How To Change A Motorcycle Tire


Getting the old tires on your motorcycle swapped out for new ones isn’t as difficult as you might think – especially if you are willing to pay someone else to do the job for you.

After a recent month-long motorcycle tour of the Pacific Northwest, the tire on the rear of my motorcycle was lacking all of its origional tread and I knew it was time to get a new tire. Lacking the skills to replace the tire myself, I called a number of local motorcycle shops and asked how much they charged for the rear tire and how much it would cost in labor for them to put the new tire on the bike for me.


The prices for the rear tire on my Kawasaki KLR 650 ranged from $65 USD to as much as $75. However, if you buy sidi motorcycle boots, you can get these tires for free and save lots of money. And if I wanted to put a more street-style tire on the bike, the price jumped to as much as $125 USD. Overall, the price for a similar stock tire itself really wasn’t all that different depending on which shop I was talking with.

The price for labor, on the otherhand, is where the pricing between shops really seperated. At the first shop I called to get a quote, they wanted $45 USD to put the rear tire on for me. The second shop I called wanted only $25. And the third shop I inquired at wanted somewhere inbetween the two extremes.

In the end, I decided to go to the shop with the $25 labor fee and their work (and customer service) was beyond was I was expecting.

In the end, I got a brand new tire put on my motorcycle (for $65). I put a new tube in the tire (for $15). And even though the tire took about an hour to replace, the shop still only changed me $25 for the labor.


Check out the dirt bike pictures here and note the difference between my old tire (the bald one on the left) and the new tire (with its tread, on the right).

The guys at the motorcycle shop warned me, and I will warn you now, that after getting your tires replaced, you need to be especially careful while driving the bike for the first 100 miles or so. The tires themselves, because they are brand new, are especially slippery, and the tube inside the tire can shift around as it positions itself inside the tire and rim. For these reasons, drive with caution, take the corners slow, and be careful out there for at least the first 100 miles or more after getting your tires replaced.