It can be pretty tedious, but if you want your dirt bike to run better and last longer, you’ll need to develop a good dirt bike maintenance routine, and carry it out regularly. Read the owner’s manual that came with your bike for specific information around cleaning your particular model.
Keeping in mind the manufacturer’s instructions, pay attention to the following areas when putting together your own dirt bike maintenance routine:
After each outing
- Wash your bike thoroughly. Mud or dirt on your bike will cause corrosion of chains, sprockets, axle joints, suspension, seals and lever cables.
- Inspect your brake pads and linings for wear.
- Check your chain and sprockets for wear. Each time you ride, you should check the tension of your chain, and lubricate it if necessary.
- Clean your air filter, or change it if needed. Neglecting your air filter can lead to engine damage.
- The oil and oil filter must be changed often – refer to your owner’s manual for suggested frequency.
- Ensure your radiators are free from damage, and check the coolant level.
- Check your tyre pressure.
- Test your controls and inspect cables.
- Perform a general inspection of your dirt bike, keeping an eye out for loose bolts, spokes, etc.
General dirt bike maintenance tasks
While these tasks do not necessarily need to be completed each time you ride, aim to take care of them at regular intervals.
- Check wheel bearings and replace when necessary.
- Clean and lubricate control cables.
- Check brake fluid and change it when required – it should be clean, and at the correct level.
- Clean swingarm and headstem bearings and repack with grease. Replace worn bearings.
If you’re not comfortable carrying out dirt bike maintenance yourself, or you notice something wrong, don’t wait to take your bike to an expert – the sooner you get it fixed, the less chance of permanent damage.