Tires are one of the most important pieces of equipment for your motorcycle. They’re what keeps you connected to the road while riding and allow you to control the vehicle with ease. But just like any other part on a motorcycle, tires wear down over time and need replacement.
Replacing your tires is an important maintenance task that your motorcycle will need every once in a while. If you’re looking for the best Harley tires on the market, look no further than here!
Best for Touring (Rear) – Dunlop D402
Best for Touring (Front) – Michelin II or Dunlop D402 or American Elite
Best Budget (Touring) – Metzeler ME888
Best for Sportster – Dunlop D402 or American Elite
Best for Softail – Dunlop D402 or MU85B-16 or Michelin
Best for Dyna – Dunlop MH90-21 or Dunlop MT90B-16
Best for Street Glide – Michelin Commander
Best for Ultra Classic – Pirelli GT or Dunlop D402 or Shinko 777
Best for Road King – Dunlop D402
Best for Electra Glide – Michelin Commander II
Best White Wall – Dunlop D402
Best for Harley CVO – Dunlop D402 or Metzeler ME888
Best for V-Rod – Bridgestone Exedra
Best Radial Tire for Harley – American Elite All Season
Best Tire & Wheel for Baggers – Mototeks Fat Spoke
Brands – What Tires Harley Davidson Use
Dunlop Tires: Dunlop tires mean maximum grip, performance, and control, making them popular among bikers for their Harley Davidson model. In fact, Dunlop is the most prominent and reliable tire producer authorized by Harley.
Pirelli Tires: Pirelli tires last longer than many other motorcycle tire brands. What’s more, they’re known for their superior performance on wet surfaces compared to other brands.
Metzeler Tires: Metzeler is yet another popular brand that delivers great quality to riders. It has a good grip and does not wear out quickly.
Avon Tires: Avon is a reputed brand that promises better traction and longer life. Its unique tread pattern ensures high-performance on wet surfaces as well.
Best Harley Tires – Rear and Front
Signs of Bad Tire – When to Replace Your Harley Tire
There are several signs of a bad tire on your Harley, and you might not always be able to notice them. Some common symptoms of a badly inflated tire include:
- Wheel wobbling while riding owes to poor contraction or uneven distribution of pressure within the tire.
- Bouncing or shaking while riding due to pitted or uneven roads, a faulty suspension, or an underinflated tire.
- Cracks in the sidewall or a worn-out tread that doesn’t appear even probably indicate a tire with excessive mileage.
Tire replacement is not an expensive job, and you can do it yourself without having to spend too much money. Any time you notice one of the above signs, make sure to take immediate action and replace your bike’s tires.
Harley Davidson Tire Fitment Guide: Basic Information
Many people aren’t aware that their motorcycle requires particular types of tires. Different brands and models of Harley’s require different tire sizes and attributes. So, you need a Harley tire fitment chart to make sure you are buying the correct tires. Check out this link for more information about the fitment guide.
Quality Tire for Harley – Key Features
There are many aspects that you have to consider before picking out a tire for your Harley Davidson, including:
Tread Design – The tread design plays a vital role in how well it performs on wet surfaces and if multi-directional traction is needed.
Tread Depth – The average tread depth on most Harley Davidson tires is 7/32”, but some high-performance models have a deeper tread for better grip and traction.
Tube or Tubeless – Tubes are generally used for smaller bikes, while tubeless tires are more commonly found on larger motorcycles. It’s a personal choice, and an informed decision has to be made depending on the bike’s size and model.
What PSI Should Harley Tires Be?
Tires are rated according to the “PSI” or pounds per square inch pressure they can hold. The ideal tire pressure for Harley Davidson is 35 psi on the front wheel and 40 psi on the rear wheel – this is considered to be standard. If you’re riding a performance motorcycle, you might need to increase the pressure by 2-4 psi.
Why Harley Tires are Expensive – Main Reason
Harley Davidson tire replacement cost is higher than other brands. It’s because most motorcycle manufacturers use superior quality rubber, which ensures safety and durability. It contributes towards their high price. While the initial investment is high, it pays in the long run by improving the bike’s performance in various ways.
Dunlop vs. Michelin – Which is Better for Harley?
One of the most popular choices is between Dunlop and Michelin when it comes to Harley motorcycle tires. While these brands are reputed for their superior quality, they differ in various ways, so you need to choose which best suits your bike.
If you’re looking for maximum grip and performance on wet surfaces, Michelin is a better choice. Dunlop, on the other hand, is known for its superior quality and long life.
In general, both these brands have received positive reviews from riders across the world. So when replacing your Harley tires, you can’t go wrong with either of them.
Why Doesn’t Harley Produce Tires Itself?
Harley is a popular brand that manufactures motorcycles. However, it doesn’t have the expertise or infrastructure for making riding equipment like tires or tubes. This is why they are all outsourced to big tire brands with experience in this field, including, Dunlop, Michelin etc. The quality of these tires is guaranteed to be up to the mark, and your bike will perform better.
Harley Tire Installation Guide – Tools, Steps, Tips
- Socket Wrench to remove wheels
- Lug Wrench
- Socket extension bar
- Torque Wrench
- Tire Iron
- Jack Stand
- Wheel Chocks
- Grease Gun
- Bungee Cords
- Rubber Gloves
Steps Involved in Changing Harley’s Tires
Loosen the lug nuts on both front and rear wheels with a lug wrench. Then jack up your motorcycle, ensure it’s secure, and the wheels are off the ground.
Gently pry open the valve stem’s protective cap with a flathead screwdriver. This will make sure there isn’t any debris inside when you remove it later. Next, loosen the bolts on the tire’s side and take them off.
Now stand up the new tire on the ground next to your bike and a bit of rope if you need to pull it out in an emergency.
You can now carefully pull out your old tire and place the new one. Please take off the protective layer of the new inner tube, then insert it into the tire. Make sure to follow instructions on your motorcycle’s manual that comes with it about how to put it in the inner tube.
Once the inner tube is inside the tire, put back on the bolts and tighten them with a tire iron. Repeat these steps for your other tires as well to finish the process.
What Harley Harley Tires Used to Be – Tubes or Tubeless
When you think about old-fashioned Harley Tires, what comes to mind is the classic material used for making them – rubber. These were airtight or tubeless tires that ran at extremely high pressure for optimum performance. The higher the pressure, the better they gripped the roads.
How Do You Inflate Harley Tires?
Harley Motorcycle Tires must be inflated to the exact pressure as mentioned in your motorcycle’s manual. It ensures proper balance and grip for safer riding. Besides opening up the valve, make sure you check your tire pressure with a reliable air gauge to avoid over or underinflation.
What’s the Most Affordable Brand for Harley Tire?
When choosing your motorcycle tire, your priority should be quality and performance. Apart from these two factors, you might also need to check out the price factor for buying tires in bulk if you own multiple bikes. The most affordable tire brand for Harley is Probably the Shinko. Price of Shinko 712 Rear Tire (130/90-16) and Shinko 777 Rear Tire (150/80-16 Reinforced will amaze you.
Narrow or Wide Tire – What Does Harley Require?
Harley riders have a choice between either narrow or wide tires based on their riding style and preferences. Narrow tires provide a more rigid and responsive feel. They also deliver superior handling in turns, less power drain and better control over the bike.
Harley tires can be expensive, but various options are available in lower price ranges, which suit most riders. Selecting a tire is crucial for ensuring optimal performance of your motorcycle, and you should pick the right size and brand that best suits your needs.