How to Choose Bike Tires

How to Choose Bike Tires



What To Look For

Bikes are typically divided into three categories: road, racing and mountain bikes. Each type of bike requires different tires. Size is another consideration, as bike tires come in 24-, 25-, 26- and 27-inch, as well as some smaller sizes for children's bikes. The width of the tire is equally important; larger widths offer more grip and a more solid ride and thinner widths are better suited for racing. The tire should fit inside your rim, without any gaps or overspill caused by the wrong fitting tire.

Common Pitfalls

When you choose bike tires, buy the right style for your bike. Tires for road bikes work well on asphalt and concrete surfaces but not on trails or grass. Mountain bikes require a tire with a knobby treads, which allows the bike to grip rough terrain. Another mistake involves buying bike tires with the wrong tread hardness. Softer treads are better for asphalt surfaces such as roads, while harder treads are better for trails and rough surfaces.

Where To Buy

Before you choose bike tires, ask for expert advice from a specialty bike store in your local neighborhood. Many of these shops let customers bring in their bike for the staff to find the right tire for the bike, based on size and price range. Another advantage to buying from a specialty bike store is that you'll find more tires than you would from an outdoor or sporting goods store. Plus, a bike shop will probably put the tires on your bike for you for free or a small fee. Shop online only if you are buying a replacement tire or know exactly what you need.


Bike tires are one of the components of a bike without a wide range in prices. Bike tires typically cost less than $100, and most manufacturers make tires for less than $75. Some companies even make bike tires for less than $25, though these are often smaller, such as the sizes associated with children's bikes. The cost is often based on the manufacturer, with well-known companies such as Veloflex selling tires for higher prices. The price of the tires is also determined by the type of bike; racing bike tires usually cost more than those for road bikes or mountain bikes.


Article Written By Jennifer Eblin

Jennifer Eblin has been a full-time freelance writer since 2006. Her work has appeared on several websites, including Tool Box Tales and Zonder. Eblin received a master's degree in historic preservation from the Savannah College of Art and Design.

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