Of all motorcycle parts and features, the brakes may be among the most essential and life-saving. Without proper brakes, even the most skilled and experienced motorcycle rider can get injured during a ride that would’ve otherwise gone smoothly and safely. Fortunately, if you feel as though there’s something wrong with your motorcycle’s front brakes, there are multiple steps you can take in order to troubleshoot the issue before bringing your bike into a motorcycle supply shop for maintenance. Here’s a quick guide to help you troubleshoot some of the most issues with front motorcycle brakes.
Problem: Strange/Mysterious Vibrations Or Noises
If you start to hear or feel strange vibrations or noises coming from your motorcycle, it could be an issue with the brake pads. Brakes on an aggressively ridden streetbike can heat up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, while the pads and discs on a racebike may exceed 600 degrees. This can wear down the brake pads over time and cause the need for a repair or replacement.
Of course, these symptoms may also arise as a result of issues occurring within the front fork or wheel. You don’t necessarily want to go through the trouble of replacing your brake pads yourself unless you know that that’s the cause of the issue, so it’s always best to take your motorcycle to a trusted repair shop. It’s also a good idea to refer to the manufacturer’s manual of your bike for additional tips or pieces of maintenance advice regarding your motorcycle brakes.
Problem: Soft Lever
As another common issue with motorcycle brakes, having a soft brake lever most likely indicated a problem with the master cylinder.
“Inspect the front brake hose and its fittings on the master cylinder, positioned on the right handlebar, and the front wheel’s brake caliper. Look for obvious signs of damage, such as cracks or leaks that can allow air and dirt to enter the brake circuit. Replace the brake hose and fittings if they are damaged in any way,” writes Chris Gilliland on It Still Runs.
Ultimately, understanding how to perform basic troubleshooting steps is the key to diagnosing your motorcycle’s issue and getting back on the road as soon as possible. For more information about motorcycle parts, contact K and G Cycles.