Winter storage condensation protection?

Anything to do with 2 wheels...

Moderator: Staff

User avatar
Jug_Inspector
Learner Driver
Posts: 478
Joined: Jan 12th, '17, 13:44
First Name: Richard

Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by Jug_Inspector » Sep 24th, '17, 17:44

My garage isn't heated, it has single skin walls, and is damp as hell in the winter... :(

It's just condensation that is the problem, the air warms up, the bikes don't, they just sit there and start to drip.. :((

What do you do about this?

Last year I took away the blanket covers as they were holding the damp and started to smell a bit mouldy.
I then coated the bikes in WD40, or 3in1 oil (from a spray) but it's a bit messy.

Has anyone bothered to try and heat the bike?
I've just found these whilst searching
http://www.cosy-bike.co.uk/

I'm not £160 (per bike) bothered about this problem however.. :mrgreen:

Then there is the vacuum bags..
£45 for the bag and £15 for 3 crystal packages to keep it dry in there...
I could maybe stretch to that...

I've also mused about putting a tube heater under each bike, and a light breathable dust sheet over it..
Breathable covers are about £20 each
1ft 40W tube heater £18 each
This would work I think as I just need to stop the bikes being the coldest things in the garage..

So, what do you think, or do about this please?

User avatar
MellowYellow
Learner Driver
Posts: 2871
Joined: Mar 15th, '14, 14:06
First Name: Larry
Location: Bristol

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by MellowYellow » Sep 24th, '17, 17:59

De-humidifier, get lots of free 'distilled water' as well.

Also will generate a tiny amount of heat. Must remember to empty it.
Have you noticed that anyone going slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster is a maniac ?

User avatar
Bullet
Learner Driver
Posts: 848
Joined: Jun 7th, '11, 20:54
First Name: NOSY!!!
Location: The centre of the ringo
Contact:

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by Bullet » Sep 24th, '17, 18:46

My bikes have a nice storage container to reside in so dont have those issues
dont always believe what you read
especially on forums

Live life to the full, ride a bike

User avatar
Jug_Inspector
Learner Driver
Posts: 478
Joined: Jan 12th, '17, 13:44
First Name: Richard

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by Jug_Inspector » Sep 24th, '17, 18:51

I'm not sure about using a dehumidifier as the garage has lots of vents. I think it would just be a 400 watt waste of electricity for me.

User avatar
badgerKDD
Site Moderator
Posts: 4935
Joined: Apr 21st, '08, 19:59
First Name: Badger
Location: Redruth, Cornwall

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by badgerKDD » Sep 24th, '17, 18:58

They, dehumidifiers, get bloody costly if you are running them constantly though. Consider hot blankets ( bed blanket thingy's) you can set them low and drape them over the bike. Put an old blanket over the whole bike then a bike cover over the lot. You could also put them on a plug in timer so they only come on for nighttime. Cheaper to buy and run than a dehumidifier.

Alternatively, look at insulating your garage. Will probably cost a couple of hundred quid in total, but it does mean the whole garage will be drier, so saving not only your bikes, but tools and any other stuff you choose to store. You'll need some batten, kingspan sheets and then plastic sheet or thin ply/ mdf to cover it all in. Should only take a weekend for an average sized garage.
Cut me in half and I'v got Suzuki written right through me!
Ride GSXR 750 WR ( 1994) and I'm your SWB Cornwall Area Rep.
Fibreglass and Carbon repairs done quick and at reasonable cost..Call me on 07706954386.

User avatar
Gimlet
SWB Subscriber
Posts: 456
Joined: May 25th, '15, 21:15
First Name: Jim
Location: Dorset

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by Gimlet » Sep 24th, '17, 19:05

Edit: Badger beat me to it.

Get the garage nice and warm with a heater on a dry day and with the bike clean and dry spray it all over with ACF50 and stick it in a vacuum bag. Won't matter how cold or damp the garage gets afterwards.

All very well if you don't want to ride the bike again till spring but a pain if you like the odd winter ride if the weather's fine.
Alternatively, insulate the garage. Assuming there are no actual leaks, the damp is condensation because the single skin walls never get above dew point. Just 25 mm of PIR (Cellotex) insulation foam on the walls and ceiling will transform the climate inside. As long as you don't introduce moisture into the interior, say by putting away a wet bike, the air will stay dry pretty much whatever the temperature. Batten the walls out with a strip of DCP behind the battens or they'll rot, and fix the insulation over the top.

If you stick a dehumidifier in it as it is you're fighting a losing battle. You'll use loads of electricity and produce buckets of water without making any progress. Dehumidifying now and again when the walls are insulated and it'll stay bone dry.
KTM 1290 SuperDuke
Ducati 1098 Streetfighter
KTM 1190 Adventure

Ruffian
Learner Driver
Posts: 1103
Joined: Jul 29th, '13, 18:06
First Name: ian

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by Ruffian » Sep 24th, '17, 20:54

Lots of kitty litter or bags of silica gel to absorb the most ure.
"Welding is like cheese on toast! It gets hot and sticks together"

User avatar
billinom8s
Site Admin
Posts: 14931
Joined: Sep 10th, '05, 22:31
First Name: simon
Location: When in doubt...............C4

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by billinom8s » Sep 24th, '17, 20:57

I blocked most of the gaps in my garage, underlay and carpet on the floor, bike up on stands, cotton sheet over the bikes and of course - go for a ride or at least run one of them up to temp every couple of weeks.
Also, open the door slightly when I'm working in there.
07977507395
Image
don't forget we are on twitter believe it or not !!!
southwestbikers@southwestbikers (original, I know.)
KTM 990 superduke R
Zx10r trackbike

User avatar
Jug_Inspector
Learner Driver
Posts: 478
Joined: Jan 12th, '17, 13:44
First Name: Richard

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by Jug_Inspector » Sep 25th, '17, 07:23

billinom8s wrote:and of course - go for a ride or at least run one of them up to temp every couple of weeks.
I'm the opposite school on this one. I put the bike away and don't start it until I intend to actually go for a ride, which as I don't ride over winter means the bikes stay off for 5 months or so. I think anything short of actually riding for 20 mins (or so) is just adding condensation and blow by gases into the crankcase. I think it takes a proper journey to adequately clear these.

