By Talya Adams
I don’t know if there’s anything that stresses me out more than money, maybe my mom, but that’s all. So, whenever I have to get work done on my bike, I get very tense and focused on getting the best bang for my buck. My upcoming bike work has been in my sights for months now. I need a full-service tune up.
Now, my first bike left a huge impression on me as it was always in the shop. I believe I spent more money repairing it in the first six months than I paid for it initially. If you add in how old the bike was and that it was a starter bike, you might understand why I get so nervous when I have to do any work on my current bike.
I just have this nagging feeling something else could go wrong. However, this feeling has made me watch my bike’s performance and maintenance much closer over the years. I’ve learned it’s less of a headache to prevent a problem than to fix one.
This upcoming work is a major job, and often calls for a good chunk of money. A full service will include fluids, a valve adjustment, and in my case a new front tire as well. As I’ve called around, I’ve received quotes of upwards of $1,000 for this type of service. I thought about breaking this service down into separate parts, but in the long run it will just cost me more to do the work outside of a service package.
As I’ve prepared for this service, I’ve set money aside periodically for a while leading up to this job. I’ve also called various shops to compare quotes and find out how long each shop would need to have my motorcycle as I’m a daily commuter. Most importantly, I read customer reviews. Yelp saves dollars, time, and bad experiences. Also, talk to other riders you know, first hand accounts of positive and negative encounters with shops are second to none.
Next, I attempted to negotiate rates. People are often afraid to talk money and to see if you can reach a discounted agreement with mechanics. I find even opening the door to a conversation about lower costs always produces something, even if it’s a discount on a different service at a later date. Needless to say, I talked my way down by a few hundred dollars.
I’m taking my bike in next Monday, and it’ll be there for a few days. Given how hot it is outside these days I’m sure I’ll hate every second of it. However, once the works done I’ll relax knowing my bike is in top shape and I’m safe. At the end of the day, those are really the best circumstances you can hope for as a rider.
Stay safe in these streets!