It can be a lot of fun to spend an entire afternoon riding around on your motorcycle and getting lost. One of the best parts about owning a motorcycle is that it gives you an opportunity to explore areas you wouldn’t necessarily explore otherwise in a car, truck, or SUV.
But if you’re one of the roughly 8 million motorcycle owners in America, there are also going to be times when you need to get your motorcycle from point A to point B as quickly as possible. And in those instances, you’ll want to have access to a motorcycle GPS to keep you on track.
Would you like to add a GPS unit to your motorcycle today? Before you do, you should learn how to choose the right one.
Here are 10 tips that’ll make it easier than ever to pick out the best motorcycle GPS.
Ask Your Fellow Motorcycle Owners What They Use
The easiest way to find a great GPS system for your motorcycle is by checking with your fellow motorcycle owners to see what they use when they’re out on the road.
Ask around and see if you can get some kind of consensus on which motorcycle GPS system your fellow riders think is best. This is an especially effective approach for those motorcycle owners who don’t have the slightest clue as to which system might be right for them.
By talking to different motorcycle owners, you can see which systems they trust the most. You can also ask specific questions about individual systems to give yourself a good overview of each one.
Learn About the Different GPS Brands
While you’re speaking with your fellow motorcycle owners about the GPS systems they like best, you’ll start to hear some brand names come up over and over again. When you do, you should write them down and make an effort to do your homework on the brands that specialize in building motorcycle GPS units.
Some of these brands include:
- Trail Tech
- And more
When buying a GPS for a motorcycle, it’s typically best to stick with a brand you know you can trust. Big brands will often offer the best GPS coverage and updates that will make your GPS more useful to you down the line.
Read Reviews for a Bunch of Different GPS Systems
One of the other great ways to learn about the different motorcycle GPS systems on the market today is by using the internet to your advantage.
Search “motorcycle GPS systems,” and with just seconds, you’ll find long lists of the “best” GPS systems in the business.
You should be cautious about relying on just one list to tell you which GPS systems are worth considering. But as you sift through different lists, you’ll likely see two or three GPS systems showing up on multiple lists.
Those are the GPS systems you’ll want to seriously consider. Just make sure you scroll through some reviews for them first. You can learn almost everything you need to know about GPS systems by analyzing the various reviews that are available for them.
Keep the Durability of GPS Systems in Mind at All Times
At this point, you should have a few motorcycle GPS systems that you’re considering for your bike in mind. Whether you’ve learned about them from other motorcycle owners or on the internet, you like what they have to offer.
Now, it’ll be time to take a look at some specific features that are important when trying to choose the right motorcycle GPS system.
One of the first features you’ll want to consider is durability. A GPS for a motorcycle has to be extremely durable.
Your GPS is going to be exposed to everything from the vibrations of your bike to the debris that you encounter when you’re out on the road. It should be designed to stand up to whatever might get in its way while you’re riding your motorcycle.
Find GPS Systems With Large Enough Screens
Screen size is another important feature when it comes to your motorcycle GPS. What good is your GPS going to be if you can’t actually see the screen while you’re riding?
Motorcycle GPS systems come in a wide range of sizes. Some of them have screens that are only 3 or 4 inches, while others have screens that are upwards of 7 or 8 inches.
Your screen should be large enough for you to see based on your individual eyesight. You don’t need to splurge on a super large GPS system if you have excellent vision, but you also don’t want to select a small GPS system to save money and end up regretting it later when you can’t see it.
Make Sure GPS Systems Are Easy to Mount
Are you planning on taking your GPS system on and off your motorcycle on a regular basis? There are some motorcycle owners who will buy one GPS system for multiple bikes and move it around.
If you’re going to do this, you want something that will be simple to mount whenever you want to use it. Different GPS systems rely on different mounting systems to keep them in place.
You should choose a GPS system that’s going to go on and off your bike without a problem. Even if you’re not going to move it around much, it’s still important for your GPS to be as easy to mount as possible.
Try to Find GPS Systems That Are Waterproof
At some point, you’re unfortunately going to get caught out in the rain while you’re on your motorcycle. You need to be very careful when riding in the rain.
You should aim to:
- Use your brakes and your throttle sparingly
- Finish up all your turns before you begin accelerating
- Steer clear of putting yourself in positions where you’ll have to make last-second movements
You should also make sure your motorcycle GPS is up for the challenge of riding in the rain. The last thing you want to do is be fiddling around with your GPS and trying to put it away when it’s pouring out.
Search for a GPS system for your motorcycle that is completely waterproof. It’ll give you one less thing to worry about when it starts raining while you’re on your bike.
Test Out Different GPS Systems With Your Motorcycle Gloves On
Just about all GPS manufacturers claim that their motorcycle GPS systems will work great for those wearing motorcycle gloves. But that’s not always the case.
If possible, you should test out different GPS systems while wearing the motorcycle gloves that you wear when you’re on your bike. See if systems are as responsive as companies say they are while you have your gloves on.
Check the Battery Life of GPS Systems
Your motorcycle GPS system isn’t going to do you a whole lot of good if the battery inside of it is dead. Therefore, you need to find a GPS system that offers you excellent battery life.
There are some GPS systems that will only provide motorcycle riders with about an hour of life. That’s not going to be nearly enough for those riders who enjoy spending long afternoons getting lost out in the world.
Check for a GPS system that will set you up with at least a few hours of battery life, if not more.
See If GPS Systems Offer Any Special Features
A great motorcycle GPS system should do more than just point you in the right direction when you turn it on. It should also be able to provide you with a bunch of other features that will help you navigate when you’re out on the road.
There are some GPS systems for motorcycles that can give you updates on the weather and help you find shelter before you find yourself riding in the rain. There are some other GPS systems that can give you traffic reports and help you avoid traffic jams that might be up ahead.
There are even some motorcycle GPS systems today that come with satellite radio included in them. You can keep yourself entertained when you’re riding through a particularly boring stretch of land on your motorcycle.
Many of these extra features aren’t necessary for all motorcycle owners. But you might find that they come in handy once you start using your GPS system every time you ride your motorcycle.
Purchase the Right Motorcycle GPS Today
In addition to considering everything else that’s been mentioned here while choosing a motorcycle GPS, you should also keep the cost of GPS systems in mind.
A motorcycle GPS system could cost you anywhere from $100 to as much as $1,000 in some instances. It’s why it’s best for those searching for GPS systems for their motorcycles to create a budget before they do it. It’ll prevent you from spending too much on a GPS system for your motorcycle.
Would you like to put your new GPS system to the test as soon as you get it? Read our blog to learn about some of the incredible cross-country motorcycle trips you can take.