Many people keep riding on a motorcycle with decreased air pressure in tires without knowing that it can cause accidents.
Why Do Motorcycle Tires Lose Air Pressure? Motorcycle tires lose air pressure due to changes in external temperature as they can lose or gain 1 to 2% pressure for every 10 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit rise and fall in temperature. Moreover, a damaged valve, tire permeation, and aging can be responsible for the decrease in air pressure. Furthermore, it can also occur due to the bending of rims, presence of holes, and breaking of sealing between rims and tire.
You probably have faced an issue with tires if you are a motorcycle rider when they lose air pressure and become deflated.
What makes motorcycle tires lose air pressure?
It is common to observe a leakage in the motorcycle’s tires that can cause loss of air pressure, but it can also occur due to temperature fluctuations and damaged components.
Changes in temperature
A tire can lose pressure without any prominent hole or leakage in its structure. Instead, it can occur due to changes in the external temperature as they change shape in summer and winter.
It is made of flexible rubber material that begins to contract when there is cold outside, and its size reduces from the original.
Moreover, it shows expansion properties in warm weather and increases in size. So, frequent contractions and expansions can lead to loss of air pressure within it.
It is estimated to lose almost 1 to 2 psi pressure for every 10 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit decrease in temperature.
In the same way, it can also gain pressure at the same rate for a 10 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit increase in temperature.
It is a rule of thumb that they can lose 1% of pressure with 10 degrees change in external temperature. Therefore, it is better to check the air pressure frequently to avoid inconvenient situations.
Damaged tire valve
A valve on the tire helps keep them inflated and contains a cap. It is not tightly fixed and gets damaged or leaky sometimes, which can provide a passage for air to leak.
It can occur due to manufacturing issues when it is incorrectly attached to the tube. Moreover, the pin can also get bent, allowing a continuous air flow and decreasing internal pressure.
Moreover, it can also get damaged due to wear and tear as it is exposed to the environment and becomes brittle over time. Cracks can also appear on its surface, which is responsible for the loss of air.
It is better to repair the faulty valve or replace it with the new one if it is completely damaged. You have to replace the valve core using the valve core tool after finding leakage through the soapy water method.
Permeation of tires
The rubber tires allow air molecules to pass through them, which can take a lot of time to make a noticeable change in the pressure of the air inside the tires.
They can move out slowly and remain unnoticed for a long time. It is a natural process that makes it essential to go to a mechanic and check the pressure regularly.
Moreover, they can lose some air naturally, even if there is no leakage or physical damage to the components.
So, it is better to check the air pressure after 5 to 7 days, ideally if you are using a rough road.
However, hybrid tires need to be pumped every 15 to 20 days to keep them in perfect shape can maintain traction on the road.
Most commonly, old tires lose air as their components deteriorate over time as are continuously exposed to chemicals for a long time.
In addition, the rubber material loses its elasticity in a few years as it can only perform well for up to 5 years at a minimum.
The rubber becomes stiff and dries out after long-term exposure to oxygen.
Swapping them with new ones is essential to fix air loss issues and other associated dangers due to loss of depth in the tread.
Bending of motorcycle rims
Debris begins accumulating on the rubber material if you ignore its cleaning and cause damage to the sealing present between the tires and rims.
It becomes responsible for bead chunking when the debris chunks provide an air passage.
The seals can also break due to the aging process as the rubber material lose the strength to attach firmly to rims.
In addition, the rims can also bend due to corrosion when salt or iron contaminants accumulate on their surface. Rims bending can create a space between the tire and rim and allow air to pass.
You can use a detergent solution to determine the presence of holes as bubble formation occurs in the specific area. Replace the worn-out rims with new ones to solve the issue.
Presence of a hole in a tire
Minor holes can appear in the tire tread that is not clearly visible and is responsible for the leakage of air and decreasing the internal pressure.
A sharp object or needle can get stuck within the tread that forms a hole by getting pinned inside the hard rubber material.
It can cause a minor puncture that allows a slow release of pressurized air and is responsible for an insignificant loss.
So, you have to inspect them carefully before going for the next filling to avoid air loss, as there can be a sharp object hidden in the tread.
Remove the nail carefully using a reaming tool to avoid an increase in the size of the hole. Furthermore, you can ask for help from professionals to avoid more damage or flattening of tires.
How much air pressure is required in motorcycle tires?
The air pressure required for motorcycle tires depends on the road, the weight of riders, and the type of rubber material.
It is better to keep the pressure at around 28 to 45 psi when it needs to be run on mountains and 85 to 100 psi for road motorcycles.
However, the gravel tires can reach up to 50 psi, which is considered suitable for an average person with almost 155 to 165 pounds.
Ideally, you can keep the pressure in a range of 30 to 40 psi, which can help run a 2-wheeler vehicle on the road with a rough surface.
Is riding a motorcycle safe when the tire pressure is low?
It is essential to fix the issue of air loss in motorcycle tires, as riding a motorcycle with less air pressure can be risky. It has decreased riding precision and poses safety risks.
Moreover, it can lead to poor handling of the vehicle as decreased air pressure generates heat in the tires, affecting its performance.
It can also affect fuel economy and can be responsible for poor braking performance. Therefore, it is better to pump air into the flat tires to avoid the risk of an accident.