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ON AVOIDING PUNCTURES

- There's nothing like a puncture to ruin your day. Let's talk about what you can do about it!

This is not a scientific article, but 100% based on our own professional experiences. An experience that is based on the members we have and the bikes they buy.

THE MYTH OF PUNCTURE-FREE TIRES

 

As a starting point, all tires contain air and can puncture. We therefore prefer to talk about the degree of puncture resistance. Everything else is an outright lie, with a single and rare exception:

It should be mentioned that there are tires without air in them. Solid tyres, which in our experience are uncomfortable to ride. They are also expensive, and very expensive to install as it takes a very long time. They also cannot fit on all rims and typically cause more problems than benefit. So therefore we do not offer this and will not discuss it further in this article. However, we have members in Cykelven who are happy with such tyres.

So with that in mind, we'd like to debunk the myth of puncture-free tires. There are tires with very high puncture resistance - read about them here in our article on tire selection.

 

PUNCTURES AND TIRE PRESSURES

 

Pump often! At least once a month - preferably every 2-3 weeks. In principle, it's a balloon that sits inside the tire and holds the air - and you probably remember the disappointment from childhood when the balloons from the birthday party dwindled after just a few days.

 

It's exactly the same with the inner tubes in tires, but they are stronger than balloons and should hold the air longer. Put a pump on the tires every two weeks and check that the pressure is sufficient - this increases your own comfort, power, the durability of the tire and reduces the risk of punctures. 

Therefore, get yourself a foot pump. This makes the process much faster and most foot pumps have a pressure gauge so you can read the pressure. It is not entirely easy to feel with the fingers.

 

Your tire has writing on them on what the manufacturer recommends in terms of tire pressure. Typically indicated in both bar and PSI and most pumps with a pressure gauge will also display both methods of reading pressure. 

Narrow tires typically need a very high pressure, and wider tires a lower pressure. It also depends a lot on what you want and your personal weight, the weight of the bike and freight of stuff. The more weight, the higher pressure we recommend. 

And yes, but can theoretically burst his tube by pumping too hard. However, you have to make a lot of effort, i.e. it is quite difficult. If this happens, it is most likely because the tube is tender or there is a stone in the tire. 

High pressure (5-8 bar)

- Worse road grip

- Less comfort compared to the surface. You will notice bumps and holes in the road more clearly. 

+ Less risk of puncture

+ Less wear on the sides of the tyre, i.e. lasts longer

+ Less rolling resistance, i.e. you can drive faster with the same effort

Low pressure (0-5 bar)

+ Better grip

+ Better comfort compared to the surface

- Higher risk of puncture

- Your tires will get cracks in the side and be destroyed before they wear out from driving)

- Increased rolling resistance so you have to use more kilojoules for the same distance. Whether that's a good or bad thing is debatable...

(continued)

Typically, it is wise to have a relatively high tire pressure. However, there comes a point where you actually lose momentum by having too high tire pressure. The road grip can become too low and actually prevent good progress.

 

Find a balance that suits you and again this is very useful with a pump that has a pressure gauge. 

Tip: If you ride with high tire pressure and run into a blizzard, you will probably skate around. Take a lot of air out and you will feel how your road grip will be much better. The risk of puncture is also increased, but it can be useful in a tight spot. 

WORN TIRES - CHANGE ON TIME AND CHOOSE RIGHT

Tires are largely made of rubber compounds and degrade over time and due to UV light. Most often it is either due to driving and thus generally worn, or due to driving with too low tire pressure for too long which causes the sides of the tire to crack.

If punctures are a big problem for you, keep an eye on the condition of your tyres. Often it can be seen with the naked eye. 

​There is a big difference in the durability, puncture resistance and general properties of different tires, so please read our article on choosing tires

Here are a few examples of wear and tear due to driving and damaged sides due to low tire pressure.

Cracks in the side due to driving with low tire pressure:

islanded side wall.jpg

New tire compared to a very worn tire of the same type:

worn tire.jpg
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