Dirt bikes are motorcycles that are lightweight that are designed to run off-road and on unpaved paths. It is illegal in some areas of Florida to ride on a dirt bike.
They can run legally on roads and in streets in Florida only if they are appropriately equipped along with registration and title. Of course, the dirt bike rider must have a driving license too.
If you have a brand new dirt bike and wondering, “where can I ride my dirt bike legally.” Whether your dirt bike is well equipped or not, you have come to the right place. We will discuss all the legal requirements that you must have know before you hit the local streets.
Are Dirt Bikes Street Legal In Florida – Street Legal Dirt Bikes In Florida
The most significant disadvantage of a dirt bike in the United States is that you cannot ride it on roads for your everyday use. However, if you modify your dirt bike, it will become a street-legal dirt bike. These include adding a turn signal, mirrors, headlights, taillights horn, and a speedometer. These requirements change from state to state in the US.
The state of Florida is located in the southeastern region of the United States. It is a beautiful place with amusement parks, orange crops, the Kennedy Space Centre, winter vegetables, Lake Okeechobee, and turquoise and emerald-colored coastal waters. In addition, Florida has over 15 dirt bike trails.
How Can You Make Your Dirt Bike Street Legal In Florida?
There are lots of street-legal dirt bikes available in the market for reasonable prices. If you are interested, then buying is an option.
However, if you already own an off-road dirt bike and being too close to it, you want to make it street legal. Do some changes and modifications to your dirt bike following Florida dirt bike laws to make it street legal.
To make dirt bike street legal in Florida, you have to make a few modifications to the following components of your bikes:
- Brake lights
- Turn signals
Let’s discuss the modifications as mentioned above in detail.
Florida dirt bike laws need you to install a DOT (Department of Transport)-compliant headlight. These headlights enable you to ride at ease and safely in the dark.
The headlight must have low and high beam switchable option which can be used both during the day and at night. In addition, it must have an indicating light to inform you about which one of the two beams is on.
DOT Florida insists on having a tail light at the rear part of your bike. Drivers on the road must see a moving vehicle or bike in the dark. Therefore, it is of utmost importance to let other drivers know where you are and when you intend to take a turn.
3. Brake Lights:
The DOT insists that the rear light should not only be a taillight but a brake light as well. It is because other drivers must see you applying brakes so that they can be careful too and make decisions just in time.
4. Turn Signals/Indicators:
Though turn signals or indicators are not compulsory in Florida, they are still highly recommended for safety purposes. Traditional hand-signaling is sufficient in the daylight, but it will not help, especially after dark or fog. The drivers following you cannot see your hands in the dark. So it is strongly recommended to have indicators in your dirt bike.
Also, hand-signaling requires you to free one arm and signal in the air while controlling your bike with another hand simultaneously. Handling your bike with one hand is dangerous for your safety.
If you want to convert your dirt bike street legal in Florida, mirrors are the mediatory components. Though all US states require mirrors, the number of mirrors required varies from state to state. Therefore, it might be sufficient to have one mirror only in some states, while other states will need you to have two.
Florida dirt bike law requires you to have only one mirror. But for your safety and as a precaution, you should install two. The better and broader view you have of what is happening behind you, the easier your ride and the safer you will stay.
Use high-quality mirrors available in the market. Imperfect quality mirrors will give you low visibility and view and wear out in no time or break out due to high-speed wind on the road.
Horns are a must in all states. So Florida DOT makes it compulsory for street legal dirt bikes to have a horn. The traditional squeeze hooters are not sufficient. In some states, these hooters are acceptable, while in others, it must be a fully electric one. To be on the safe side, install a fully electric horn.
Installing a horn is an inexpensive job. Horns are easy to find and easy to install.
A speedometer gives you an idea of how fast you are moving. You will be stopped for overspeeding if you cannot keep track of your speed without a speedometer.
As dirt bikes are designed for off-road riding, their tires are different from those on the road. Their tires’ rubber is not strong enough to have a good grip on the highway and handle highway speeds.
Use tires for your dirt bike which meet the strict DOT standard to make your dirt bike street legal in Florida. The type or brand, in this case, does not matter as long as DOT approves them. You can easily see the seal of DOT on the tire’s sidewall.
Florida Dirt Bike Laws
Other than components, you are required to fulfill the following condition to make your dirt bike street legal:
- Motorcycle Endorsement – This can also be called a Motorcycle License. Being a car driving license holder does not mean that you will automatically ride a bike. Before obtaining a motorcycle endorsement, you need to have a valid driver’s license or learner’s permit. After having these, you need to take a rider safety training session called MSF Basic Rider Course. After completing the training course, you will visit a DMV office where your driver’s license will be authorized. Your Florida driver’s license will have the words’ Motorcycle Also’ or ‘Motorcycle Only’ added.
- Helmets And Eye Protection – It is mandatory only for riders below 21 to wear a helmet in Florida. In 2000, Florida repealed the universal motorcycle helmet act, which required all motorcycle riders to wear a helmet.
Riders of age 21 or above are legally permitted not to wear helmets on one condition only if they are covered by an insurance policy worth at least $10,000 in medical benefits. These benefits must include payments for injuries sustained due to a motorcycle accident.
Though a helmet is optional but wearing eye protection is mandatory in the state of Florida. This law is to protect riders from any foreign object entering into their eyes while riding.
- Age Restrictions – Anyone over the age of 16 years is allowed by Florida to ride a motorcycle. The rider must have a valid class E driver’s license to operate a motorcycle.
Riders under the age of 21 must have a unique plate tag that identifies them as such. It requires a plain white plate with the words ‘Under 21’ in bold, bright red letters.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do Bikers need a license to ride The Motorcycle in Florida?
Suppose you already have a valid Florida Driver’s license to ride a motorcycle. In that case, you only need a motorcycle endorsement, commonly known as a motorcycle license. Then, get your license by completing Florida Rider Program.
If you want a motorcycle license, you have to be at least 16 years old learner’s permit holder for an entire year without conviction. However, if you are above 18 years, you do not a learner’s permit. In addition, you have to pass the standard E class license test and complete a Basic Rider Course.
How much does The motorcycle license cost in Florida?
You have to pay the following fee charges:
- Endorsed license: $7.00 endorsement fee; additional $6.25 fee at tax collector offices
- Motorcycle-only license: $48 new license fee; additional $6.25 fee at tax collector offices
In How much time can I get a motorcycle license in Florida?
The rider course needs 15 hours of training course in total. First, take the required rider course, which will take about 2 to 7 days to complete. You will get your license on the day of your course completion.
What is the penalty of driving without a motorcycle license in Florida?
If you get caught riding a motorcycle without a valid license, then you can be charged with a fine of up to $500. Besides it, as many as 60 days in jail, according to Lt. Chuck Williams of the Florida Highway Patrol.
What if I am not wearing a helmet and meet a motorcycle accident in Florida?
Florida laws do not require a motorcycle rider to wear a helmet. But not wearing a helmet and meeting an accident can reduce the value of your claim. So always be safe and always wear a helmet. However, suppose another motorist causes your injuries. In that case, law firms will help you pursue total compensation in medical bills and other expenses.
Dirt bikes are not street legal in Florida, but you need to get a certificate to ride them legally in this state. The government is concerned about the environment of the state. Therefore you would have to make a few changes in the engine, and then you can apply for the registration.
Once you have got the certificate, ride your dirt bike without any restriction in Florida!