How to Change a Bicycle Tire Tube

How to Change a Bicycle Tire Tube
If you ride a bicycle, sooner or later you'll experience a flat tire. But, with today's modern tires, changing a bicycle tire tube is simple and can be done as easily on the side of the road as inside your workshop.
 

Instructions

Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Removing the Old Inner Tube

Things You’ll Need:
  • New bicycle inner tube Set of tire levers
  • New bicycle inner tube
  • Set of tire levers
 
Step 1
Turn the bicycle over, so that it rests on the top of the handle bars and seat. Try to secure the bike frame so that the bike doesn't move while removing the wheel.
Step 2
Remove the wheel by loosening the quick release skewer or nut that secures the wheel to the bicycle frame.
Step 3
Unscrew the valve stem cap and press on the center of the stem to let the air out of the tire.
Step 4
Loosen and remove the retaining nut that holds the valve stem to the wheel's rim.
Step 5
Remove one side of the tire bead using a set of tire levers. Slide the end of the tire lever under the bead and pry it off the rim. Continue prying the bead off of the rim, alternating two or more tire levers.
Step 6
Pull the deflated tube out of the rim. Start anywhere on the wheel, but leave the area near the valve stem until last.

Installing the New Inner Tube

Step 1
Inspect the inside of the tire to make sure that it is free of sharp objects that could damage the new inner tube.
Step 2
Slide the valve stem through the valve stem hole in the wheel and tighten the retaining nut using your fingers.
Step 3
Feed the inner tube inside the tire as you work your way around the wheel. Be sure that the inner tube is free of kinks or folds that could damage the tube when inflating it.
Step 4
Roll the bead of the tire onto the rim of the wheel. Use tire levers for the last several inches of the tire bead.
Step 5
Inflate the inner tube approximately 50 percent using a hand pump. Roll the tire back and forth using your hands to insure that the tire bead is properly seated on the rim.
Step 6
Inflate the inner tube to the recommended pressure using a hand or floor pump. Finish tightening the valve stem nut using your fingers.
Step 7
Mount the wheel onto the bike frame by securing the axle to the frame using the quick release skewer or nut.
 

Tips & Warnings

 
Inspect the inside of the tire before installing the new tube. Have two or more sets of tire levers handy for the job.
 
Inspect the inside of the tire before installing the new tube.
 
Have two or more sets of tire levers handy for the job.
 
Avoid fully inflating the inner tube until you're sure the entire tire bead is correctly seated. Never patch an old tube unless you're on the road.
 
Avoid fully inflating the inner tube until you're sure the entire tire bead is correctly seated.
 
Never patch an old tube unless you're on the road.

Article Written By Allen Smith

Allen Smith is an award-winning freelance writer living in Vail, Colo. He writes about health, fitness and outdoor sports. Smith has a master's degree in exercise physiology and an exercise specialist certification with the American College of Sports Medicine at San Diego State University.

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