How to Mount a Tubeless Tire

How to Mount a Tubeless Tire
Many mountain bikes today employ tubeless tires. The design relies on a rim with a unique internal shape and a tire with a butyl rubber liner molded into the casing. The design eliminates the need for an inner tube, making for a lighter tire and one that is less susceptible to so-called pinch flats, which happens when an inner-tube becomes pinched between the tire and rim, causing a puncture. Anyone who has mounted a tube-type bicycle tire before will recognize many of the steps involved in mounting a tubeless tire.


Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • 1/2 tsp. dish soap and 32 oz. water solution
  • Spray bottle (or clean rag)
  • Bicycle tire lever (as needed)
Step 1
Spray the inside of the rim with a soap and water combination. The solution should be about 1/2 tsp. of dish soap and 32 oz. of water. A spray bottle works best, but the solution can also be applied using a clean rag or towel.
Step 2
Match the tire label with the valve stem, and mount the first bead onto the rim. A tire has two beads, each one running along the bottom circumference of the tire.
Step 3
Mount the second bead into the rim. Be sure to push the bead into the center, or deepest part, of the rim.
Step 4
Push the last section of the bead into the rim. This will be the hardest portion. Use the flat end of a plastic tire lever if necessary, but careful not to damage the liner on the inside of the tire.
Step 5
Turn the wheel to check that both beads are nestled in the center of the rim.
Step 6
Pump the tire to about 20 PSI (pounds per square inch) or enough air whereby the beads form a loose seal against the rim. Add more air until the beads are firmly seated. The beads will "pop" as they press into the place, forming a seal against the rim.
Step 7
Inspect the sidewalls to ensure that the tire is seated uniformly. The tire is fully inflated when the bead-seat indicator (a raised ring that extends just above the rim wall) is equally exposed around the diameter of both sides of the tire.

Article Written By Matthew Ferguson

Matthew Ferguson is a writer living in Savannah, Ga. He has been writing for over 10 years and his work has appeared on various online publications. A collection of his short stories was published in spring 2010. He is a graduate of Appalachian State University.

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