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Can Dirt Bikes Go Through Water? How to Ride Through Water

Can Dirt Bikes Go Through Water? How to Ride Through Water

Riding a dirt bike through water can seem like a thrilling ride. You may have seen videos of riders speeding through ponds and puddles with mud and water flying up around them. But can it actually be done and what is the risk of damage to your bike?

As a general rule, dirt bikes can go through water as long as it is not higher than the engine frame. If a bike gets submerged in water, this runs the risk of water entering the engine and causing serious damage.

Water and engines don’t mix well, but that doesn’t mean you need to avoid water altogether. Keep reading to find out if your dirt bike can actually handle going through water and how to do it.

Can Dirt Bikes Go Through Water?

Dirt bikes offer a unique off-roading experience and can handle various types of terrain. However, that doesn’t mean they can do everything.

A dirt bike is designed with a stiff suspension and special wheels that allow you to ride over rough terrain. Though this does include small rivers, puddles, and streams, these bikes are not made to handle deep or fast-flowing water.

Generally, you’ll want to avoid water levels that are deeper than the engine frame. This will help you avoid any damage to your machine.

Here’s a helpful video guide for water crossing on a dirt bike:

Dirt bikes are not built like other water-based recreational vehicles such as jet skis. The engine is more exposed meaning that there is a high risk of drowning the engine if the vehicle is submerged. This could cause major damage to the engine and even the bike’s electrical components.

I recommend using This Chain Wax Spray Found Here on Amazon to help protect your chain from rusting from the water.

Can a Dirt Bike Go Through Mud?

If you ride your bike throughout the seasons, it’s inevitable that you will at some point experience mud.

Though mud isn’t detrimental to your bike’s health right away, it can wreak havoc and impact your ability to ride. Generally, when riding in mud, it’s good to grease your bike well beforehand. This prevents the mud from sticking which can bog it down.

You should also avoid riding in deep mud, especially if the mud is more on the watery side. This can have the same impact as riding in water, which could harm the engine.

Can You Ride a Dirt Bike in the Rain?

Though water can damage the bike if it is submerged, your dirt bike is perfectly safe to ride in the rain. In fact, they are designed to be ridden in a range of conditions, including rainy weather.

However, riding in the rain can be riskier, so it’s important to take a few precautions.

  • Make sure your bike is well lubricated
  • Avoid large puddles and streams
  • Replace worn tires
  • Manually dry after riding

Drying off your bike after riding in the rain can help prevent rust. You’ll also want to avoid storing outside and letting it sit in the rain consistently.

How Do You Ride a Dirt Bike Through Water?

If it comes to riding through water, there are a few things to keep in mind to avoid drowning your engine. As always, don’t attempt to ride through water that is higher than the engine frame. However, even lower levels of water can harm your bike if you aren’t careful.

Here are a few tips to help you out when riding through water:

  • Approach slowly
  • Keep a constant throttle so that you don’t get stuck
  • Distribute your weight to the back of your bike
  • Keep distance from other riders
  • Use your legs for balance

If all else fails, never be afraid to get off your bike and walk it through the water.

I recommend using This Chain Wax Spray Found Here on Amazon to help protect your chain from rusting from the water.

Can You Ride a Motorcycle Across Water?

If you’ve ever seen those scenes in action movies where someone rides across a lake on a dirt bike, you might be wondering if it’s actually possible.

While it is possible to ride a motorcycle across the water, it is considerably difficult to achieve, requiring major modifications to the bike and extreme skill from the rider. 

Keep in mind, however, that if the attempt fails and the bike gets submerged this could cause serious damage.

What Should You Do If You Drown Your Dirt Bike?

If you happen to enter water that was deeper than you anticipated, you run the risk of flooding your engine. This occurs when water enters the combustion chamber through the air intake and causes the engine to water lock.

If you’re lucky, the engine will merely stop and not cause any additional harm. If you’re not so lucky, hydro locking can cause serious engine damage, necessitating a costly engine rebuild or engine replacement. So what can you do about it?

If your dirt bike goes under water, kill the engine and return it to dry land as fast as possible. The longer the bike is in water, the more potential harm there is. Once on land, you’ll need to begin the process of repairing your bike.

How to Repair Your Dirt Bike If You Drown It

Avoid starting your bike once out of the water. Instead, remove the spark plug, then check the air filter and airbox. If these are dry, then you might be good to go.

If they are wet, you’ve got more work on your hands to get your bike running again:

  • Drain the exhaust. You must totally drain the water from the exhaust system or else the engine will not run.
  • Drain the cylinders. This is done by turning over the motor with the spark plugs removed.
  • Start the engine. Once you have all of the water out, put it all back together and start the engine.

After you get home, you’ll also want to make sure to change the oil to make sure it is free of water and can cause any more damage. 

Final Thoughts

If you ride regularly, sooner or later you’re going to come across a path filled with mud or water. While it is possible to ride your dirt bike through water, remember to avoid anything too deep so that you don’t cause damage to the engine.

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