As such, this guide has been put together starting with the moment you take your machine out of storage. It will give go kart owners an idea not just of the type of maintenance that must be done on the karts, but how important it is to follow each step. We have put together a brief collection of maintenance steps that are absolutely necessary for keeping your go kart in good shape.
10. Bringing the Kart Out of Storage
It’s important to remember that all good go kart maintenance starts with the moment you take the kart out of storage. Your kart should absolutely not be immediately driven, even if you feel like you followed the proper storage techniques at the end of last season.
It’s important that you give the entire kart a solid once-over, looking at every moving part. When you bring the kart out of storage, you must make sure to use fresh gas. Avoid putting your hopes in the old fuel that might still be in the tank. Don’t take anything for granted at this point – you don’t know what’s changed over the course of a few months!
9. Changing the Filter
Much like a car’s air filter, a go kart air filter allows the engine to “breathe.” It’s what helps to make sure that air and not particulate matter flows through the engine. This allows it to function efficiently and ultimately to add more horsepower to the unit.
Therefore, an important guideline of go kart maintenance is checking out your air filter before turning on the engine. Your filter will clog much more often than a car’s filter. Therefore, make sure to clean it out and replace it whenever necessary.
8. Oiling Parts
Lubrication is another major issue for go karts. Again, this is a piece of go kart lubrication that probably needs to be done a bit more often than you might think. The rule of thumb here is that you’ll need to oil the following parts once for every three hours of use:
- Tie rod pivot points.
- Pedal pivot points.
- Steering pivot points.
- Steering spindles.
A few drops will usually be all you need to keep these pivot points moving smoothly. Therefore, don’t go overboard with the lubrication process. As a rule, though, it’s still better to have a free hand with lubrication than to ignore the process altogether.
7. Checking the Chain
Your drive chain is one of the most important parts of your go kart, so a bit of good go kart maintenance will revolve around the chain. You should check the drive chain regularly to make sure that it’s not too loose.
Just push down on the chain and measure the slack. If it’s more than half an inch, you’ll need to tighten the chain.
However, tightening the chain isn’t enough. It will also need to be lubricated each time you take the kart out. A good graphite spray is the key to a long chain life. By comparison, using oil-based sprays will attract dirty and shorten the overall life of your engine.
6. Inspecting Tires
As you might expect, your tires are an important part of the overall go kart maintenance process. While you don’t necessarily have to do much with your tires all that often, it’s important that you physically inspect them before you hit the track.
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5. Spark Plugs
You will need to add checking your spark plugs to your go kart maintenance list, as well. While this doesn’t need to be done every time you take the kart out, it should be done on a regular basis.
Taking out the plug is easy. Usually, you can find it at the top of the engine and can be removed with a spark plug wrench. Always clean out the area around the plug. However, be prepared to replace it only if it is pitted, brown, or cracked.
4. Cleaning the Kart
Cleaning your kart is perhaps the easiest bit of go kart maintenance you’ll do. As a rule, you need to check your kart for debris both before and after you take it out for a drive.
Pay special attention to anything that gets near the engine compartment or near the chain. This way, yo make sure you don’t run into any major issues. Beyond that, you should hand-clean your kart to get rid of any particulate matter that manages to hang on to the kart.
3. Spot Checks
Your eyes are the most important maintenance tool you have. Before you take your kart out for a ride, do a few minutes to spot check every moving part.
While all the maintenance recommended here should keep your kart in a safe state, you never know when something unexpected might happen. If something looks unusual, avoid driving the kart until you can identify the problem.
2. Brake Check
Working on your brakes is a two-step process. The first is visually inspecting the brake cables for kinks or breakage. This is a short task that should be done before and after every ride, but it can save your life.
The other step is lubrication. It’s also a short process, but this bit of go kart maintenance will extend the life of your brake cables.
1. Proper Storage
Your final bit of go kart maintenance is simple. Always make sure to store your kart out of the elements! When you’re in the off-season, you have to store your machine in a safe place.
First of all, drain out any drop of fuel that remained in the tank. Afterward, add a bit of oil to the cylinder and lubricate all of your cables. This should make it much easier to bring the kart out of storage and prevent rusting or other major issues while the kart is idle.
There’s not a single step of go kart maintenance that’s possible to skip. Anything you overlook will ultimately make your kart less functional and cause it to develop problems.