What is high mileage for a Harley Davidson motorcycle? How many miles are too many miles for a used motorcycle? The classic American motorbike is every biker’s dream across the world. From Ghost Riders to Terminator 2: Judgement Day and several other Hollywood movies featured one superstar in them, a Harley Davidson motorcycle roaring on the screen.
It is every biker’s dream to have a Harley of their own, however, before buying a used or dealer certified Harley bike learn what is high mileage for a Harley Davidson and how you should take care of your vintage Harley bike.
Why it is Important to Know Mileage for a Harley Davidson Bike
When you decide to sell your Harley Davidson, or choose to buy a used motorcycle, it is necessary to understand how mileage can impact the performance and price of your bike. Besides, it is critical to know what counts as a high mileage for your bike. The mileage can vary based on how frequently the bike is ridden, however, motorcycles are typically ridden less often than cars, an average motorbike is around for about 3000 miles per year.
Mileage gives you a fundamental estimation of the engine’s condition, the wear and tear that other bike parts might have gone through, and more. Low mileage Harley Davidson will always cost more money than the one with higher miles. An average motorcycle use is between 2,000 and 3,000 miles a year, with mileage on touring bikes ranging between 5,000 to 6,000-mile range.
How Long Do Harley Davidson’s Bikes Last
What is high mileage for Harley-Davidson motorcycles? An average Harley Davidson can last for well over 75,000 miles if well-maintained and ridden responsibly. Based on an annual mileage of 4,000 miles, one can infer that a Harley Davidson can last for more than 25 years.
The Harley Davidson Sports bikes engines are designed to be revved across the plains at a high speed. Riders buy them for aggressive riding and sharp handling, your Harley Davidson sports bikes can have a mileage as high as 25,000 miles.
If a Harley Davidson bike has good maintenance records, no signs of damage and no oil leaks, even a bike with 40,000 to 50,000 miles can be expected to last a long time. Service records and the habits of the previous owner have much more to do with longevity than the number on the odometer. Other factors that will decide how long will your Harley Davidson chopper last include:
- How well the Harley’s maintained
- How conservatively or aggressively it was ridden.
- The climate of the place from where you bought your Harley.
- How often the bike sat idle.
- Whether or not the previous owner serviced the Harley according to the service intervals outlined in the owner’s manual.
- Whether the vehicle was stored outside or indoors, whether it was covered or exposed to the elements such as dust, smoke, moisture etc.
What is High Mileage for a Harley Davidson
On average, a Harley Davidson will be considered to have a high mileage if it is somewhere around 80,000 – 100,000 miles. Moreover, a bike with a mileage of around 50,000 miles on a HD isn’t uncommon. You may go for a bike with 50k miles (even above) on its odometer if the bike has been properly maintained. The service record of the bike and the previous owner’s riding habits along with the condition of tires, storage, service frequency etc. decide how well the bike has been kept.
Are Harley-Davidsons Expensive to Maintain?
Harley Davidson has a mainstream maintenance cost when compared to other brands. Harley recommends servicing their motorcycles every 5,000 miles, and the average cost of a service is $400, plus the price of tires, brake pads or any other part required. However, keep in mind that this cost is going to add up if you are riding more miles, such as an average rider who rides the bike for 10,000 miles a year will pay $800 yearly, similarly, if you are an avid biker riding for 20,000 miles a year, your annual cost is going to jump up to $1600.
Motorcycle services are always less expensive if you go to a small-time, independent mechanic shop, as compared to a dealership. When you are going to buy a used or certified Harley Davidson bike, we recommend you to inspect the following parts before making a purchase.
- Primary drive
- Gaskets, seals and fluids
- Parts that are subject to ongoing wear like brake pads, clutch plates and batteries
- Check if there are any outstanding recalls and ask the seller to perform the work if needed.
- And finally, perform a road test before making the final decision to buy your Harley bike.
At What Point Would Your Harley Davidson Bike Need Major Work Done
Most of the time the bike requires major work done only because the owner let the small things snowball into a bigger issue. There is no definitive answer as to when your Harley bike requires major work. However, if you take care of your bike, conduct regular maintenance you will surely add up a couple of quality years to its life. Some of the regular maintenance costs that you should keep in your mind include oil and filter change, brake pad or clutch change, tire replacement etc.
How to Take Care of Harley Davidson Motorcycle
What is high mileage for a Harley Davidson when the bike is a high-valued investment that is going to last from generation to generation. Harley might not be the cheapest bike around but it all pays off when you get to pass the bike down from generation to generation.
An important factor that contributes to the lifespan of your bike is how well maintained your bike is. A well-maintained motorcycle not only requires fewer (or no) major repairs, it also adds value to it in the long run.
Let us have a look at some basic tips that will help you take care of your Harley Davidson.
Check the Tires of Your Harley Davidson
Motorcycle tires represent a bike’s longevity, its speed and your safety. Whether you drive long distances or short ones, it is important that a pair of healthy tires safely take you to and from your destination. Apart from regular service inspection, inspect the air pressure of your tires regularly before going for a ride. In case of clear signs of wear and tear, huge cracks, or bent wheels, replace them at once. Some minor issues such as a tire puncture can be easily repaired, however, the tires must immediately be replaced if the puncture keeps happening frequently. It is recommended that you replace your Harley bike’s tires six years after the date of manufacture.
Do Regular Oil Changes
A lapse in regular oil change will sooner or later result in major engine problems and repair expenses. Therefore, for a long-lasting, top-performing engine it is necessary to frequently change oil and replace the oil filter of the bike.
Oil changing depends on a number of factors such as the model you own, your driving style, and how often your bike is used. For example, if you are a long-distance daily commuter, you’re expected to replace your motorcycle’s oil more frequently than a rider who only rides on the weekends.
Harley Davidson themselves recommend oil change of all of their bikes after 2,500 miles (assuming you have done the initial inspection of 1,000 miles). The bike can be run up to 5,000 to 6,000 miles using semi-synthetic oil. However, fully synthetic oil may be used for every 7,000 to 10,000 miles.
Clean or Replace Your Air Filters
Whether you are a daily commuting rider, or you love to rush your bike through rough terrains, servicing your Harley motorcycle includes cleaning or replacing your air filter frequently. A clogged air filter will more likely contribute to fuel inefficiency and decrease engine performance. A small investment in an air filter goes a long way, so make sure to clean or swap them for a new one whenever you service your motorcycle.