New Rider FAQs




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New motorcycle riders and those interested in getting their motorcycle license obviously has some questions.

This page will cover some common questions new riders have.

Have some other questions that we’ve missed? Let us know in the comments below!

Why ride a motorcycle?

If you’re still weighing your options where a life as a motorcyclists is for you, here are some of the top reasons to ride:

  • There’s an incredible sense of freedom when you’re on two wheels.
  • It’s a great way to explore and adventure, and to experience an area in a new way.
  • You can significantly reduce your commute time.
  • You’ll have lower costs for maintenance, fuel, insurance, and registration.
  • Being a motorcycle rider can make you a better and safer driver overall.

Why are Motorcycles so Loud?

Unlike cars, motorcycle’s have shorter exhausts and mufflers and no engine compartment to block the noise.

All the engine noises and exhaust pipe sounds are mostly open to the atmosphere – making them much louder.

The volume of a specific motorcycle varies depending on engine size, engine type, and the types of pipes installed.

How to Make a Motorcycle Exhaust Sound Deeper?

If you’re looking to get a deeper sound out of your bike, you’ve got some options.

Some common ways to change the exhaust sound on a motorcycle include:

  • Replacing or modifying the stock muffler.
  • Removing the baffles.
  • Upgrading your exhaust system.

Is Revving Your Engine Bad for your Motorcycle?

Prolonged revs without moving can be bad for your engine. This may cause undue wear on your piston rings and cylinders and can overheat your engine.

Normal revving, however, is perfectly fine for your motorcycle.

If you’re warming up your bike, you may need to rev it to keep the engine moving at first.

Can Motorcycles Park Anywhere?

With their small size and maneuverability, you’d think motorcycles can park anywhere they can fit, right?

Unfortunately, that’s not the case.

The same parking laws that apply to cars also apply to motorcycles, such as:

  • Don’t park where signs prohibit it.
  • Don’t park at red curbs or on stripped parking spots.
  • Don’t park on the sidewalk.
  • Don’t park between parking spaces.

How to Park a Motorcycle

When parking on the street, you should typically:

  • Park the bike at a perpendicular angle from the curb.
  • Have the front of the bike facing the street.
  • Set the kickstand on a hard surface.

How to Park a Motorcycle on a Hill?

To park your motorcycle on a hill:

  • Angle it from the curb with the back wheel against the curb.
  • Make sure the bike is facing uphill.
  • Leave it in gear.
  • Set the kickstand on a solid surface.

Do you need a Motorcycle License to Ride a Motorcycle?

If you plan on riding a motorcycle with an engine size of 50cc and up, you’re going to need a motorcycle license or endorsement.

Your standard driver’s license will not suffice.

Operating a motorcycle is a lot different than driving a car.

Learn what you need to do to get a motorcycle license in your state.

Can you use Car Oil in your Motorcycle?

You should refer to your motorcycle owner’s manual for the exact type of oil you should be using in your engine.

However, motorcycle engines typically require motorcycle engine oil. Motorcycle oil is designed for wet-clutch operation and may include different additives than car oils.

If you’re in a pinch, you can get away with using car oil in your bike, but this should be swapped out for proper motorcycle engine oil as soon as your able.

How to Carry Extra Fuel on a Motorcycle?

If you’re planning to do some adventure riding or touring in areas where you might not have easy or frequent access to gas stations, you’ll need to carry some extra fuel on your bike.

The safest and best way to do so if by using an appropriate fuel container and attaching it to side racks or panniers on the bike.

Can You Ride a Motorcycle Home After Buying it?

If the bike is currently registered with valid plates, you can typically ride the bike after purchasing it.

Some states may require you to get a temporary registration to do so.

You’ll then have a grace period of about 10 to 30 days to title and register the motorcycle in your name.

If the bike is not currently titled and registered, you will not be able to ride it on public streets, and you’ll need to tow the bike home.

Find more tips on buying a motorcycle.

How Tall do you need to be to Ride a Motorcycle?

There is not minimum height to ride a motorcycle.

Different motorcycles are designed for different sized riders, and many can be adjusted to accommodate rider height.

As a general rule of thumb, you should be able to sit comfortable on the bike, reach all the controls without stretching, and be able to balance the bike at a stop with the balls of your feet and toes on the ground.

Motorcycle passengers need to be able to reach the passenger foot rests comfortably.

Learn how to pick the best beginner motorcycle.

Can You Ride a Motorcycle in Shorts and Flip Flops?

Legally you can, but you’d be foolish to do so.

Wear the proper riding gear whenever you’re riding a motorcycle. This includes:

  • Long, sturdy pants and jacket.
  • Closed-toe, over-the-ankle shoes.
  • Gloves.
  • Helmet.

Can Motorcycles get Wet?

Yes, it is okay for your motorcycle to get wet.

i.e. If you leave your motorcycle out in the rain one day, it will be alright.

However, prolonged exposure to water and moisture can cause problems.

Check out our reviews for the best motorcycle covers.

How to Brake on a Motorcycle?

Braking on a motorcycle requires both your hands and feet.

The right hand operates the front brake lever and the right foot operates the rear brake lever.

The best way to brake on a motorcycle is to operate the front brake and rear brake at the same time.

While the majority of your stopping power is provided by the front brake, using both brakes at the same time will allow you to stop more quickly and with more control.

More Topics for New Riders

What is ABS on a motorcycle?

What is CC in motorcycles?

How do you change gears on a motorcycle?

How to Corner on a Motorcycle

How Dangerous is Riding a Motorcycle?

Learning to Ride a Motorcycle

Motorcycle Clubs

About the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally

How Much is it to Rent a Motorcycle?

What to do with your motorcycle helmet when you park?

Best Motorcycle Apps

Is lane splitting legal?

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