How to Push Start a Motorcycle


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If you’re out on a ride or away from your garage with a dead battery, you’ve got a few options before you need to call a tow.

Before you get going, you’ll want to check the simple things first as to why your motorcycle won’t start:

  • Check that the kill switch is in the right position.
  • Check that the petcock is in the right position.
  • Make sure you have enough gas.

If these things check out, you can move on to push starting the bike.

A battery that won’t hold a charge probably needs to be replaced, or there may be an issue with your motorcycle charging system.

How to Push Start a Motorcycle

A push-start, pop-start, bump start, or rolling start can also be used to get a bike going on a drained or dead battery.

All you’ll need to is gentle hill or someone to help you get the bike moving.

To push start a motorcycle:

  • Turn the key to the on position.
  • Pull in the clutch.
  • Make sure the fuel petcock is open.
  • Find a slight hill or have someone push you to get the bike rolling fast enough. Aim for about 5-10 mph.
  • Pull in the clutch level.
  • Put the bike into second gear.
  • Get up to speed.
  • Let go of (pop) the clutch.
  • The engine should fire up.

If it worked, the bike should be running again. Allow the engine to warm up, if necessary.

Assuming you have access to a portable jump starter, another motorcycle, or a car with some jumper cables, you can also try jump-starting your bike to get it going again.


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