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What would you do if your motorcycle tipped over the hill due to a poor parking job? Of course, having your bike fall over downhill because of improper parking is quite an embarrassment.
Nevertheless, for inexperienced riders, parking on a hill briefly can be intimidating. Not to forget the aftermath of the fall; the bike damage could be extensive or even injure someone.
While the risk always exists, a rider can learn how to park correctly on a hill. Otherwise, the motorcycle will tip over downhill. In addition, the bike can easily throw you off balance; worse, stall, and you drop it when you try to get it running again.
How to Park a Motorcycle on a Hill
How do you park a motorcycle on a hill? When you park on a hill, the rider should never be random about the parking position. Only park at a hill as the last resort.
For starters, always park at an angle from the curb. Also, park with the back of the front tire touching the curb while angling towards the street. Hence, you can easily ride back into the traffic when you get back on. Nevertheless, place the front tire adjacent to and touching the curb. Importantly, park the bike in gear.
You must do everything right. Otherwise, you'll come back to a fallen-over motorcycle which is quite devastating. Moreover, a fall will cause hundreds of dollars in damage.
Even so, it's safer to park the bike facing uphill than downhill. Hence, try uphill parking first by turning the bike.
Steps for Safe Hill Parking
Here is your step-by-step guide to parking on a hill:
Perfect Parking Spot
Choose the most suitable parking spot and pull forward. Here, the riders' control actions are put to the test. Cover the brakes, smoothly disengage the clutch, and apply a little throttle.
Park Uphill with a Curb
It's vital to turn the bike wheel to an angle. Thus, back the front wheel up to touch the rest against the curb. Avoiding a parallel park uphill places the bike in an unstable position.
Nevertheless, having it angled against the curb reduces tip-over risk by a large margin.
Determine the Exact Parking Angle
You can determine the perfect parking angle on a case-by-case basis. It depends on how steep the hill is, what the curb is like near you, and the bike's weight. As a result, adjust the angle to about 35-50 degrees to boost the bike stability.
Side Stand Position
The placement of the bike's side stands is quite essential. Do not leave the step stand leaning uphill. Leaning downhill can also prove to be disastrous as the bike can tip over easily.
Moreover, be cautious and constantly analyze the parking situation. The best practice is to leave the bike side stand at an angle.
Snugly Press the Front Tire
The secret to parking on a hill is to find as much stability as possible. A little pressure against the front wheel works superbly. Hence, snugly press the front tire against the curb.
The position makes the bike stable after packing to prevent tip-over mishaps.
Turn the Handlebars
The handlebars should face the same side as the side stands. This gives the bike more stability.
For example, if you turn the handlebars to the left as the side stands. Then try to push from the back, the bike won't move, and the side stand remains down.
First Gear Parking
When parking on a hill, you must leave the bike in gear. It offers additional safety by providing much-needed stability. Thus, first gear parking stabilizes the bike through the transmission.
The transmission does not allow the bike to move at all.
As motorcycles lack parking brakes, gearing in the transmission holds the bike in place. Moreover, it will take off a massive amount of force to get the wheels to turn at all.
Steps to Park Downhill
Here are some tricks to parking downhill as well.
Downhill Bike Park
First, think of how you will get out of the parking spot before even starting parking. The whole downhill parking process is arduous and scary for an inexperienced rider. A downhill parking spot may be perfect, but it turns out hard to get out, especially if you have to back up the motorcycle.
Hence, the perfect downhill parking spot should be easy to get out of.
Flip Around and Park Uphill
On average, a motorcycle weighs 800 lb. Now try to back it up a hill from the parking spot. An impossible task! Right? As a result, you may have to ask people to help push so you can get out.
However, if you flip the bike around and park pointed uphill, it will be easy. The position makes it much easier to get out. Moreover, increase the stability of the bile while parked.
However, if you must park downhill, follow these guidelines:
Park the bike diagonally. Use the bike side stand for additional support. The stand boosts bike stability in the downhill parking position.
Tricks For Keeping Your Motorcycle Safe While Parked on a Hill
What other things can you do to make motorcycle parking on a hill a better experience?
Use the Wheel Chock
If your bike has a bag or storage space, bring the wheel chock along with you. Whenever you park on a hill, place the chock under the wheels to secure the bike.
Balance the Bike
It would be best if you balanced out the weight of the bike. In case one side of the bike is far heavier, the bike might tip over the hill.
Try to even out the weight by removing things off the bike, such as a bag.
Park Away From People
Do not park nearby things that people might want to get to? A slight bump will most likely tip off the bike over. Think of your surroundings to make sure no other influence can cause a fall to your bike.
No Neutral Parking
Never leave the bike in neutral gear while parking on the hill. Park on gear, even on flat ground. A neutral gear makes the bike susceptible to movement.
Is it Easy to Get Out of the Parking Spot?
Before you consider a specific parking spot on a hill, analyze how you will get out of it. Hence, make sure it's easier to get out before parking.
Nevertheless, check how stable the bike is before you walk away. Always take that extra second to review the parking job, as it's always worth it.
Also, never park a bike parallel uphill, as this is a precarious position.
Technically, how to park a motorcycle on a hill briefly depends on the hill itself. Unfortunately, no hill is like the other. Hence different inclines may call for different parking approaches. As a result, it may force you to try multiple positions to find the perfect one. The best park position is a front tire adjacent to and touching the curb and leaving the bike in gear.
Overall, make sure the motorcycle is in a stable parking position before you leave it.
People Also Ask
Before we wrap up, let’s check out a few of the most frequently asked questions about motorcycle parking on a hill.
Should You Keep Your Motorcycle in Gear When Parked on a Hill?
Yes. Motorcycles lack parking brakes, hence the use of gears to park. In addition, the first gear stops the bike from rolling back. It adds much-needed stability; however, it's difficult for the bike to move while it's in gear.
Is It Okay to Park a Motorcycle on a Hill?
Parking a motorcycle on a hill is quite a hassle. You should avoid the experience. Look for the flattest spot park. In case there is no flat spot to park, park the bike in a diagonal position.
Otherwise, park with the front wheel to the curb. The essence of parking on a hill is to ensure the bike is stable enough to stand on its own.
Which Way to Turn Handlebars When Parking a Motorcycle on a Hill?
The side you turn on the handlebars depends on the side stand. Turn the bars to the left while the sides and incline on the left side. This setup gives the bike more stability on a hill by further weighting the side stand.