Oftentimes it's easy to let tires wear away to the point where they absolutely have to be replaced. However, the old saying is true – prevention is much better than cure. Many motorcycle enthusiasts are unsure of when exactly they should change their tires, so here are three common indicators that it's time to visit the garage:
Your Motorcycle Suffers a Tire Puncture
Motorcycle tires are typically extremely sturdy and are able to withstand most impacts. As there is only two of them on your vehicle, they are usually better reinforced than car tires in order to prevent any damage to the outer lining. With that said, tire punctures can happen if you are riding on extremely uneven terrain or happen to ride over a sharp object on the road.
Many motorcycle enthusiasts are beginning to carry spare tires with them on their journeys. Although this may seem cumbersome, there are specific pieces of equipment designed to help you carry tires when you ride. This will alleviate some of the headache caused if you do encounter a punctured tire, as you will be able to replace the tire and continue your journey.
With that said, it's important that you practise proper safety routines if your bike breaks down due to a puncture:
- Make sure you move your bike well away from the middle of the road. Thankfully, bikes are much easier to move than cars so you should have no problem moving yourself to safety.
- Ensure that the engine is switched off entirely.
- Switch on your lights to let other drivers know your bike has broken down.
- If you are carrying one, put on a high-visibility jacket so that other drivers can immediately see you when passing.
The Tires are Showing Signs of Wear and Tear
Tire wear is a difficult thing to predict. Ageing of tires usually can't be predicted from when the tire was made; rather, it depends entirely on the rider and the conditions the tires are exposed to.
The biggest influence on tire wear is your own riding tendencies. If you typically ride the bike at full throttle, with harsh acceleration and braking, your tires will wear quite quickly. If you are riding at a particularly high speed and have to brake suddenly, the friction between your tires and the road will cause some degree of skidding. This skidding wears away at the outer liner of the tire, reducing the tread depth and greatly affecting your tires' performance.
As such, it's important to check the condition of your tires at least once a week. This will give you the chance to spot signs of wear or damage before it becomes significant, allowing you to take preventive measures before you next hit the road.
The Tire Structure is Damaged
Any forceful collision has the potential to significantly damage your tire. This doesn't mean that you have to be involved in a car crash in order to damage your tire; rather, any kind of forceful impact can cause structural damage to the wheel.
Typically, this form of damage is caused by potholes or ditches in the road. These can often be hard to notice if you're driving at full speed on an open highway, but you will be able to notice the effect on your bike's tires.
Any time that your tire is forced under excessive pressure can cause damage to the lining or even the wheel. This can cause visible deformation that makes riding difficult and in many cases dangerous. If the wheel has become misaligned, riding the motorcycle can be highly dangerous and as such it's important that you take the bike to a motorcycle repair mechanic as soon as possible.