Dirt Bike Wheel Maintenance & Dirt Bike Wheel Size Guide

Wheels and tires in a dirt bike are the second most important thing right after its engine. It helps you transmit the power from the engine and throttle to the earth that lets it move. So, it should always be in perfect condition and you need to maintain your dirt bike wheels nicely.

When it comes to dirt bike wheel maintenance and care, there isn’t just a single thing but a whole lot of things coming under the net. Covering every single part would take a lot of time. So we are here with a brief yet complete and actionable dirt bike wheel maintenance guide. This guide covers all those tasks you need to make sure of, in order to get the most out of your dirt bike wheels.

So, we will start things in order and gradually give everything a touch. First, let’s start with the dirt bike wheel size and what you need to know about them.

Dirt Bike Wheel Size

Well, the right heading should be dirt bike tire size instead of this. Some people may use the words wheel and tire interchangeably, but they both are two different things. A wheel is basically an alloy or metallic rim that consists of spokes, a tire tube hole, and a wheel hub. While a tire is just a black rubber that interacts with the road or tracks you are riding at. We’ll look at the tires for now!

Now, this tire may look like just a standard tire with a couple of numbers written on them, but it’s a complete design. With these numbers, the manufacturer defines you with the actual sizing of a tire. Now depending upon the brand, understanding those sizes may vary too. Some might be simple as usual while others may not be easy to understand. But we’ll elaborate on that too!

Nowadays, dirt bike tires come with three number series that let you understand the size guide. This could be the diameter of the wheel, and the difference between two walls in that tire with the aspect ratio. Generally, everything is in inches, but a couple of information notes are standardized in Millimeters too.

Let’s make things simpler for you so you don’t need to memorize any formula or have a calculator in your hand. As time passes, everything changes, and the wheel size too. Currently, most things are in the metric system of measurements and modern tires now come with additional information too.

Alright, the very first number right in the beginning is to tell you about the width of your tire. A new tire will be wider because it has never been under any use. While the old tires will not be that wide as it has been rotating for thousands of kilometers. The difference between these values can be used to measure tire health.

After the width, you will see a slash or a dash to separate the width value with the aspect ratio written right next to it. This shows how tall your tire is in terms of the depth of your wheel. In most cases, it is an indirect measurement and that’s why it is known as aspect RATIO. This is just to show you how tall your tire is.

Right next to the aspect ratio, you get a slash and then a value that shows your tire diameter. This is obviously in inches as the MM value would need more space. So, you can see what rim you can fit that tire at. However, the diameter is always the opposite.

See this guide for Truing a Dirt bike Wheel

For example, if your tire has a high aspect ratio, it is for an 18” wheel. There could be other things written too, like the date of manufacturing, batch and tire pressure, and even the load capacity that the tire can hold. But it’s not on every tire.

With all this data in your hand, you can pick a nice tire for your dirt bike because a good tire is directly proportional to your bike performance, riding experience, fuel economy, and comfort as well. If your bike is a lower CC, you would need a slim or a skinny tire as it would be easy to spin and your engine won’t take a lot of power.

For example, a 120mm wide tire isn’t going to be a good choice for a 125cc dirt bike. Similarly, a 90mm dirt bike is the worst thing you can add to a 500cc machine because you will lose control, traction, and everything.

Are dirt bike wheels interchangeable? Are dirt bike wheels universal?

Well, you need to elaborate on this a little bit. What exactly do you mean by “interchangeable”? Is it flipping your rear and front tires, or replacing the tire from one bike to another? Let’s discuss both these things.

As per my experience so far, you can interchange the wheel of one dirt bike with another one, be it the same brand or two different brands (in limited cases only). But, if you are talking about interchanging the front wheel with the rear wheel within a dirt bike, sorry guys! This isn’t possible. Because they both are of different widths. The hub and fittings will be different too.

Generally, the front wheel of a dirt bike is thicker and bigger or you can say a dirt bike has a large front wheel. But there are obviously a couple of reasons. First, with the large wheel, you will get good comfort as you are riding on uneven and adventurous terrains. Then, they are generally easier to control due to their bulkiness and large size. Both the control and handlings are pretty exceptional.

How To Clean Dirt Bike Wheels?

Rusty, nasty and muddy dirt bike wheels look very bad and disgusting. Dirt bike wheels are supposed to get dirty quicker especially if you are riding across the country with no proper roads. You need to clean your dirt bike wheels regularly.

Especially, if your wheels are rusting, you need to take it seriously before its strength vanishes off entirely and there would be nothing left but to change it entirely. But, how to clean dirt bike wheels if you don’t know? Don’t worry, I will tell you some methods with instructions to get this thing done.

Use a cleaning Agent

Preferably WD-40 because it is cheaper and available anywhere. In fact, it should always be in your toolkit because it is a very effective and common solution for mechanical things. To clean your dirt bike wheels, you will need to have a bottle of WD40, an abrasive, and a clean yet smooth cloth.

First, gently wash your tire off to remove anything which is removable in this way. Then, apply a complete layer of this agent and let everything settle for 10-15 minutes. Within this time, the agent will start working to remove rust and it may take a couple more minutes. To fasten the process, use an abrasive and that’s it!

You can powder coat your dirt bike wheels too, but it is a slightly expensive thing. It may cost you around $200-250 for both rims. It will add beauty to your bike and the wheels would be safe and shiny. This may take some time as preparing spokes and hub may take a couple more minutes.

Otherwise, you can paint dirt bike wheels which is a way cheaper but a slightly critical process. But painting dirt bike wheels will give a pretty much similar effect as powder coating. The only thing you need to know is how to paint dirt bike wheels. For that, just check out this video guide and do that accordingly.

Leave a Comment