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How to repair a flat tire on a bicycle

Updated on June 22, 2011
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Anyone with a bike has experienced a flat tire at least once. In this situation, the alternatives are two: you can turn to a good repairman that will fix it for you or you can do it yourself. Knowing how to repair a tire on a bicycle should be the basic for a rider. In this guide I will explain you how to do it.


First, you should make sure that the tire on the bike is really damaged and not just deflated. If you look closely at the tire, you might be lucky and be able to see a nail or something sharp or even a cut.

If the tire is badly damaged or the hole is very close to the valve, you should replace it, otherwise, proceed to the next step for disassembling instructions.

Flip the bike upside-down on a stable position and remove the tire. Unscrew the valve nut, then, wiggle a tire lever beneath the tire edge and place it between the rim and the tire, try to put pressure so that the tire slips out of its seat, then, slide the lever along the circle. Reach inside the opening and pull the inner tube out completely. At this point, pull the other side of the tire off the rim.

Check the inside of the tire and then try to remove any remaining fragments. Take the bicycle pump and inflate the inner tube. Put the inner tube close to your ear and listen for the hiss of air coming out, then take the chalk and mark the hole. If you can‘t find the hole, place the tube in a container with water and look for the bubbles. Mark the exact spot with chalk and dry well the inner tube.

With sandpaper, smooth the affected part, then, take the glue for specific bicycle inner tubes repair, put a small amount above the hole and place the patch over it. Apply pressure for a couple of minutes and let the glue dry. At this point you can finally inflate the air chamber to check if the hole is patched correctly.

Deflate the inner tube and place it back in the tire by following the previous steps in reverse.

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    • alocsin profile image

      alocsin 

      7 years ago from Orange County, CA

      Excellent advice for us cyclists. Voting this Up and Useful.

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