We want to share a few tire tips and safety recommendations that we've gathered from our riding experience. If you have a good tip to share, email us and we'll add it to the list!
Proper mounting of tires and tubes is critical for safety. If you have never changed your bike tires and tubes before or do not feel fully capable of doing so, you should ask a bike mechanic for assistance. If you just need a little how-to reminder, check out our article on Tire and Tube Replacement.
- On your first ride with brand new tires, take it easy around corners. New tires (we've noticed this particular with Michelin tires!) often have some mold-prevention compound on them from the manufacturing process, making them slicker than they will be once they're broken in a little bit.
- Clincher tires (all of the tires we sell that aren't tubulars) require hooked rims. "Hooked" refers to the ridge on the inside of the rim that holds the Kevlar or wire bead of the tire in place. Most contemporary rims are hooked. If you have doubts, refer to your rim's specifications.
- When you return from a ride, wipe down your tires with a rag and inspect them for embedded glass and debris. Objects embedded in the tire will gradually work their way in and penetrate the casing, potentially causing flats on future rides. Some riders also like to let some air out of their tires after every ride and then re-inflate them before the next one; this practice may increase wear time on tubes and helps prevent potential pressure-related blowouts if you're keeping your bike in a hot place.
- It's not safe to rotate tires by swapping the front and rear. We suggest discarding a used rear tire, moving the used front tire to the rear, and putting a new tire on the front. The front wheel is responsible for most of your traction when cornering, while the rear supports most of your body weight and facilitates the power transfer caused by pedaling. Rear tires wear faster and front tires need good treads to provide traction.
- Dust your tires with baby powder before installing them to help them seat more easily.
- If you're having difficulty mounting a new tire, try using a little hand dish detergent on the tire bead to make it a little more slippery and easier to slide over the rim.
- Tires with black treads will generally last longer than any other color due to their higher carbon content.
- If a road hazard damages your sidewall while on a ride, a folded dollar bill or Clif Bar wrapper can be inserted between the tube and the tire as a makeshift tire boot.
As always, if you have any questions or comments, get in touch with us at 1-800-682-0570 or firstname.lastname@example.org!