind can be difficult to calibrate. The grass may be swaying in a breeze, but the next moment you see tree branches flying by your window. It’s common to question the impact wind can have on a motorcycle.
Can wind blow over a motorbike parked on its side? Wind can blow over a motorcycle that is parked. The size and position of the motorcycle, as well as its weight, will all play a part in how the wind blows. The average 400 pound motorcycle can blow over starting at winds that are 50 – 60 miles per hour.
Seeing a motorcycle tipped over on it’s side looks a bit unnatural. It’s one thing to accidentally let it happen while you’re handling it and it’s another when mother nature decides to push it over. This guide will show you how to prevent this from happening, as well as provide information about wind and your bike.
When It’s Possible For Wind To Blow Over A Motorcycle
Wind is an interesting phenomenon. It’s an element that we are unable to see but can certainly feel. While it can be a welcomed sensation on a hot, sunny day, it can also bring a lot of devastation if it’s powerful enough.
Wind can do a lot of damage. One example of such damage is a parked motorbike. Many motorcyclists believe that it’s not possible for wind to blow over a motorcycle unless you’re in a category 5 hurricane; that’s simply not true. Though the wind does need to be blowing hard, it’s best to know at what point your motorcycle is at risk.
An average motorcycle weighs about 400 pounds. When wind is blowing at 50-60 mph, your motorcycle can be blown over. This is, of course, a very average situation and the point of when a motorcycle blows over in the wind depends a lot on the size of the motorcycle, what it’s using to keep it up in the first place, and how much the wind is blowing.
A motorcycle that is smaller and lighter than the motorcycle it replaces has almost the exact same chance of being blown over by the wind. The light weight makes it easy for the wind to tip it because there’s really not much anchoring it down.
Big and bulky motorcycles almost act as a sail since it has more surface area blowing against it, so it’s an easy target for wind. There are two types of motorcycles that fall between these categories. The amount of wind required to blow them over will vary.
According to the National Weather Service you can start to see structural damage in houses at around 43 miles per annum. This can lead to chimney caps falling off, shingles blowing away and side panels being torn. When wind speeds exceed 55 miles an hour, trees can become rooted and serious damage to buildings occurs. Some damage can be done when winds reach the low 60 mph range.
If you notice it’s a windy day outside, take extra precautions and check the weather and see exactly how much the wind is blowing. To prepare for possible higher winds, it is important to take safety precautions if the wind speed exceeds 40 miles per hour.
What the Wind can do to your Motorcycle
When you think about the damage weather can do to a motorcycle, wind is probably the last thing on your mind that you’re thinking about. People assume that rain or snow are the worst weather for bikes.
Although rain and snow can cause severe damage to a motorcycle, wind can cause even more damage. People don’t realize that their motorcycle can blow over in the wind; they assume since it’s a small yet heavy vehicle, their motorcycle is immune.
The first and main issue you’ll have to worry about is cosmetic related if your motorcycle ends up blowing over. A situation like this can lead to things such as a scratched pump, scratched crank case or bent handlebars and foot pegs. Luckily, that’s usually the only damage that’s done if you discover quickly your motorcycle is on it’s side.
If your motorcycle was blown over and you didn’t realize for a few hours, you may run in to some issues with the engine. When a motorcycle is on it’s side for too long, oil can start seeping into the combustion chamber which will cause issues with the fuel and air combustion that happens in those chambers.
Since there’s too much material and not enough space for air to get in, your motorcycle may not run. This phenomenon is called hydrolock. For more information about what happens to a motorcycle when it lays on it’s side, see my article here.
You can use a disc lock alarm to alert you if your motorcycle is being driven over by the motion of the bike. The disc lock alarm that I recommend can be found in my list for motorcycle security.
Outside of what happens to your motorcycle if it blows over, if winds are high enough to blow it over in the first place there’s probably a lot of other materials floating around that can damage it.
It is possible for trees to start rooting at speeds of up to 55 miles an hour. You might have chairs, shingles or trampolines, trees branches, or other large objects that could blow around and hit your motorcycle. This will usually only cause cosmetic issues, but these items can cause more cosmetic damage to a motorcycle than it would with a motorcycle simply blowing over on to it’s side.
How to Prevent Wind from Blowing over Your Motorcycle
You can still take preventative measures to minimize the possibility of your motorcycle getting blown away by strong winds.
Keep it safe!. This could be your garage, shed, or home. A lot of people don’t have those resources so they need to get a bit creative.
When your motorcycle needs to be parked outside due to a severe wind storm, you need first to consider the direction that the wind is blowing. Put down your motorcycle’s kick stand and have the motorcycle leaning in the same direction as the wind. The wind will push the motorcycle against a kickstand, giving it a better chance of staying up.
Because wind can change direction at any moment, it is so unpredictable. You might also consider attaching a brick or cinderblock to the kickstand.
I don’t recommend you put the kick stand on top of the cinder block, rather I suggest you put the cinder block on top of the kick stand and tie them together. This will decrease your chances of the motorcycle blowing over if the wind decides to change it’s direction.
You can park your motorcycle near a wall or building, if you are able. This will reduce the wind blow and act as a prop to hold the motorcycle up (at most on one side). You may also consider mounting your motorcycle on the ground. You can accomplish this by connecting four tow straps to each corner of your motorcycle and attaching them to the ground.
How to Ride a Motorcycle in High Winds
Sometimes, you may find yourself in a dangerous situation. If this is your case, parking your motorcycle isn’t going to be your only problem. Getting home in such conditions isn’t easy.
It is a good idea to leave your motorcycle in a safe place and let someone else take you to a car. Riding a motorcycle in winds strong enough to blow your motorcycle over isn’t safe.
If getting a ride isn’t an option, proceed on your motorcycle with caution. Prepare to be tossed about a little by the wind. Slow down but maintain a steady pace. You may have to lean in the direction the wind blows from.
Keep an eye out for large objects in the air and on the roads. If your body starts to feel tired, you can pull over and take a break. You want to be in complete control of your body in such situations without losing strength.
Is it safe for a motorcycle to be driven in a lightning storm A motorcycle ride in a thunderstorm is dangerous. Your risk of lightning strikes will rise because you touch the vehicle. For more information, click here.
Can wind knock over a motorcycle when it’s being ridden? Wind can blow over motorcycles while they are being ridden. It is important that a motorcyclist knows how to handle wind so getting knocked over doesn’t happen.