Flat Tire, Tips for preventing punctures

You're just on the go and then it happens, flat tire. Not only annoying for yourself but it also stops your fellow cyclists. With the right choice of materials and good adjustments you can prevent a lot of trouble.

Good preparation prevents a lot of trouble on a ride

Replace your tire on time

It sounds obvious, replace your tire before it is completely worn out. With mountain bike tires you can check whether the tire is worn. If the profile look irregular and frayed, it is time to replace your tire for a new one. Choose your new tire with care, some provide a lot of grip but can also puncture more easily.

Check your tire regularly

It is recommended to check your tires regularly, preferably after every ride. Check if there are sharp objects, stones or thorns in the tire. If they are not too deep you can pick them out of the tire to prevent them from going deeper into the tire and still causing a puncture. Our mechanics that travel along our bike tours check your bike every evening and therefore also the tires.

Check your rim

You happen to have a lot of tire punctures lately? While your tire is still in good condition? Then take a look at the inside of your rim. Your rim may be damaged, sharp edges can cause a lot of trouble. The rim tape can also be damaged or shifted. Carefully move your hand on the inside of the rim and see if you feel any unevenness there.

Patch or replace inner tube

If you get a puncture while riding tour bicycle then a patch is a quick solution and continue your ride. Nevertheless, it is advisable to replace a glued inner tube as soon as possible. During mountain biking over rough terrain, the tires are subjected to enormous forces. During our mountain bike tours there are always spare tires available, but you might want to bring your own favorite tire.

Recommended tire pressure for mountain bikesThe right tire pressure not only ensures that you ride more comfortably, it also prevents punctures. A hard tire can be very uncomfortable and reduces grip. A soft tire is less stable and increases the risk of punctures.

There are several factors that determine the correct tire pressure:

Weight of the cyclist, a person of 75kg needs less air in the tires than a 100kg person.

Size of the tire, a wide 29inch tire feels more soft with 2 bar than a narrower 26inch tire.

The surface of your track is determinant for the right tire pressure, soft sandy soil requires a lower pressure than a stony or paved surface.

Level of experience, a novice cyclist is advised to inflate the tires a bit to prevent drifting in the corners.

The ideal tire pressure is somewhere between 2 and 2.5 bar. Under 2 bar the risk of punctures increases a lot, if you, for example hit a stone or a tree stump the tire can push to your rim and leaves two small holes in the tire: the so-called. 'Snakebite'

Switch to tubeless tireTubeless tires not only provide more comfort and grip, but also dramatically reduce the risk of punctures. Which rim is suitable for tubeless tires? This is indicated by the 'tubeless ready', sign, but even rims and tires that do not have this sign are often suitable. Check with your local mountain bike specialist.

So how does it work? The tubeless tires are filled with a liquid that seals the edges to prevent air loss. If you get a small puncture it will be filled with liquid and the hole will close.

Do you want to know more about our Mountain bike tours in the beautiful landscape of Africa, Kenya? Check out the planned trips.

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