Motorcycle tires: cold start warning!

20 Mar 2024 News & Campaigns

First “condition,” then let it rip

When riding a motorcycle, high lean angles and extreme forces generated during acceleration and braking are to be avoided at the cold start phase. The rubber mixes used these days for tires develop their best adherence properties only at temperatures of around 60° C and over. During normal cycling these temperatuers are generally achieved after a few minutes.
Also, after fitting new tires, bikers should be careful during the first 150 kilometers.“
Also, after fitting new tires, bikers should be careful during the first 150 kilometers. “The tread of brandnew tires could still be covered in release agent from the production process and this reduces grip on the road,” explains DEKRA tire expert Christian Koch. It is also important before setting off on new tires that manufacturer stickers and any adhesive residue have been completely removed from the tread.
Tires continually suffer damage because they are subject to high acceleration and braking forces immediately after fitting; for example, when bikers want to let it rip from the off as soon as they leave the garage. Testing has shown that the fitting paste used when mounting the tires can sometimes take several hours to dry properly. If this is not taken into account, the rear tire might spin on the rim at high toque. This can impair driving stability and rip off the valve or induce slow air loss on tires fitted with tubes.

New tires should therefore also be driven in carefully because modern motorcycle tires, in contrast to car tires, need to be ‘conditioned’ to achieve their optimum performance.

Christian Koch
Driving-in will release volatile components of the mix, which achieves an optimum networking of the polymers in the tire. The failure to do this may destroy the tread in certain cases. In order to avoid the all too frequent accidents caused by low air pressure, the tire expert recommends checking and adjusting the pressure as necessary at least twice a week and before setting off on any lengthy journey on cold tires.