Yorkshire and Humber - A62
Road: A62 - Where: Yorkshire
Tyres. It's a cliche but they are the only thing between your bike and the road; whether you’re riding on the A62, or any other route in the UK. They transmit all the acceleration, braking and cornering forces the bike generates, while dealing with road imperfections, pot holes, dust, dirt and wet. As such, they're a part of your bike which should be looked after. There are several basic care tips for motorcycle tyres which we've detailed below.
The most fundamental part of tyre care - the tyre pressures. Regular checks of your tyre pressure stops uneven wear, reduces the risk of serious damage to the tyre, and improves riding experience. Each manufacturer specifies the "correct" front and rear tyre pressures for your bike, but feel free to play +-2psi depending on your own riding style.
2. Wear and damage checks
Keeping an eye on how your tyres are wearing will give you a good idea of when to replace your tyres. As the tyre wears, wet grip and specifically aquaplaning performance will reduce. If you do a lot of commuting miles, you might find the tyre "squares off", where the crown of the tyre flattens, leaving the motorbike difficult to turn and unstable mid corner.
Tyres have a shelf life, and as soon as they've left the factory they're starting to degrade. This process is very slow, but is sped up by things like UV light and dramatic temperature changes. Most tyre manufacturers recommend no more than six years, but in our experience we find it's best to replace low mileage motorbike tyres at the three to four year mark.
All tyres have a "DOT" code printed on them which shows the month and year the tyre was produced. This is a four digit code representing a week number and year, so "4316" would be manufactured in week 43 of 2016.
If you put your bike away for winter, it's best practice to get the weight of the bike away from the tyres to avoid flat spots. Front and rear paddock stands are ideal, and will have your tyres feeling perfectly round when you resume riding in the spring. Just be careful for the first few miles as oils from the tyres can move to the surface, and offer reduced grip.
The Swinton View on Riding the A62
Although motorcyclists make up just one per cent of road traffic, they account for nearly one in every five road-user deaths. Because you’re more vulnerable on the road riding a motorbike, it’s hugely important you take every precaution to stay safe.
Wear the right safety gear, know your route, plan for the weather, and give yourself plenty of time to finish your ride without rushing. It’s also vital that you’re fully insured and that your motorbike insurance policy covers everything you need it to. Enjoy the ride!