How Long do Motorcycle Tires Last? Estimated 5 years

black and red motorcycle on road

You take great pride in your bike. You work on maintaining its performance year-round and make sure it’s ready for any challenge on the road. So you take the time to invest in high-quality motorcycle tires, which don’t come cheap. But you know it’s worth it.

Yes, maintaining your rides can be costly. The consequences of riding on worn-out tires are even more dangerous, but that’s not the only thing. So, how long do motorcycle tires last? And even more importantly, how can you help them last longer?

First, let’s answer the question:

Depending on several factors, tires will last roughly 5 years. Tires will show signs of aging even if you don’t use them. So if you store a tire for an extended period, the rubber will become brittle, and the tire will eventually become unusable. 

What affects the lifespan of a motorcycle tire?

The lifespan of a motorcycle tire is affected by a few factors. 

  • Mileage – the more miles you ride, the faster the tire wears out.
  • Speed – the faster you ride, the faster the tire wears out.
  • Maintenance – the better you maintain your tires, the longer they last.
  • Type of Motorcycle – Tires are made for different kinds of motorcycles. The more horsepower your bike has, the faster it will wear out a tire.
  • Riding Style – When you ride your motorcycle, the way you do it will affect the life of the tires on it.
  • Road Hazards – If you ride on rough surfaces, you will see more wear.
  • Weight – The heavier your motorcycle is, the more it will wear out your tires.
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Checking the tire’s age

Checking the tire’s age also means finding out when the tire was manufactured. Getting this information will determine how close your tire is to the recommended 5-year life span.

Inspect the sidewall of your tire and find the acronym “DOT.” Beside it, you will find a series of numbers. 

Check the LAST FOUR DIGITS. The first two will tell you the week it was manufactured, and the last two represent the year. 

For example:

If you see 3618, this means the tire was manufactured on the 36th week of 2018. 

Now, get a calculator and divide the number of weeks by 4.3 to arrive at the month of manufacture. 

36/4.3=8.3720

The tire was made in August 2018.

To get the tire age, subtract the current date from the above info. 

Tire Tread

Rain sipes in motorcycle tires act like small teeth on the tire’s surface, which helps spread water and improve traction.

If the raised bar across the sipes is covered by the tread, your tires are in good shape. If not, you should replace your tires before they wear out.

Checking for Tire Defects

Make checking your bike’s tires a part of your pre-ride check. Tires are vulnerable to damage from the road surface. They should be checked before every ride. If they look bad, pull over and inspect them.

You should look for these things.

Cracks, fractures, and cuts:

  • When a tire is old, cracks appear on the sidewalls or in the rain sipes or tread.
  • Fractures could be a sign that the tire is about to fail.
  • Cuts are caused by things that happen on the road.
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If you see any of these, replace that tire!

Punctures:

When you run over a nail or something else that is sharp, it can cut the tire. This can cause a thin but deep puncture in the tread. Replace it immediately if you can; otherwise, you’ll risk a blowout.

Inflation and pressure:

It’s essential to ensure that the tires on your motorcycle are adequately inflated when it’s cold.

When you’re dealing with something that’s filled with a lot of air, you want to make sure that the proper air pressure is present in there to keep the tire from deflating. You should only put as much air as it takes to properly pressurize the tube and tire. If the tire loses pressure, check it for possible signs of damage immediately. 

Motorcycle storage affects tire aging

How you choose to store your motorcycle can have a significant impact on the life of your tires. While a bit of care can be taken with a garage at home, storage on a dirt road can quickly lead to a worn-out tire if you don’t take the proper precautions.

Generally, your tires will last longer if you keep your bike in a garage. Check the age of your tires when you bring your motorcycle out of storage. Make sure there are no cracks or other damage.

Getting New Tires

You need to buy new tires when the tread nears the wear marks or looks like it’s worn unevenly or if your tires show signs of aging. Tires for motorcycles come in a lot of different sizes and styles.

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Mixing wheels for a particular motorcycle can make the bike less stable, and this is because each wheel affects the others. It’s best to buy all of your motorcycle’s tire sets from the same company at the same time.

A motorcycle’s tires are one of the first things that come to mind when thinking about maintenance. In fact, they are the second most common expense in motorcycle maintenance. They can indeed be expensive to replace, which is a significant expense if you’re not careful.

Conclusion

The most common reason for tire replacement is that tires are the weakest point of your bike. As you can tell from the lack of any rules for tire longevity, there is no exact method for calculating the life span of a tire. However, tire wear can be a good indicator of the condition of the whole.

If you feel like you have no idea whether or not you should change your tires, a mechanic will be able to answer these questions better than you will. 

Hopefully, this article has given you some insight into the life span of your motorcycle tires. Now, it’s time to find a tire shop in your area to help you with this process.

Thanks for reading and ride safe out there.