By now you must have read it and probably heard it from a senior rider saying that tyres are arguably one of the most important parts of your motorcycle. And why not, as one of the tyres companies proudly markets itself like this ‘Power is nothing without grip’, and that is in fact very true. Even the world’s most powerful motorcycle cannot perform without proper tyres no matter how brutal its engine is, it just won’t be able to deliver all that performance without the proper grip on the road.
Different motorcycles and different setups require different tyres. And how a tyre behaves totally depends upon the material which goes inside making it. For example, a tyre can be made up of soft compound or a medium compound or a hard compound depending upon the purpose it is built for. A sports bike normally comes with soft or medium compound tyres to provide the best grip on the tarmac. But more grip usually results in less tyre life. Therefore sports tyres are needed to be replaced every 6,000 to 8,000kms which is their usual life span.
Make sure you go through each and every point in detail in case you are thinking about getting your motorcycle tyre replaced soon –
Penny gauge method
If you have ridden your motorcycle for over 5,000kms now it is the time that you finally use the penny that’s hidden in your wallet for a long time now. Put the penny inside one of the tread lines of the tyre, it helps you judge the depth of the tread lines. The deeper the penny is, the more grip or tyre life you are left with.
Look for wobble
The easiest way to find out if your tyres need replacement is to look for the riding quality they are providing lately. Make sure you keep the pace slow and ride under 20kmph to make out if the bike is shaking or wobbling because of the tyres or not. If so, also check out if there is a bend in suspension rod, alloy wheels, or any other part. If not, the probability is that your tyres which need to be replaced soon.
Too many punctures
Flat tyres and punctures are nothing big deal to worry about, but not if they happen very often. If your tyres develop more than a couple of punctures then the structural integrity of the tyre is compromised especially under higher speed which is a safety concern, especially on high-performance bikes. If your tyre is aging and has developed too many punctures, it is time to replace it.
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Uneven patches or cracks
This is developed when your riding style is very harsh and you love to slip and slide through every corner on the road. It happens when you slam the brake pedal hard on a dirt filled surface and the rear tyre locks (in absence of ABS) and that specific tyre patch skids on the hard surface until the bike stops. This creates uneven patches on the tyre, compromising the overall tyre life. On the other hand, cracks might develop on the tyres when you ride on low tyre pressure on a regular basis. This creates force on the side walls of the tyres which as a result cracks in a longer term.
So on the flip side, you are not experiencing any of the things above, and have enough grip left on your tyre, make sure you wait for a couple of months more before replacing it.
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