If riding your dirt bike on rough terrain and at tracks just doesn’t fulfill your insatiable need to ride on your favorite dirt bike, you probably have thought about what it takes to make your dirt bike street legal. Unfortunately, every state has different laws about dirt bike street legality. It can be a little tricky to figure out what you need to do to ride your dirt bike on public roads. But have no fear, I’m here to tell you everything you need to know about making your favorite dirt bike 100% street legal in the state of Texas.
In order to become legal, dirt bikes require: headlights; a headlight indicator light; DOT approved and battery-powered tail lights/brake lights; rearview mirrors; a horn; DOT approved tires; and a DOT approved fuel tank. The state has a process involving an OHV decal, inspection, and registration.
Keep reading to find out exactly what the Texas Law requires and how to comply with it when making your dirt bike street legal.
Dirt Bike Street Legality in Texas
Texas is like most states when it comes to making your dirt bike street legal in that there are both mechanical additions to make and non-mechanical steps to take in order to get your dirt bike onto main, public roads.
With the mechanical additions that you will need to make to meet the street legality regulations in Texas, you’re basically making your dirt bike look less like a dirt bike and more like a street bike. You need to add headlights, tail lights, brake lights, rear view mirrors, a horn, approved tires, and an approved fuel tank.
Check out this video on YouTube of a dirt biker in Texas who made his bike totally street legal:
Non-mechanical steps you’ll have to take include buying and displaying an OHV decal, getting your dirt bike inspected, and obtaining registration.
The Mechanical Additions to Make
Buying the Parts
Knowing what you need to make your dirt bike street legal is one thing, but actually making it street legal is a whole different and even more complicated process. But don’t worry! I can tell you exactly where to go to get every single part you need to ride your dirt bike on main, public roads and be totally legal.
The easiest thing to do when you’re looking to buy the necessary parts for dirt bike street legality in Texas is to get a Tusk Kit. The best thing about Tusk Kits is that most of them don’t require you to cut the original wiring on your dirt bike, which eliminates time, stress, and even the need for knowledge of your electrical system.
Most Tusk Kits include tail lights, brake lights, a horn, and a rear view mirror that you can add to your dirt bike to make it street legal. With just one purchase, you can meet 4 out of 7 of the required additions to make your dirt bike street legal! It doesn’t get better than that!
The best place to buy a Tusk Kit is Amazon.com because they have lots of options listed. When you shop on Amazon.com for your Tusk Kit, make sure you type in what make and model your dirt bike is so that you find the exact fit for your specific dirt bike. On Amazon.com, Tusk Kits range between $150-$200.
You can also easily buy headlights for your street legal dirt bike on Amazon.com. If you can’t find what you’re looking for on Amazon.com, you should also check MotoSport.com and RevZilla.com. Both of these websites have lots of options and good prices. Headlights can be as cheap at $20 or as pricey as $200. Buy what’s right for you!
For your DOT approved dirt bike tires and fuel tank, you should start at MotoSport.com because their product descriptions ALWAYS say if they are DOT approved or not. If you can’t find what you’re looking for there, go to Amazon.com next. Wherever you shop though, it is crucial that the tires and fuel tank you buy are DOT approved. If they aren’t, you will not pass inspection.
Other Helpful Additions
Now that you know everything that is mechanically required of you by law to make your dirt bike street legal, you should know a little bit about what other helpful additions might make your dirt bike safer and easier to use on main, public roads.
Because turn signals are not required by law to make your dirt bike street legal in Texas, a lot of people opt to just use hand signals to indicate turns and lane changes. While that’s totally appropriate (and again, legal), it’s not always the most effective choice when you’re on main, public roads. Sometimes, other drivers won’t see you or know what you’re indicating, leading to a devastating traffic accident. A really helpful addition to make to your dirt bike when making it street legal is turn signals. While turn signals aren’t required to make your dirt bike street legal in Texas, they could really help you stay safe.
Another suggestion I have to make when it comes to non-essential additions to a street legal dirt bike is a speedometer. Again, it’s 100% legal to NOT have a speedometer on your street legal dirt bike, but I definitely recommend it if you’re riding your dirt bike on main, public roads on a regular basis. My reasoning for this is that even though you don’t need it for street legality, you need it to avoid speeding tickets! Police officers will ticket you for speeding no matter what you’re driving, so just be aware of that!
The Non-Mechanical Steps to Take
Get an OHV Decal
It is now required by law that if you are riding a dirt bike on main, public roads, you have to have an OHV decal. You also need an OHV decal if you’re riding your dirt bike on lands that have been purchased with Texas Parks & Wildlife Department OHV grants.
You can get your OHV decal for $16 at the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department’s Customer Service Center, OHV dealerships, and at some of the OHV venues where the decal is required to ride. Check out this page as well to find out everything you need to know about buying your OHV Decal.
Get your Dirt Bike Inspected and Approved
When you’re done putting all the necessary additions onto your street legal dirt bike, take it to a motorcycle shop to get it inspected. If you pass the inspection, they’ll give you a certificate that you’ll take with you to get your dirt bike registered.
Register your Dirt Bike
A super important step to take when you’re making your dirt bike street legal is to make sure you have the proper registration.
You can register your dirt bike at the DMV. When you go to do this, make sure you bring your certificate that proves you passed the inspection,
proof of insurance on the dirt bike, the title, and your license.
There will be a fee when you register your dirt bike for street legality, so make sure you’re prepared for that. It can be anywhere between $200 and $300.
Once your dirt bike is registered, you can get plates for it. Don’t forget to mount those on your dirt bike before riding on main roads! Check out this post to read about the best places to mount your plates on your dirt bike.
I know it’s a little overwhelming (and expensive) to see how much needs to be done before your dirt bike can become street legal in Texas, but I promise that it is so worth it!