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Easy Ways to Improve Motorcycle Engine Performance

Easy Ways to Improve Motorcycle Engine Performance

A motorcycle’s performance is determined by several factors. Just like any other vehicle, motorcycles need maintenance from time to time to ensure better performance.

Many riders add modifications to their motorcycles to increase engine performance. Modifications are considered an essential part of buying a bike, especially for enthusiasts looking to increase the horsepower of their bikes.

In this post, you will learn how you can improve your motorcycle’s engine performance.

Easy Ways to Improve Motorcycle Engine Performance

1. Improve the Air Intake

The bike's air intake system maintains the motorcycle’s engine and increases power output. Combustion occurs in the engine by burning a mixture of fuel and air. To further increase the engine’s power output, you would need to improve the air system. You can accomplish this by replacing your ride’s current air intake system with a larger one from the market. You will enable the engine to create more power in accordance with its efficiency, which you will feel when riding a motorbike.

A larger air intake system will increase airflow, which will in turn increase fuel consumption. But make sure not to leave the air filters exposed when making modifications. Make sure to conduct thorough research before making modifications to your motorcycle’s air intake system.

2. Improve the Exhaust

When you upgrade the air filter, you should also upgrade the exhaust.

Otherwise, you won't get the desired increase in power output if you only install one of the bolt-on modifications. Stock exhausts might not circulate air as effectively since manufacturers design them to adhere to emission regulations. To provide the extra horsepower and torque you need, you will have to install aftermarket slip-on or full exhaust systems.

Installing an aftermarket exhaust will result in better performance as these systems are lighter and expel exhaust fumes more effectively.

An easy way to increase your motorbike’s horsepower is by switching out the exhaust. A new exhaust will also improve your bike’s sound and look.

A new exhaust system for your motorbike can have the following benefits:

  • Increased horsepower
  • Increased torque
  • Reduced weight of the motorbike
  • Better mobility
  • Better engine efficiency and airflow
  • Reduces noise
  • Improves look

3. Modify Ignition

The ignition is the element that produces the energy needed to start your motorcycle. Your engine's ignition system uses energy to generate a spark, which ignites the mixture of air and fuel inside the combustion chamber. The main components are the ignition driver, ignition coil, spark plug, wires, and distributor. You can improve ignition by changing the control angles, as bigger control will result in stronger combustion. 

Otherwise, you can replace your standard spark plugs with gold- or platinum-plated ones. Their combustion chambers can create strong combustion almost as powerful as spark plugs with a larger spark.

4. Install Aftermarket Performance Muffler

Most OEM mufflers are built to ensure the motorcycles perform smoothly.

The OEM features added to your muffler can include the following:

  • Catalytic Converter
    Reduces the release of hazardous gasses like carbon monoxide
  • Resonator
    Reduces vibrations and noise
  • Longer Pipes
    Reduces emissions and raises the pressure in the engine, which helps lower power output.

Though these features can be found on an OEM muffler, a performance muffler often lacks these extra features. A high-performance muffler is often a simpler version of a stock version.

The lightweight design is intended to reduce the distance between the engine and the back of the exhaust system. A more efficient exhaust system will release more gasses and increase your engine’s power output.

When replacing the muffler, be careful when adjusting the combustion system to avoid accidentally disrupting the fuel-to-air ratio. You may always speak with your professional mechanic to learn about further alternatives for adjusting your combustion system to your new muffler.

5. Install Aftermarket Jet Kit

A motorcycle jet kit is advisable for bikes that have uneven fuel ratios.

A jet kit stabilizes the ratio, ensuring better combustion and increasing your motorcycle’s horsepower.

Most factory-made carbureted motorcycles come off the assembly line with uneven fuel ratios. To improve the performance of a carburetor engine, consider installing an aftermarket jet kit. Jet kits include a selection of jets, a new needle, required springs or shims, installation instructions, and jetting guidelines. Make sure to check the jet kits for specific airbox and exhaust modifications to ensure better power output.

6. Use Fuel Filters

Fuel filters purify the fuel of clumps, grime, dirt, and other contaminants before it enters the engine, ensuring more efficient combustion. To maintain or improve engine performance, make sure to buy high-quality fuel filters and replace them regularly. Filters eliminate clumps, grime, dirt, and more, making the fuel purer and easier to combust.

Check the fuel filter regularly for any signs of damage or faults, as broken filters will result in the fuel being contaminated and reducing combustion. This can also result in issues like the exhaust backfiring or releasing sudden bursts of flames.

