Research Tips for Buying Dirt Bikes

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There are a lot of variables that go into purchasing used dirt bikes, and there are a lot of ways for buyers to be taken advantage of if they aren’t dealing with a reputable vendor. At Southpaw Motorsports, we take pride in offering legitimate, reputable services when you come to us looking for your next dirt bike.

What are some of the things you should be checking on during a used dirt bike search to ensure that everything is above board? Here are a few common areas.


Thoroughly research what you want well in advance, including different makes and models that might fit your needs. Read product reviews online – these are a great resource from people who have already owned the products you’re interested in. Know what you’re expecting from a given model, and what shortcomings you should be expecting.

VIN Number

Always check the frame of the bike for the VIN number to ensure that the bike isn’t stolen. If you see a VIN number that’s been scratched off or removed, this is an indicator that the bike may have been stolen. This is never an issue you’ll run into at Southpaw.


Feel near the engine for heat radiating off the engine – this is a sign that the engine has been started prior to the visit. This could signal that the bike doesn’t start easily, which the seller could be trying to mask by warming it up in advance. Again, not an issue you’ll deal with when you visit Southpaw.

Miles and Service

Check the number of miles on the bike, and request information on which important services have been provided. Services include valve clearance checks, oil and filter changes, and clutch maintenance. Make sure you’re fully up to speed on any maintenance areas you’ll need to carry out as a new owner, as well.


Give the engine a few minutes to warm up to operating temperature, and then listen to it idle for a bit. The bike should have an ice, consistent idle with no hunting or surging from the motor.

For more tips on ensuring a reputable buying experience, or to view our stock of used and preowned motorcycles, speak to the pros at Southpaw Motorsports today.