The life span of your beloved vehicle depends on how well you maintain it, but what about the tires? The importance of tires is equal to that of the engine of the motorcycle, but why? Both the engine and the tires of the motorcycle affect the performance and are accountable for a good bike ride.
Motorcycle tires are manufactured from soft rubber, unlike hard rubber which is suitable for manufacturing car tires. Soft rubber allows the motorcycle tires to have a better grip on the road due to its flexibility which can’t be possible with hard rubber. Hard rubber can slip and slide the bike off the road. It is wise to choose the best motorcycle tires to ensure your safety.
Apart from boosting the performance and motorcycle’s grip on the road, tires play a dominating role in ensuring the safety of the rider. The majority of the motorcycle owners often think “when to change motorcycle tires” so that they are never stuck anywhere due to tire mismanagement and wrongly interpreting the factors that depict damages.
Here’s a complete guide on when to change motorcycle tires along with all factors that might help you to determine tire age and durability.
What is the Age of Motorcycle Tires?
Determining the age of the motorcycle tire is very easy when you know what factors to look for. The lifespan of the tires greatly depends on a variety of factors, such as weather, age, and build-quality.
Let’s have a little introduction to a few factors that help to determine the age of the motorcycle tires.
The durability of the motorcycle tires depends greatly on maintenance. The estimated and recommended span of usage for tires is up to 5 years. Since motorcycle tires are made of soft rubber, over some time the oil which keeps the rubber soft evaporates that causes the tires to harden.
Age contributes immensely to the factor that depicts when to change or replace the motorcycle tires. The manufacturing date of the tires can be found on the tires itself. Look for four-digit numerals on the tire, where the first two digits show the manufacturing month while the last two reveal the manufacturing year.
The life of your motorcycle tire also depends on its maintenance and your braking habits. Maintain the recommended tire pressure with regular checks, and do not overuse brakes. This not only ensures your safety but also increases the tire’s life.
You must always check the motorcycle tires for any defects. Even if the tread of tires is intact the sidewalls might have cracked, this cracking is known as dry rot which is a great sign to replace a tire.
With time the tires might incur undetected wears. While making a turn if a tire feels shaky or wobbly, it indicates uneven wear and the tire seeks a replacement.
Tread on the tires are not part of the design, rather they are the most important factor in terms of tire grip and stability. If the depth of tire tread is between 1/32 and 2/32, the tires are usable. The tread of tires wears majorly in the middle as it experiences the most surface contact.
Always ensure to maintain the recommended tire tread depth to avoid any accidental motorcycle slipping or tire bursts.
Motorcycle tires are made from soft rubber to increase grip and contact with the road. As tire ages its flexibility or to say the softness of rubber fades. The oil used to soften the rubber evaporated with time, leading the tire to harden, which is not a good sign for the safety of the rider.
If your motorcycle tire feels hard than it was before, it might be the time to change it.
When to Change or Replace Motorcycle Tires
Rider’s speed, suspension setup, tire pressure, braking habits, and tire maintenance all affect the life span of tires. Tire changing also includes wearing patterns based on tire tread. But do not judge your motorcycle tires on the tread, many other considerations recommended by the experts, mechanics, and manufacturers.
Now you know the factors to distinguish usable tires, the only question unanswered is “When?”. Here are 5 signs to tell if a tire needs to be changed or replaced.
1. Tread Depth
Tire manufacturers add a wear bar or Tire Wear Indicator (TWI) on the sidewalls of tires to help the users identify their expected life span. When the tread replaces the wear bar, it is time to change the motorcycle tire.
Maintaining the recommended tire pressure along with proper braking habits help a lot in increasing the life span of your motorcycle tires.
The tires of the motorcycle are not immune to the harmful aspects of sunlight. Constant exposure to sunlight and heat results in cracks on the tire sidewalls.
3. Pressure Loss
If you check the tire pressure regularly, you might notice any sudden pressure loss. If the tires are losing pressure faster than usual, it indicates that the tire bead is worn out and the tire needs replacing.
4. Too Many Puncture or Cuts
Too many punctures and cuts are an indication to change the tires, as you can go on forever mending and using the same one. Punctures and cuts affect the build of tires and can lead to unwelcome accidents.
5. Cupping or Scalping
One of the common wear of the front tire is cupping or scalping. Scalping from the sides is a result of the poor suspension. If your tire shows the sign odd uneven scalping, it is time for suspension servicing and maintenance.
Types of Tires
The automobile industry is a vast sea full of variety and options for the riders and drivers. The tires of motorcycles help a lot in persistence of the grip and stability. A question pops up in your as well as my mind, “Why are tires distinguished in several types?” The usage terrain of the motorcycle answers this question, be it a rainy region or the land of snow bikes can cruise on all these terrains.
The key to adaptability in all the terrains is based on the tires. There are several kinds of tires such as winter tires for snowy terrains, summer tires for hot regions, extra grip tires for rainy areas, and even high-performance cruiser bike tires which are best for traversing off-road.
The life of tire greatly depends on its type, say if you are using common tires in hot regions, the tire will not deliver high-performance and long life as it is not meant for that region. Always make sure that you use the tires that are best suitable for your motorcycle as well as the region.
The legs of your precious motorcycle that is the tires takes you to the places you want to be. We hope that this guide helps you acknowledge the contributing factors that depict when to change motorcycle tires.