7. Adjust Your Gears

Adjusting the gears or making tiny changes to the structure of your motorcycle can help improve your motorcycle’s performance. To make the wheels turn faster, consider adding or removing sprocket teeth.

Another thing you can do is fit your bike with lighter parts to reduce overall weight and improve maneuverability. Additionally, it reduces the force of gravity so you can move more quickly.

You can also replace the steel motorbike parts with titanium and aluminum ones. Besides being lighter, aluminum and titanium are equally as durable as steel.

To help your motorbike travel faster, you may want to consider removing parts you don't use frequently. You can also get lightweight, customizable exhaust systems with detachable mufflers. Before making any significant adjustments, just be sure to follow all motorcycle requirements. For additional luggage, you can add saddlebags, tank bags, sissy bar bag, and backpack.

8. Use Aftermarket Tuner

Aftermarket tuner allows you to modify the stock settings to ensure better control. Tuners can come in manual, electronic, and automated versions. They function similarly to a carburetor as they can adjust the flow of fuel and air in the combustion chamber, improving combustion efficiency.

You can also adjust your motorcycle's engine control unit (ECU). The ECU essentially consists of a computer chip responsible for controlling fuel supply, air management, fuel injection, and ignition. Modifying this component can improve your motorcycle's performance.

The more technical term for modifying the ECU is “reflashing.” Reflashing involves changing the stock code and optimizing the connected systems to be more efficient. If necessary, seek the advice of a licensed motorcycle mechanic and programmer.

However, reflashing could have several detriments, including increased fuel consumption, heat generated, and reduced engine life. After reflashing, keep an eye out for any mechanical issues that you may need to quickly fix.

9. Lubricate the Chain

Many motorcycles are driven by chains, by adjusting and lubricating them you can increase your motorcycle engine performance. The chain connects the engine with the rear wheel, ensuring smooth power transmission. Always clean and lubricate the chain to guarantee power transmission continues to work optimally. This will improve your motorcycle’s horsepower and protect the chain from wear and tear.

10. Improve Compression

By changing the compression ratio, you can improve your motorcycle’s performance. The process of improving compression differs between engine types. Changing the compression ratio of a two-stroke engine will require milling the head, while for a four-stroke engine, you will need to replace the piston with one that has a more dome shape.

Keep in mind that altering the compression ratio will require changing the type of fuel you need. You’ll need higher octane fuel if you increase the compression ratio, which tends to cost more than standard fuel.

11. Use Synthetic Lubricants

Synthetic lubricants are more effective at reducing friction and help the engine last longer than conventional oils. Synthetic lubricants can last longer due to being able to handle high stress and heat. They can improve your motorcycle engine’s performance and offer excellent temperature and weather protection.

12. Reduce the Weight of the Bike

Reducing your motorcycle’s weight will ensure it travels faster, has better mobility, and improves acceleration. One way to do this. If your motorcycle has a two-up riding seat, but you never ride with a passenger, replace it with a single-rider seat which will be much lighter.

Another way you can reduce the weight of your bike is by not completely refilling the fuel tank. Though it's not ideal to ride on fumes, you don't always need a full fuel tank. Your motorcycle having less fuel will ensure it is carrying less weight.

Adding a lithium-ion battery to replace a lead-acid battery is a reasonable modification as it is incredibly light. This will help improve the motorcycle's acceleration, braking, and handling.

13. Replace Spark Plugs

Spark plugs provide the spark that ignites the air-fuel combination during combustion. A spark plug needs to ignite between 500 to 5,000 times per minute depending on speed, pressure, and heat fluctuations.

If a spark plug is faulty, it can bring out poor engine performance. Additionally, it has a negative effect on gasoline usage. In extreme circumstances, it may potentially result in significant engine damage.

You can use an alternative to the standard spark plugs, like the iridium spark plugs, which are theoretically of greater quality, and can be used in place of conventional spark plugs in many motorcycle models. The iridium spark plug’s central electrode tip is made of an iridium alloy. One of the world's hardest metals, iridium has a melting point of 2,450 °C, making it resistant to extreme heat. Because of this, iridium spark plugs typically last twice as long as standard spark plugs and can increase the motorcycle’s speed.

14. Last Words

Purchasing, maintaining, and modifying a motorcycle is part of the motorcycle enthusiast's experience. Most riders, especially racers, and off-roaders, want to improve their bikes’ engine performance. You can achieve maximum performance by following the modification tips discussed in this article. You’ll experience more enjoyable riding after these modifications.

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