Why Are New Motorcycle Tires Slippery?

If you have ever purchased a new motorcycle or replaced your tires, you may have noticed that they can be quite slippery.

It’s not uncommon for riders to experience a feeling of instability and lack of control when riding on new tires.

But why is this the case?

There are several factors that contribute to the slipperiness of new motorcycle tires.

From the manufacturing process to the materials used, these factors can affect the grip and handling of your bike.

Understanding why your new tires are slippery can help you take precautions and adjust your riding style accordingly, ensuring a safe and enjoyable ride.

Tire Manufacturing Process

When it comes to new motorcycle tires, one of the most common complaints is their slipperiness. But why is this the case? The answer lies in the tire manufacturing process.

During production, a layer of release agent is applied to the surface of the tire mold to prevent the rubber from sticking to it. This release agent can remain on the surface of the tire even after it has been removed from the mold, creating a slippery film that can be dangerous for motorcyclists.

Additionally, new tires often have a waxy coating applied during shipping and storage to protect them from damage and aging. This coating can also contribute to their slipperiness until it wears off with use.

It’s important for riders to take extra caution when riding on new tires until they have been properly broken in. This involves gradually increasing speed and leaning angles over several rides, allowing the tire’s surface to wear down and provide a better grip.

By understanding why new motorcycle tires are slippery and taking appropriate precautions, riders can stay safe on the road.

Tire Materials

After going through the tire manufacturing process, new motorcycle tires may still have a slippery surface. This is because of the materials used in making them.

Tire manufacturers use a release agent to prevent the rubber from sticking to the molds during production. This agent creates a thin layer on the surface of the tire that needs to be worn off before the tire can provide maximum grip.

Additionally, new motorcycle tires are made with softer rubber compounds than car tires. This softness allows for better grip and traction on the road, especially when taking corners at high speeds. However, this also means that new tires need time to warm up and for their surfaces to become rougher through use.

Until then, riders should exercise caution when riding on new tires and avoid sudden acceleration or hard braking to prevent slipping and accidents.

Tire Pressure

Now that we know why new motorcycle tires are slippery, let’s talk about how to ensure optimal performance.

One of the most important factors is tire pressure. Maintaining proper tire pressure not only improves handling and traction but also extends the life of your tires.

Underinflated tires can cause the tire to flex too much, which increases rolling resistance and generates excess heat. This can lead to premature wear, reduced fuel economy, and even blowouts at high speeds.

On the other hand, overinflated tires reduce the contact patch with the road, resulting in less grip and a harsher ride. Therefore, it’s essential to check your tire pressure regularly and adjust it according to the manufacturer’s recommendations for your specific motorcycle model.

Temperature Variations

Now that we know why new motorcycle tires are slippery, it’s important to understand how temperature variations can affect their performance.

As tires heat up during use, the rubber becomes more pliable and provides better traction on the road. However, in colder temperatures or when first starting out on a ride, the tires may not have warmed up enough to reach their optimal level of grip.

This is why it’s crucial to take extra precautions when riding in colder weather or after a period of inactivity. Riders should take it slow and gradually build up speed until they feel confident in their tire’s grip.

Additionally, it’s recommended to invest in tires that are specifically designed for colder temperatures or wet conditions, as these will provide better traction and improve overall safety on the road.

By staying aware of temperature changes and taking necessary precautions, riders can ensure a smooth and safe ride every time.

Tire Wear And Tread Patterns

As motorcycle tires are brand new, they can be quite slippery. This is because of the release agents used in the manufacturing process. Release agents are essentially a lubricant that is sprayed onto the tire mold to ensure the tire comes out smoothly and without any defects.

However, these release agents also coat the surface of the tire, which can make it slippery until they wear off. Once you have ridden on your new tires for a few miles, the release agents will start to wear off and traction will improve. It’s important to take it easy on new tires until this happens, especially in wet conditions where traction is reduced even further.

You may also notice that after some time, your tires begin to develop a pattern of wear. This is normal and necessary for maintaining good traction on the road.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Do Motorcycle Tires Typically Last?

Motorcycle tires typically last between 5,000 to 20,000 miles depending on the type of tire and riding conditions.

The lifespan of a tire can also vary based on the rider’s driving habits and maintenance practices.

It is important to regularly check tire pressure, tread depth, and overall condition of the tires to ensure safety while riding.

Proper maintenance can help extend the life of motorcycle tires and save riders money in the long run.

Can I Use Car Tires On My Motorcycle?

Can you use car tires on your motorcycle?

The short answer is no.

While it may seem like a cost-effective solution, car tires are not designed for the specific demands of a motorcycle.

Motorcycle tires have a different profile and construction that allows them to handle the lean angles and cornering forces unique to two-wheeled vehicles.

Car tires may also be too wide for the rims on your motorcycle, affecting handling and stability.

It’s essential to choose the right tires for your bike to ensure safety and optimal performance on the road.

Are All Motorcycle Tires Created Equal?

Are all motorcycle tires created equal?

This is a common question among riders, and the answer is no. There are different types of motorcycle tires designed for various purposes, such as sport touring or off-roading.

Additionally, factors like tread pattern, rubber compound, and tire size can greatly affect a tire’s performance. It’s essential to choose the right type of tire for your specific riding needs to ensure optimal safety and performance on the road.

What Should I Do If I Experience A Tire Blowout While Riding?

If you’re out riding your motorcycle and suddenly experience a tire blowout, it can be a scary and dangerous situation.

The first thing to do is remain calm and try to maintain control of the bike. Gradually ease off the throttle and gently apply the brakes to slow down.

As you come to a stop, try to move as far off the road as possible to avoid being hit by other vehicles. Once you’ve safely stopped, assess the damage and call for assistance if needed.

It’s important to always check your tires before every ride and replace them if they are worn or damaged to prevent blowouts from occurring in the first place.

What Is The Difference Between Radial And Bias-Ply Motorcycle Tires?

The difference between radial and bias-ply motorcycle tires is an important consideration when choosing new tires for your bike.

Radial tires have a different construction than bias-ply tires, which affects their handling, durability, and ride quality.

While radial tires are generally considered superior to bias-ply tires in terms of performance, they may not be the best choice for all riders or all types of riding.

It’s important to understand the differences between these two types of tires so you can make an informed decision when purchasing new motorcycle tires.


Overall, understanding motorcycle tires is crucial for any rider. Knowing how long they typically last and the differences between radial and bias-ply options can make a big difference in your riding experience.

It’s important to remember that not all motorcycle tires are created equal, so it’s essential to choose the right one for your specific needs. If you’re considering using car tires on your motorcycle, think again. While it may seem cost-effective at first, it can be dangerous and even illegal in some states.

Additionally, if you ever experience a tire blowout while riding, it’s important to stay calm and follow proper procedures to maintain control of your bike.

Finally, new motorcycle tires can be slippery due to a release agent used during manufacturing. This is why it’s important to break them in properly before taking any long rides.

With these tips in mind, you can enjoy a safe and enjoyable ride on your motorcycle for years to come.

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