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Motorcycle Tire Basics
May 19, 2017

Safety Tips for Off-Road and Dual-Sport Motorcyclists

1. Air pressure: Always maintain the recommended tire pressure for the type of terrain on which the motorcycle is being ridden; check the owner’s manual. Underinflated tires may cause wheel damage when ridden on rocky, rough terrain and allow the motorcycle to squirm or wander on smooth, hard terrain. Overinflation may damage the tires and cause an unnecessarily harsh ride. To accurately measure tire pressure, use a standard tire-pressure gauge.

2. Condition: Check for cuts and gouges that may cause air leakage. Also, check the tires for missing knobs and excessive wear.

3. Wheels: To avoid loss of control or injury, make sure axle nuts are tight and secure. Grasp each tire at the front and rear and try to rock it on its axle to detect worn-out bearings or loose nuts. There should be no free play or slip as you rock the wheel. Inspect wheels for broken or loose spokes and for cracks on the hub or rim.