User avatar
billinom8s
Site Admin
Posts: 14931
Joined: Sep 10th, '05, 22:31
First Name: simon
Location: When in doubt...............C4

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by billinom8s » Sep 25th, '17, 07:46

So you're happy to let parts of the engine sit there with no oil circulation or movement for 5 months?

Mine get moved around so as not to get flat spots on Tyres or bearings (common cause of head bearing MOT failures on bikes when they come future of hibernation).
Up to you though.
07977507395
Image
don't forget we are on twitter believe it or not !!!
southwestbikers@southwestbikers (original, I know.)
KTM 990 superduke R
Zx10r trackbike

User avatar
Jug_Inspector
Learner Driver
Posts: 478
Joined: Jan 12th, '17, 13:44
First Name: Richard

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by Jug_Inspector » Sep 26th, '17, 04:17

Yes. Years ago I use to feel the need to start my bike at least once a month but then I read some guides and thought about it a little and came to the following conclusions/assumptions....

Almost every guide you read online states to not keep running the engine unless storing for years, but even then it's debatable whether to do it or just use fogging oil in the bores (which I don't do), or literally fill the whole engine with cheap oil.

You mention the oil circulation, here's my take on it.
Most of the oil settles (drips down to the sump) within the first hour after shutdown. More will accumulate afterwards but I seriously doubt there'll be anymore drip down after 24 hours. You leave yours for 2 weeks.. what's the difference between 2 weeks and 5 months in terms of what's happened in the engine?
I've gone into an engine of mine after it has been stood for months and everything looked pretty coated in oil. Oil has a chemical attraction to metal, synthetic even more so. Castrol Magnatec's ability to stick to your engine was nothing special to Castrol, all engine oil does it. Oil also gets trapped in cavities, especially in and around bearings. So I just don't see any real difference between 2 weeks, 1 month or 5 months.

It's the cold starts that are the worst and most damaging to an engine. After 5 months your engine will have had to endure roughly 10 cold starts whereas mine will have only had 1.
Then there is the gas blowby and condensation issue, I don't think idling and blipping the throttle is enough to adequately clear the build up from running the engine, but that's just opinion.
Plug fouling - I'm not sure how much bike engines suffer from this but extended idling can foul plugs to the point they need replacing. I read TL1000's were suppose to be suffer from it.

Flat spots - I will slightly over inflate the tyres, just to help them stay in shape. I think it's not so much being stationary (whilst loaded) that could cause a flat spot, but allowing it to sit whilst under inflated. However I have no issue with lifting a bike off the ground to protect its tyres, and if mine had good tyres on I'd be tempted to do so.

Head bearings, only ever had one fail and that was on my DRZ. It was actually due to the grease getting waterlogged due to river crossings and jet washing. I now use waterproof grease and repack regularly. If the bearings have good grease coverage & healthy (dry) grease then no issues should arise from them simply resting in the same position for an extended time.

So that is my considered opinion on storage. Feel free to educate me if I'm doing it wrong. :)

User avatar
Gimlet
SWB Subscriber
Posts: 456
Joined: May 25th, '15, 21:15
First Name: Jim
Location: Dorset

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by Gimlet » Sep 26th, '17, 06:50

Ride it indoors. You can buy a rolling road dyno for £20,000. Stick a big screen in front of you and you can re-live last year's Go-Pro vids without leaving the house. Problem solved.
KTM 1290 SuperDuke
Ducati 1098 Streetfighter
KTM 1190 Adventure

User avatar
ptolemyx
SWB Subscriber
Posts: 549
Joined: Jun 14th, '15, 06:10
First Name: Brian
Location: Exmoor in deepest North Devon

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by ptolemyx » Sep 26th, '17, 09:46

Retire from work then you can ride when the weather suits you 8)
In the last 12 months I've done around 7000 miles on the bikes of which 2000 or so are winter rides. When the bikes are laid up for a few weeks they're in a warm workshop with a dehumidifier which costs peanuts to run. And, as an aside, I would never use an Optimate......

User avatar
Jug_Inspector
Learner Driver
Posts: 478
Joined: Jan 12th, '17, 13:44
First Name: Richard

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by Jug_Inspector » Sep 26th, '17, 12:56

ptolemyx wrote:Retire from work then you can ride when the weather suits you 8)
I have and I do. 8)

User avatar
Jug_Inspector
Learner Driver
Posts: 478
Joined: Jan 12th, '17, 13:44
First Name: Richard

Re: Winter storage condensation protection?

Post by Jug_Inspector » Dec 30th, '17, 11:43

1st real test today and so far so good. 8)

Went into the garage just now and sure enough there is condensation on my filing cabinets and my DRZ is almost dripping there is so much on it. This is to be expected when we suddenly move from a cold spell to a warm one, especially as it's rained so much recently, with more to come... :(

Checked the sensor on my bike tent and it's 90% humidity in there, stuck my head in for a visual and sure enough my two roadies are nice & dry. :D

Post Reply