Motorcycle Bearings Replacement Q&A

When a motorcycle reaches a certain mileage, should you worry about replacing its bearings? Partzilla's motorcycle expert John Talley addresses this question from a viewer whose bike hit the 77km mark.

John goes live on our YouTube channel every Friday at 3pm Eastern, and in this session, one viewer was concerned about the suspension and steering stem bearings on a Honda CBR600. Here's what John had to say about replacing the bearings on a motorcycle with some mileage on it.

Motorcycle swingarm bearings

Motorcycle Steering Head & Suspension Bearings

I have an ‘07 Honda CBR 600RR with 77,000 km. Should I be concerned about steering head bearings or suspension bearings?

John Talley: Well, this is something you need to take a look at, especially one with that many miles. We didn’t do the bearing replacement on that one, but I did do a full bearing replacement, I think we did steering head and swingarm bearings on our GSXR 1000. So if you would, take a look at that playlist and just watch how I determined whether or not we needed to replace the bearings. It’s pretty easy to do. You just want to lift it up on a jack under the engine itself to where the back end is just hanging off, and you just want to rock it back-and-forth and feel its pivot points. Just see how they feel, and if it all feels solid, you’re going to be fine. Same thing for the front end. Bring up the front end to where the front tire is off the ground and just bring it out and back, and side-to-side to see if you have any play. If you’ve got some play, does that mean the bearings have to be replaced? No, it may just mean that the head bearings just need to be tightened down a little bit. … With the rear suspension, most of the time you’re going to find needle bearings in there, and when they start to wear, there is no tightening them. They’re just done. Now, the GSXR was a bit of an extreme case, but it really made it possible for me to show what you should be looking, feeling and listening for. 

Watch the video above to see how to replace the swingarm bearings on a Suzuki motorcycle.

Buy Suzuki bearing remover set

Buy Motion Pro bearing driver set

Watch the video below to see how to replace the front wheel bearings on a Suzuki motorcycle.

Watch the video below to see how to replace the rear wheel bearings on a Suzuki motorcycle.

Want to see more live repair questions answered? See more motorcycle and ATV questions answered here.  



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