Every good biker knows that, regardless of whether his bike or scooter is new or second-hand, more expensive or cheaper, more or less powerful, rigorous maintenance is essential.
Not only because the motorcycle will last longer, but also because we will reduce the possibility of suffering an accident, a fall or being thrown in the middle of nowhere.
One of the most important points of these continuous surveillance tasks is undoubtedly the tires.
It is striking that, being a very simple task, many motorcyclists overlook this point, all the more so if we bear in mind that it is the wheels that, so to speak, ‘tie’ us to the ground.
In that sense, to check the condition of the tires you don’t need to go to a specialized workshop.
At least not in principle.
You just need some minimal knowledge, your ability to observe and be consistent.
How To Know When To Replace Motorcycle Tires?
Duck and watch.
This is, in our opinion, the first key to keeping a tire in perfect condition. You should check both wheels visually periodically – professionals talk about at least once a month – to certify the level of wear they may have.
What If My Tire Is Old And Worn Out?
It will negatively influence its adherence to the asphalt, decrease the degree of traction and lengthen the meters needed to stop the bike when you have to brake.
If it is also winter or it is raining, these three parameters will be accentuated and the danger will increase even more.
How Do I Know If My Tires Are Worn Out?
To find out the wear rate of a tire you only have to look at the snitches or indicators that the different manufacturers include in the design.
If you look at the tread pattern, specifically inside the grooves (also called water evacuation grooves), you will see small rubber protrusions approximately 1 millimeter high.
When these marks are aligned with the tread or directly erased it means that, to a greater or lesser extent, they are rubbing against the asphalt, and therefore the tire’s service life is over.
If you keep using it, you will run a serious risk because it will give you problems with efficiency and safety.
Should I Replace Both Bike Tires At The Same Time?
Although it is advisable to change the front and rear wheels at the same time, technically it is not strictly necessary.
Depending on the model of motorcycle or scooter you have and, above all, the type of use you make of it, it is possible that you have more wear in the front than in the rear or vice versa.
In that sense, it is logical to be able to extend the useful life of the deck with less wear.
What is technically more than advisable is to always carry two tires – front and rear – of the same model or, at least, of the same brand.
Of course, the wheels should always be mounted under the supervision of a qualified professional.
If you’re not sure they’ll be perfect, don’t risk doing it yourself.
How Often Should I Check My Motorcycle Tire Pressure?
Another very important aspect when it comes to tires is periodically checking the tire pressure.
It also depends on the intensity of use you make of your bike, but once a month and also a deeper check each time you undertake a long trip are a minimum recommended.
Ideally, this operation should be done in cold weather.
A simple calculation can be to reach the gas station, refuel, pay and go to the pressure machine.
About 10 minutes will have passed and the air inside the wheels will be at room temperature.
The right pressure is the one indicated by the manufacturer of each vehicle, although on the Internet you will find millions of articles on the supposed benefits of going with a little more or less pressure on the wheels.
If you choose to ride with the pressure below or above what it touches, you have all the ballots for the bike to flank, bounce or even be difficult to control.
On the other hand, think that, in the case of a scooter, it is the rear part that bears all the weight of the engine, the rider, and the passenger.
For this reason, in this type of motorcycles – and especially in maxiscooters, with a wheel of relatively small diameter but which bears a lot of weight – it is vital to make sure that the pressure of the rear wheel is optimal.
We know it can be uncomfortable and dirty, but it’s safe for you, so let’s get to work and don’t be afraid to get a little stained.
Is Putting Nitrogen In Tires Worth It?
Finally, our opinion about inflating tires with nitrogen, rather than with normal air, is that the differential we can obtain is practically invaluable.
In theory, nitrogen is a somewhat more stable gas than air and can contribute to the pressures being kept at the desired optimum level in both cold and hot weather.
In practice, however, the air we breathe is 78% nitrogen. To give you an idea, even Moto GP teams use normal air.
Speaking of races and circuits, it is worth mentioning that, due to performance, demands and situations of continuous high speed, this type of racing motorbike is governed by pressure parameters completely different from those of the street.
These instructions, so to speak, are only applicable on the track and should never be imitated on the road. Even if we are experts and fast riders, it is most likely that we will end up endangering our own safety, that of our motorbike and that of other road users.
What Happens If You Drive With Low Tire Pressure?
Riding with inadequate pressure can cause irregular wear, overheating of the internal casing and a greater risk of puncture or premature degradation of the tire.
In cases of total neglect and zero maintenance, it can even lead to the destruction of the tread in full motion.
There is no need to add much more about the consequences if this happens.
Also, read our article on when to replace a motorcycle helmet
Failed Assembly And Maintenance Of Your Tires That Can Get You In Trouble During Vehicle Inspection:
- Fitting of tires of the wrong size, overloading, missing or inadequate type-approval mark, use of a category which does not comply with the requirements and which affects road safety.
- Use of tires with a lower load code or speed index.
- Different tire sizes on the same axle or on twin wheels.
- Tires of different construction (radial / diagonal) on the same axle.
- Any serious damage or cut in a tire.
- Visible or damaged cables.
- Exposed tire wear indicator.
- Non-compliant tire tread depth.
- Contact the tire with other fixed parts of the vehicle preventing safe driving.
- Rubbing of the tires against other components (flexible devices).
- Contact of the tire against other components (does not affect safe driving).
- Re-sculpting of non-compliant tires.
- A protective layer of the cables affected.
- Malfunction of the tire pressure control system, or insufficiently inflated tires.
- Tyre pressure monitoring system not operational.