By having the right bicycle tires and tubes you can be able to get down to having a lot of fun when it comes to riding your bicycle regardless of your preferred cycling style. The wheels are your contact with the ground.
They provide the right amount of power transfer from you and your bike to the ground giving you the correct amount of traction, speed and control you require for the smoothest bike riding experience.
Since they are one of the most active parts of your bike, tires should be changed every time you decide to change the riding style for the best riding experience. Whether you opt for road racing and commuting or rugged Mountain biking, you will need different sets of tires for each of these activities.
The right tire will give you a combination of:
- The correct level of traction
- Lowest rolling resistance
- A great cycling experience which is always a joy
Choosing the Correct Bicycle Tires and Tubes
If you own a bicycle and wish to purchase a new set of tires or inner tubes, you can check your older tires for the size to buy. If you are not sure, just take you bike to the bicycle shop and get the technicians there to help you with the decision. The chart below lists the sizes for different bicycles.
|Tire Type||Size (diameter x width)|
|Beach cruiser||26” x 1.125cm|
|Downhill Mountain bike||26” x 2.3cm|
|Commuter||26” x 1.5cm|
|Road Bike||700mm x 23 mm|
|Cross country Mountain bike||26” x 2.25cm|
You can find more information of bicycle tire sizing here.
Did you know…?
Did you know that tubular tires are getting easier to use?
Since todays tubular tires use double sided tape to attach to the bicycle rim. Changing them is not as difficult as it was in the past with all that is needed being peeling the tube off the rim and subsequently attaching a new tube pumping it up and you are good to go.
Do you need Clincher or Tubular Tires?
There are two main types of bicycle tires, clincher or tubular. Tires are designed with the tube sewn into the tire. The tire is then installed on the rim by being glued to it. Clincher tires are the main type used on most bicycles today. These tires usually have a Kevlar or steel bead which attaches to the inside of the rim with the balloon-like bicycle inner tube inserted under the tire. Look at the table below to learn some of the benefits and drawbacks of tubular tires.
|Reduced possibility of a pinch flat||Where installation is not perfect they can come off and lead to accidents.|
|Faster due to lower rolling resistance||Carrying a spare is inconvenient as they are heavier.|
|Provide a comfortable ride||Are expensive|
|Accommodate varying tire pressure levels while maintaining performance||Almost impossible to change flats on the road.|
As a personal rule, I always stick with clincher tires as even though they are heavier than tubular tires, they are easier to sue and replace as compared to the more expensive alternative of tubular tires.
Tube or Tubeless Tires?
Just to show you how serious the tubeless vs. tube tires debate has become we have an entire page dedicated to the subject. Visit the tubeless bicycle tires page for more information. In most cases the choice actually depends on the user’s personal preference as both have associated benefits and drawbacks as well.
Hybrid and Commuter Bicycle Tires and Tubes
Commuter bikes come with a different type of tires as compared to mountain bike tires. They have a thick layer of rubber and may be lined with Kevlar if you prefer puncture resistant bike tires. They however lack the characteristic knobs found on mountain bike tires. This provides them with the ability to roll smoothly with least resistance on smooth road surfaces.
Mountain Bike Tires
Off-road cycling can be quite demanding, and only the right type of tire should be used in these rough conditions. High puncture resistance and thick rubber knobs are among the most important features to look out for in the best tire for this application.
Cyclo-Cross and Road Bike Tires
These different riding applications usually have different needs although the wheels used by each bike style are similar in size. The main factor to keep in mind here is that cyclo-cross bikes tend to have more treads as they tackle a relatively rougher terrain as compared to the smooth road surfaces road bikes ride on. Road racing bikes usually have a lighter profile to assist in attaining higher speeds when riding on the smooth open road. The weight of the tire is the main determinant of price for tires in this group as durability tends to be high even with the more affordable variety.
Cyclo-cross Bicycle Tire and Tubes
Cyclo-cross riding requires tires with a better grip. This means riding on tires with lower pressure. In this case it is best to use tubular tires as they can be ridden at lower pressure without the risk of pinch flats, a common occurrence in clincher tires at low pressure. However, if you can find clincher tires with thick treads then you will be good to go as well.
Where to Buy Bicycle Tires and Tubes?
If you are interested in buying bicycle tires and tubes you are invited to visit these trusted online stores: