Harley Davidson maintenance: tips, schedule, plan and costs

Harley Davidson is a brand known for its quality and performance, but as with anything, to ensure you get the best from your motorcycle, you need to give it regular maintenance.

Harley Davidson motorcycles require the same level of maintenance as many other motorcycle brands. They come with a recommended servicing schedule that involves numerous components, to keep your ride at peak performance.

Maintenance tips

Conducting prompt and proper maintenance will help keep your motorcycle in prime condition. While you should get your motorcycle serviced by professionals, there are some small bits of maintenance you can perform yourself between servicing to keep your motorcycle in top condition.

When performing maintenance yourself, check the manual for instructions on how to service your motorcycle properly. Some maintenance tasks you can perform yourself include cleaning the battery terminals, checking for dripping fluid, and examining pivot points and moving parts for signs of wear. If you’re unsure, then it’s always better to leave to a professional, to ensure you don’t accidentally cause a bigger problem that will then cost more to fix.

While you may be tempted to save on costs where you can, you don’t want to risk using sub-par parts on your motorcycle. This could cause damage to your motorcycle, leading to increased repair costs. Make sure to invest in quality tools and parts from a reputable dealer.

Wear and tear are inevitable, but riding irresponsibly may result in additional damage to your bike, as well as yourself. Hard riding will cause wear more quickly, avoid riding the clutch or braking hard, as this causes premature wear, and may damage other parts.

Carefully consider any modifications you make to your Harley Davidson motorcycle. Modifications to your motorcycle can put extra strain on components such as brakes and suspension, this may result in more money spent on replacing parts.

Maintenance schedule

Any motorcycle needs proper maintenance and upkeep to ensure it keeps running at optimum performance. Harley Davidson motorcycles come with a service manual that will outline the recommended maintenance schedule you should adhere to.

This manual contains the necessary maintenance tasks to be performed and provides a timeline, so you know what maintenance needs to be done at certain mileage milestones, or intervals.

Milage will determine what particular service your bike requires, with periodic servicing recommended every 5,000 miles.

Common maintenance required includes engine oil and filter change, transmission fluid change, primary fluid change, air filter inspection and replacement, spark plug inspection and replacement, suspension inspected and adjusted, and more. This is why getting your motorcycle serviced at specified intervals is crucial.

Plan for your service appointment

Keep your maintenance schedule in your calendar so you know when you’re due for your next one. This will help you arrange for dropping off your motorcycle and make sure it doesn’t coincide with any road trips you may want to take.

It may be a good idea to keep track of when you’re due for your next service so that you can plan for long rides or cross country road trips after you’ve had your motorcycle serviced and it is in top condition.

Services can take between 2 to 10 hours and are generally carried out within a day. This should make it easy for you to plan for your service appointment to fit within your schedule.

Cost of a service

A Harley Davidson motorcycle is an investment, so you want to make sure you look after it properly. As maintenance is a crucial aspect of motorcycle ownership, it’s important to work it into your budget so you aren’t tempted to skip an appointment.

The cost of your maintenance appointment can depend on whether you take your motorcycle to a dealership or an independent repair shop. Dealerships can often charge more than independent repair shops, but generally offer additional services, such as after-hour support

When you take to a dealership, you can be confident they are well trained to detect any faults or potential issues

Cost can also depend on where you are within your service schedule, some appointments may be more costly depending on what maintenance is performed. Keep in mind that if you don’t keep up with your maintenance schedule, you could end up looking at much higher costs later on to repair or replace a damaged part.