When it comes to motorcycles, the wheels involved require a little extra care than traditional car tyres. Keep reading to discover basic maintenance tips required for keeping your bike wheels high quality.

Not only will this support and improve your motorcycle tyres, it will also enable you to enhance your driving experience. You’ll find out all you need to know about wheel truing, regeneration and a few other areas of a motorcycle that are worth considering.

close-up of front motorbike wheel

Motorcycle rims

The rims on a motorbike are, naturally, very different from those on a car. As such, you need to be careful when buying the right rims. This is because there are two different types:

  • Rims used with tyres that have an inner tube.
  • Rims used with tubeless tyres

When buying a new rim for your bike, you should always ensure that the wheel rim in question is both designed for use with your existing bike, as well as your tyres. Of course, you can always get new tyres if your existing models aren't suitable for these rims, but that is an unnecessary expense many riders are happy to avoid.

Similarly, the rims must still comply with all active safety standards and be approved for sale and use in Ireland. 

What to remember when buying a new motorcycle rim

  • The wheel rim must be designed for use with your bike.
  • The rim must comply with all safety standards and be approved for sale and use in Ireland.

motorcycle taking turnWhen it comes to motorcycle tyres and rims, there are a lot of factors to consider.

Regenerating motorcycle wheels

Because motorbikes only have 2 wheels, rather than 4 found on other vehicles, it’s more important that these wheels are as straight as possible. In motorcycles, this is known as ‘true’. A true wheel is perfectly in line and has a perfect circumference. Otherwise, it would cause noticeable discomfort, wobbles and skewing while riding.

Here, we will answer some of the more common questions riders ask about regenerating and maintaining their motorcycle wheels.

Can I true my wheels at home?

Yes, you can! You will need a wrench for adjusting the tension of the spokes, which should be included in the toolset supplied with your new motorbike.

Are loose spokes a danger?

In short, yes. A loose spoke can cause the wheel to lean to one side. This will result in a decrease in riding comfort and driving safety.

Is it worth truing my wheels myself?

While you can true your wheels yourself, this should only be done if you have experience in doing this. Ideally, we would recommend having this work carried out by a specialist. Not only will this save you  time, these professionals will have the right equipment to eliminate any side-to-side movement of the wheel.

When should my motorcycle wheels be straightened?

Your wheels always need to be straight, so you should do this whenever they have been knocked out of shape. This includes, for instance, minor accidents or driving over potholes.

Can I straighten motorbike wheels myself?

While you can true wheels yourself, we always advise against straightening them yourself. This is a very specific process and, because wheel rims are made of extremely brittle alloys, this can cause a problem. Striking or bending incorrectly, for example, can lead to cracking of the rim. Rather than risking this, and having to purchase an entire new rim as a result, it is better to have an expert complete the work.

Improving the aesthetic appearance of your wheels

Because a motorcycle has less vehicle body, many riders feel their wheels much more prominently. As a result, there is often a great desire by many drivers to make the wheels aesthetically attractive.

racing motorcycle in movement

The three best ways to help do this are:

  • Sandblasting
  • Painting
  • Chrome plating

All of these will help transform the aesthetic appearance in different ways. Yet these methods do not disrupt the overall shape, strength or purpose of your rims, wheels or tyres.

Hopefully, the information presented here has given you a quick guide on how to care and maintain your motorcycle wheels. Alongside your tyres, these are a vital area of your vehicle and can greatly improve, or negate, your driving comfort and safety.