Moped Wheel Bearings
Bearings are used in many different parts of the moped including the engine and chassis and require regular attention. Unlike engine bearings, chasis bearings don’t have a ready supply of fresh lubricant and owners should therefore pay particular attention to these when maintaining your moped.
The chassis of a moped has four sets of bearings held within it and include wheel, swingarms, suspension linkages and bushes and finally headstock bearings. Checking these is fairly straight forward and badly degraded bearings will have a big impact on your scooters steering and performance. We have covered the basics of suspensions on our suspension page so here we won’t focus much on suspension bearings. So where to start.
You can begin your routine checks by looking at your wheel bearings. To do this you will want to raise your front wheel off the ground and be able to move it back and forward freely. Once you have elevated your wheel you will want to straighten out your steering column. To elevate your front wheel you could put your scooter on its stand and ask a friend to lean on the back of the bike.
The next step is to grab the wheel from one side and pull the top towards you while pushing the lower end away. When your doing this listen out for any clicking or clunking sounds. If you hear this then they more than likely need replacing. To replace these you will need to remove the wheel itself. It is advisable to use a trained mechanic for this. To check the bearings in the rear tyre or drive shaft you should follow a similar procedure.
The easiest way to identify problems with your transmission bearings is by listening out for suspicious noises and rough power delivery from the transmission. You will usually get the feel for this when out riding and the ranging setups of mopeds mean that you will need to consult your owners manual on this one.
Checking your mopeds swingarm bushes is in many ways similar to checking your wheel bearings and requires you to put your scooter on its stand and swing the swingarm from side to side. You usually get a feeling from this as to whether it feels right or not and if it doesn’t then some maintenance will be required.
You can check your steering bearings in one of two ways. The first is to put your moped on its stand and move the handle bars from right to left. While doing this you should try to feel for any light spots or notchiness as this action should be completely smooth. If it is not smooth then you will want to replace the bearings.
The next method is to get someone to push and pull quite hard on the front suspension. When they do this you will need to put your fingers behind the top of the steering stem where the handlebars attach. While doing this feel for any movement. If there is movement then the bearings will need adjusting. This is not easy but your moped will benefit from regular re-greasing.
Bearings should be part of your routine maintenance checks because they can greatly alter your mopeds performance. For further information consult your owner manual.