Whether you ride for transportation, fun, or exercise you have probably experienced a flat tire. No matter what kind of bike you ride these simple instructions and tips will help you fix your tire and get back on the bike in a matter of minutes.
Things You Will Need
Step 1Remove the wheel from the bike by loosening the bolts or quick release levers. You may need to loosen the brakes to allow the wheel to slide free.
Tip: Turn your bike upside down by resting it on the seat and handlebars makes removing the wheel easier.
Step 2Insert a tire lever between the tire and the rim and use it to lift the edge of the tire over the rim.
Step 3Insert the second tire lever 6-12 inches from the first and use it to lift the edge of the tire off the rim completely. This can take a little force. It is easiest to leave the tire half on the rim. With one edge of the tire off you can easily replace the tube.
Step 4Remove the tube. Check the inside of the tire to make sure that the object that punctured the tube is removed. If you skip this step you may get a flat again from the same object.
Step 5If you have a spare tube skip to step 6. If you are using a patch follow the instructions on the patch kit. Or see my article on patching a bike tube here.
Step 6Insert the tube starting by placing the stem through the hole in the rim.
Tip: Inflate the tube just enough to give it a little shape, but not enough to expand the rubber. This will prevent the tube from twisting.
Step 7Once the tube is in place use your fingers to push the edge of the tire back over the rim. You may need to use a tire lever to get the last few inches over.
Step 8Use your pump to inflate the tire to the specified air pressure.
Tip: Most portable pumps don't have pressure gauges. Make sure to check for proper air pressure when you get home.
Step 9Put your wheel back on your bike, being careful to tighten the nuts or quick-release levers properly.
Warning: If you loosened your brakes be sure to tighten them before riding.
Great job on fixing your first flat. With luck on your side you may go months and months without another. Enjoy the rest of your ride.
Tips & Warnings- Check your tires regularly for cuts and wear.
- Avoid riding over glass, rocks, or other sharp objects.
- After riding through any of these hazards you can stop and brush of anything lodged in the tire before it causes a flat.