When should I change my motorcycle tyres?
Your safety comes first: Check your tyres
Tyres in poor condition can ruin your vehicle's performance and even endanger your safety or that of your loved ones. It is recommended that you do a weekly inspection to check:
the state of the tyres
- the depth of the treads
- any damage due to impacts or any sign of unusual wear and check your tyre pressure twice a month.
When in doubt, always ask for expert advice!
Six reasons to change your tyres
1. The tyre has a puncture
Tyres are durable and are designed to withstand a certain number of impacts, but they can sometimes get a puncture. In the event of a flat tyre, the tyre should be inspected by a professional mechanic. Only a professional will be able to confirm that the tyre's interior chamber hasn't suffered any irreparable damage.
2. The legal tread wear limit has been reached
A Michelin Man symbol on the upper side of your tyres means that they feature a tread wear indicator. Similar to little bumps, these can be found at the bottom of the main grooves.
Once the remaining rubber has worn down to this level, the tyre has reached its legal wear limit of 1 mm. Michelin strongly advises you to change your tyres before reaching this point. Past this point, your safety cannot be guaranteed, nor can grip or performance, particularly on wet surfaces.
3. Tyres show signs of ageing
It is difficult to predict a tyre's lifespan because it bears no relation to its manufacturing date. Tyres that have never been used, or have only been used infrequently, may still show signs of ageing. Many factors can affect their lifespan: weather conditions, storing and usage conditions, load, speed, tyre pressure, maintenance, riding style...
Michelin recommends that all riders regularly dedicate a few moments of their time to inspecting their tyres in order to pick up on any external signs of ageing or wear: deformations or cracks in the tread, on the shoulders or sides...
You should also have your tyres checked by a professional who can assess if they should be replaced or not.
The 5 year test… before it's too late!
After 5 years of use or more, tyres should be examined every year by a professional mechanic. If the tyres need to be changed, follow the manufacturer's recommendations with regard to replacing original components. As a precaution, all tyres that have not been replaced after ten years should be changed, even if they appear to be in a generally good condition and have not reached their tread wear limit.
4. The tyre is damaged
Pavements, holes or blunt objects can seriously damage tyres. All tears, cuts or deformations should be carefully examined by a professional mechanic. Only a professional can confirm whether the tyre can be repaired.
As a general rule, don't ride on damaged or flat tyres.
When is a tyre damaged beyond repair?
- Punctures to the sides of the tyre
- Deformed or visible beads
- The tread rubber becoming unstuck or deformed
- Wear leading to a visible breaker or carcass under the treads or on the side
- Damage due to oils or corrosive substances
- Marbling or scratches to the inside faces as a result of riding with insufficient tyre pressure.
5. The tyre shows an unusual pattern of wear
Unusual wear of the tyre treads - localised in certain places, in the centre or on the shoulders - is often a sign of a mechanical problem (worn shock absorbers, transmission, fixings…) or of a balance issue. It can also occur as a result of incorrect tyre pressure.
To prevent unusual wear, check your wheel balance every six months. This will allow you to prolong the life of your tyres and ride more comfortably. Aside from this, the wear on your tyres may seem excessive with regard to their mileage when compared with other motorcycles ridden in the exact same conditions.
If this happens, contact your specialist.
6. You have the wrong tyres for your vehicle
Choose your tyres in accordance with legal requirements and the kind of equipment recommended for your vehicle. For optimal performance, use tyres with the same tread pattern for the front and back. Tyres that have different designs, treads and wear patterns might affect the vehicle's balance and stability. Never fit a vehicle with one radial tyre and one non radial tyre unless specified by the manufacturer.
When the time comes to change your tyres, check out our tyre selector or consult one of our specialists to be sure you make the right choice.