Bicycle Tire Lifespan: Tips to Extend and Check for Wear

Posted at: Oct 6, 2020

This section summarizes the life of a typical bicycle tire, how to check for wear and tear, and how to replace a tire. Also how to store tires to extend their life.

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Bicycle tires have a life span of 3,000 to 5,000 km traveled

Bicycle tires have a life expectancy because they are the part of the tire that is grounded to the ground and creates a large resistance. Generally speaking, a bicycle tire has a life span of 3,000 to 5,000 km, which means that a bicycle tire will last for 3 to 5 years if it is used for commuting 5 km to and from work or school every day.

However, since this is a general guideline, it will change depending on the storage conditions of the bicycle and the degree of wear and tear when the bicycle is run.

How to Check Bicycle Tire Wear

The following three points are commonly used to check bicycle tires for wear and tear.

  • No holes or tears
  • Cracks in the tire
  • The degree of wear and tear of the grooves

Holes, tears, and cracks can be checked visually. For worn-out grooves, stroke the tire with the palm of your hand, and if you do not feel any grooves, it is time to replace the tire.

Signs that tires should be replaced immediately

When checking for tire wear, it is a sign that tires should be replaced immediately if any of the following are found

  • Tires have no grooves (except slick tires)
  • Tire is cracked all over
  • Tire is pitted
  • Holes in the tire.

You can drive on the road without replacing the tire, but there is a greater chance of a puncture in the middle of the road.

Otherwise, it’s okay to wait and see.

If it is not a sign that the tire should be replaced immediately, there is no problem with not replacing the tire immediately and taking a wait-and-see approach.

However, if you notice any of the following discomfort when driving, you should replace the tires.

  • They start to slip
  • They are more prone to punctures

To extend the life of your tires

Store them where they will not be exposed to rain and wind.

Bicycle tires are made of rubber, so they deteriorate in the rain and wind. It is best to store them in a covered area such as a garage or bicycle yard. If possible, it is better to cover your bicycle with a bicycle cover to protect it from the wind and rain.

Road bikes and hybrid bikes are often equipped with thinner tires, so it is best to store them indoors rather than outdoors to reduce tire damage by a wide margin.

If you will not ride the bicycle for a long period of time, let the air out and put it on a stand.

If you do not ride your bicycle for a long period of time, put it on a two-foot stand or the like so that the weight is not on the tires.

Although it is difficult to do this with city bicycles, folding bicycles can be folded and laid down, so they should be stored with the air out and the tires on their sides.

The most important thing to avoid is the “tire flattens out over time as it loses air” pattern. Avoid this pattern, as the tires will surely deteriorate.

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