How to Reduce the Risk of Punctures
Solve your Repeated Puncture Issues
Punctures are the bane of every cyclist and are caused in one of three ways: Sharp objects piercing the tyre and tube from the outside, the wheel rim piercing the tube from the inside, or impact punctures resulting in the tube being pinched between the tyre and wheel.
If you feel you are getting more punctures than you should be, this post will explain how to reduce the amount of punctures you are receiving.
Check your Wheel Rims
Inspect the wheel without the tyre and inner tube and look at the rim tape. It should be bump free and be flat to the wheel rim. Often, the spoke holes are causing the problem so ensure your rim tape covers them. If you feel it is not or is a little thin, then buy some new tape. You can purchase heavy duty tape if you feel you are getting a lot of punctures from your wheel rim.
Never use electrical tape as it deforms under pressure and doesn’t work.
Lastly, look at the valve hole and file off any protruding sharp edges.
Check your Tyres
Check your tyres by running a gloved hand around the inside of the tyre looking for sharp objects which may be embedded. Always ensure your hand is gloved so you don’t pick-up a nasty cut. Remove the sharp objects.
A tyres puncture resistance comes from the integrity of the fabric inside the tyre. This should be checked for wear and tear. If you see some lumps and bumps inside the tyre, this is a sign it should be replaced.
Check the outside of tyre for sharp objects which you may have picked up on previous rides and remove them. These can be slowly piercing the tyre and by getting rid of them now will save half an hour fixing a puncture on your next ride. A good idea is to check your tyres after every ride.
Ensure you inflate your Tyres Regularly
Maintaining tyre pressure not only means your bike is running at the optimal level and as such improving your performance, it also reduces the risk of impact punctures. Roughly, although there is debate in cycling circles, if you weigh up to 70KG, you should inflate the tyre to around 90-100 PSI. If you weigh above 80KG, you should be looking at around 110 PSI.
Wider Tyres = Less Punctures
If you can fit a 28mm tyre you reduce the risk of impact punctures. Although some cyclists argue against this due to extra weight, evidence is mounting that the wider tyre rolls better, and as such they actually make you faster.
Watch where you Ride
Roads can have plenty of problems for a cyclist. Potholes, manholes, and broken glass in the side of the road can all contribute to one kind of puncture or another. So try and avoid obvious problems. If you do ride through broken glass, it is a good idea to stop and quickly check your tyre and brush off any glass.
Hopefully, you should now be in a better position to avoid punctures. You can read all of our cycling maintenance blogs by clicking here.
Source: The Cycling Bug