Knowing Your Gear: How to Determine a Used Motorcycle’s True Worth?

Riding a motorcycle can be one of the greatest joys in life. Being on a bike is a mixture of exhilaration, pleasure, and relaxation all layered over with adrenaline. You will be able to feel the road under you as you lean into the corners, and smell the warm sun baking the pavement. However, before you get to experience the life-changing intensity of riding a motorcycle, you’ll need to get your hands on a bike.

Buying a used motorcycle is a great way to find a beautiful machine that’s in a top-notch condition that won’t break the bank. However, it can also be an excellent way to get ripped off if you aren’t careful. When you’re trying to find used motorcycles to lay some cash out for without getting a lemon, follow these tips:

Understand what you’re looking at

It’s hard to put a price on something if you aren’t sure what it is. Research the bike you want before you go out and start putting down offers. Understand how a specific bike should sound and behave so that you know if you’re looking at an issue that’s going to set you back financially or just a common quirk for that particular model.

Know the value of aftermarket parts

Buying used means that you could get your hands on the aftermarket parts you want–without having to pay upfront for them. However, you’ll want to know what value these aftermarket parts add to the bike and what value they are to you. Unfortunately, some sellers think that aftermarket parts are worth the same installed on the bike as they were in the shop. Things that are guaranteed worthwhile though are things like a good exhaust system (and you can check out some of the best motorcycle exhaust brands here), a fresh oil change, and new tires.

Know how many miles are too many miles

The used motorcycle market will show you the wild variety in riders there are out there. There are some who will think 1,000 miles a year is a lot, or that taking the bike out only on Sundays is plenty, while there are others who take their machines on cross country trips and still keep them in perfect condition. If you see two identical bikes for sale except one has 30,000 more miles on it, then obviously the one with fewer miles is the better deal. However, if you want a bike that has more miles and you can find nothing that compares, and it looks like it was well cared for, then that bike will probably still be a great deal.

Did the owner love it?

A well cared for a motorcycle that has had its oil regularly changed has all the factory keys and has a gorgeous, waxy paint job, and new, matching tires is probably a bike that was loved. What this means is that the owner probably cared for the bike overall and it’s in great condition. If you see signs of something that looks like it went unrepaired for a long time, know that this may be a sign of other elements of neglect lurking on the machine.