New dirt bike? Check. Helmet on? Check. Trail picked out? Check. Ready to go? Nope! Believe it or not, a new dirt bike isn’t ready for regular use right out of the dealership like a car. Taking it for a ride without proper prep can damage your bike – and make you look like an idiot. Follow these steps to break in your dirt bike like a pro before hitting the trail.
Check the Bike
Your bike may be assembled, but that doesn’t mean it’s ready. Check that all nuts, bolts, spokes, and other pieces are tight so your bike doesn’t fall apart on its first use. Pour in high-quality oil (check your manual for how much), remembering to oil the air filter, too. If you already see a need for any replacements, get the best OEM for motocross.
Prep the Engine
Going too hard on the engine right away and not warming it up are the top rookie mistakes. Put it through a heat cycle three times first:
- Let the engine idle for 10 minutes, occasionally revving.
- Turn off the engine and wait for it to fully cool before repeating the process twice more.
- An optional step is to take it for a short test ride at a low idle speed in between heat cycles or in place of the second cycle.
An alternate method is to warm up the engine and then go for a moderate ride for 10 to 15 minutes. Let the engine cool down before repeating, increasing the ride length to 20 minutes by the third or fourth time.
No matter the method you choose, take it easy the first few rides. Avoid steep hills, long inclines, and deep sand. Only enter high RPMs in short bursts.
After your ride, make any necessary adjustments, and change the oil again after a couple more rides.
Now that you’re all set, you can start adding the best dirt bike mods for better performance or aesthetics.