How to Push start your Bike?
Push starting, bump starting, or pop starting a car or motorcycle is a tried-and-true method of getting the engine running when the battery is dead or when the starter isn’t working. You don’t need jumper cables or any special tools, and in a motorcycle, you can easily do it on your own. No need to call a friend or recruit a helpful stranger. All you need is enough strength to push your bike (hence the name), or if you’re lucky, a hill you can roll the bike down on.
1. Find a Clear Stretch of Road
- You need enough room for your motorcycle to gain some momentum. An empty street allows you to push start safely since you’re less likely to run into someone or be run over.
2. Put Your Motorcycle Into 2nd Gear
- Second gear is the easiest and safest for most bikes, and what I usually use.
- Starting in neutral is another option and makes the next step easier.
The transmission needs to be in a low gear to make it easier to turn the motor over. Although first gear can also be used, it can be too aggressive on some bikes, causing it to lurch forward and throw you off.
3. Pull the Clutch In and Start Pushing Your Bike
The bike needs to be going at least 5 mph (8 km/h)—ideally 8-10 mph (13-16 km/h)—for the motor to turn over.
This can be done a few different ways:
- Waddle or walk your bike forward. This is easier if your bike is light or you have long legs.
- Push while running alongside your bike. Just remember that you need to jump onto your bike once you get to speed.
- Have someone push you. This makes it easier for you to get up to the required speed.
- Roll down a hill or slope. Let gravity do its thing.
4. Release the Clutch Quickly and Give It Some Gas
- If you started in neutral, shift up into second gear once you get enough speed.
- Pop the clutch while gently rolling on the throttle to about a 1/2-turn. You’re listening for sort of purr from the engine followed by high engine revs.
This step is straightforward for smaller bikes, but for bikes with larger displacements or high compression, the engine might sputter, or the rear wheel might slip.
If things aren’t going smoothly, stay calm, pull the clutch back in and try again.
Once the motor starts, you can ride as you normally would; just make sure not to stall. Keep the engine revs high. This also helps recharge your battery—if it will hold a charge
How Does Push Starting Work?
Simply put, push starting bypasses the starter system and supplies the needed compression to ignite the air/fuel mixture in the engine.