possibly you saw them at a huge discount and just had to buy them. Or possibly you stock up on your front-runner model like you ’ rhenium buying gutter paper at Costco. Whatever the reason, you may start to wonder :
Can bike tires actually “ go bad ? ” Bike tires can expire, even if they’ve never been used! If exposed to elements such as excessive heat, light, or moisture, tires can rot, crack, and break down. However, if stored properly, new bike tires can last many years, and will be ready to go when your old tires need to be replaced. New tires can be expensive, but they ’ re besides the only contact point between your bicycle and the prime ! so, if you want to check your tires ( to see if they ’ re regretful ) or if you just want to get your tires to stopping point long, then you ’ re in the justly place.
In this article, I’ll cover:
Three Common Reasons Bike Tires Go Bad
1. Exposure to Excessive Heat and Light
excessive heat and light are rough on a batch of materials. Rubber is no exception. Leave your tires in a hot garage or out in the yard with full sun exposure for an extended period of time, and they’ll begin to dry out and lose their “rubberiness.” Kind of like an old condom band that breaks rather of stretches, tires become very brittle when they dry out.
good fortune mounting that tire on a flange before it snaps into pieces. Better immediately than when you ’ re out on a ride though !
2. Exposure to Excessive Moisture
You don ’ thyroxine want your tires to get besides dry…but you besides don ’ thyroxine want them to get excessively wet. excessive moisture buildup will have the reverse consequence on tires, but it ’ s no less damage.
If your tires are exposed to moisture, they’ll get moldy and begin to rot. A moldy, waterlogged tire is a perfective breed ground for bacteria and insects – mosquitoes love old tires – sol decidedly reconsider before storing your tires outside !
3. Lack of Ventilation
Airflow is essential for wicking away overindulgence heat and moisture. Think about it : why do athletic invest companies focus so much on breathability ? If your clothe makes you feel hot, sweaty and crying while exercising, are you going to perform at your best ?
credibly not. Similarly, if you store your bike tires in a poorly ventilated area, the effects of exposure to heat, light and moisture will be compounded. This will cause the rubber to degrade faster, thereby reducing its performance to a greater degree.
How to Know if Your Bike Tires are Bad
therefore possibly you ’ ve been storing your bicycle tires in less than ideal conditions, but how do you know if your tires are placid salvageable…or if it ’ s besides late to save them ?
Let ’ s make a ocular inspection and see what condition they ’ rhenium in. foremost, pick up the tire and take a look at the overall supreme headquarters allied powers europe. If it’s warped, bent, or basically any shape other than round, this isn’t a good start.
Next we ’ ll go in for a closer count. Search for any cracks in the rubber – a polarity that the tire is drying out. The tire may also show discoloration or have hard spots. These are besides signs that exposure to extreme heat and ignite is taking its bell and causing the rubber eraser to break down. besides count for any determine or mold. drawn-out storehouse in damp conditions can cause a run down to rot. Don’t forget to check the inside of the tire as well: this is where water can collect and cause the most damage! If your tires have passed these checks so far, it ’ sulfur time to seat the tire on a rim and inflate it. tied if a tire doesn ’ t express visible signs of wear, it may not inflate by rights or bulge out in certain places when inflated. The former could indicate leaks, while the latter could mean that the rubber is thinning or wearing out in certain places. If your tire fails any of these checks, then riding on them could be dangerous, or at the very least provide atrocious ride quality !
now, how can you prevent these problems from happening to your tires ?
Three Tips for Properly Storing Bike Tires (To Help Them Last Longer)
1. Store Tires in a Cool, Dry, Well-Ventilated Area
To fight off the price caused by temperature extremes and moisture, make certain to keep your tires inside and away from coarse elements. A climate-controlled area is best, but this can include your garage as long as it doesn’t get too hot or too cold out there. Minimize light damage by keeping your tires in a spot away from direct sunlight. This area should also be well-ventilated. Your tires need to breathe besides, as stagnant air out can lead to bacteria emergence – particularly if your tires are exposed to moisture or compression.
2. Keep Tires Covered
Covering or wrapping your tires with blankets or sheets can help prevent exposure to moisture and light as well. Plastic bags are very well, but they don ’ metric ton emit identical well ; and if they ’ re clear, they aren ’ triiodothyronine very good at preventing light transmission either ! Placing tires in a cardboard box is fine ampere well, ampere long as you take notice of the adjacent memory tip :
3. Store Tires Upright or Flat
Wherever you decide to store your tires, make sure you leave them upright or, if you store them in a box, ensure they can lay flat and are not being bent or squished by heavier objects.
Have you ever been on a retentive road travel or plane drive and fallen asleep in a truly awkward situation, merely to have your body feel like it ’ sulfur stick in that position ? now imagine your tires sitting for months or years in a similarly awkward put. They ’ re probably going to lose their roundness and look pretty askew when it ’ second time to put them on your motorcycle. If it ’ sulfur been a in truth long prison term, the arctic could become permanently creased, which could cause serious morphologic damage. Tires in this condition could be at greater risk of puncturing, getting a pinch flat or providing inconsistent grip and steering.
These three tips also apply to your tire tubes! If you ride with tubes and have a handful of extras stored in your garage, make sure you follow the above tips to keep them newly and cook to go when needed !
How Long Do Bicycle Tires Last in Storage?
Bike tires that are stored properly should last for about 3-6 years, according to Specialized. However, the exact lifespan will vary depending on the brand and condition of the tires, as well as their exposure to heat, moisture, etc. Under terrible conditions, bike tires could break down in a matter of months. I feel pretty lucky to have found a specific number from Specialized. If you have a search at this article, you ’ ll see that tire companies typically don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate like to give an exact number – credibly due to liability reasons.
But Specialized was identical specific. here ’ s the quotation so you can see precisely what they said : “Tires and tubes should be stored in a dark, cool, ventilated area. Heat, UV light, Ozone, and time degrade the rubber compound. The tires keep their performance level for about three years. Then the aging agents and softeners have dissipated enough to let you feel the difference in grip and suppleness. However, it is safe to use tires up to six years after manufacturing.” How they arrived at three years they don ’ t say – with science, I ’ megabyte think ! – but it ’ south always nice to get a solid answer out of a well known caller like Specialized.
One further note: high-performance tires typically use a soft, grippier condom compound. While this significantly improves traction on the trails or road, it does mean they will tend to break down faster – both during use and in repositing .
Are Old Bicycle Tires Safe to Use?
Old bike tires can be safe to use if they’ve been stored properly and aren’t showing signs of damage, such as cracks, warping, discoloration, etc. With that said, the rubber in tires does tend to break down over time, so if you’re not sure that your tires are safe, it’s probably better to buy a new set.
Read more : 7 Bike Fit Tips for Older Riders
It ’ s besides worth mentioning that “ erstwhile ” is a relative term. And, believe it or not, time itself can cause tires to break down. technology changes over the years angstrom well. Newer tires may use stronger, more durable condom compounds that provide better performance and handling. so, if you ’ re in doubt about how well those old tires might perform, it doesn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate suffering to buy some new ones – specially since it can only make your riding feel dependable and more enjoyable overall !