Bicycle Repair Tips for Fixing Flat Tires

San Diego Bike Accident Lawyer on What to Know About Bicycle Maintenance and Easy-to-Understand Bike Tire Repair Steps

Casual, recreational and seasoned bicyclists usually incur a flat tire at one time or another. Whether it happens during the course of running errands, riding for fun, fitness or cycling to one of the many local San Diego cycling destinations, all cyclists need to know how to change a flat.

The art of bicycle repair does not present much difficulty from a technical perspective. If you have technical ability, any bicycle maintenance or repair tasks you perform will make the projects go a lot more smoothly.

Changing a flat tire or mending a punctured inner tube are two of the most common bicycle chores you will encounter. For a regular rider, learning how to fix a flat tire will definitely come in handy and may get you out of a tough situation.

Bike Tire Repair Tools

Having the right tools and materials in your cycling gear bag or bike repair kit makes the chore easy and ensures you can do a good job. Get yourself started on the road to simple do-it-yourself tire repairs with these items:

  • Bicycle pump
  • Tire patch kit
  • Two tire levers
  • Extra inner tubes

What to Do If a Bike Tire Suddenly Blows Out on the Road

For San Diego cyclists who experience a flat tire while out biking:

  • Change the gears to the small cog as you slow the bike down. This will make reinstalling the wheel easier.
  • Take the front tire off by freeing the brake and opening the release. A slight tug on the wheel and it should come out of the forks.
  • On the back wheel, release the brakes and the skewer and pull down on the derailleur.
  • Now, pull the wheel out and lay the bike down on the ground with the chain side up. You may need a couple of tire levers to get the tire off the rim.
  • Simply pull the inner tube away from the rim. Replacing the punctured tube with a spare is the easiest and fastest way to fix a flat.

How to Fix a Flat Bike Tire Without a Spare

If you are out of spares, or want to re-use the tube, you can also repair the puncture:

  • Fill the tube with air and rotate it in a bucket of water if possible. You can also put the tube close to your cheek and work your fingers along the tube to listen for air escaping from the hole.
  • Once you locate the puncture, rough the surface of the tube around the hole.
  • Next, apply glue on the inner tube and on the rubber patch.
  • When the glue has a “tacky” consistency, apply the patch over the hole and press firmly.
  • Allow a few minutes for the glue and patch to bond to the tube.
  • Before you re-insert the tube, locate the source of the puncture. Carefully examine the interior and exterior of the tire visually and with your fingers. Proceed with care as you look for the sharp item that caused the flat. Look for gashes, rips or sharp objects.
  • When placing the tire back on the wheel, hold the rim at the top as you re-install the tube. Do not pinch the inner tube if you need to use the lever.

Need Free Legal Advice After a Bicycle Accident?

San Diego bike accident lawyer Frederick M. Dudek, a bicycle commuter with more than 35 years of cycling experience throughout California and seasoned attorney, offers this resource to you. If you suffered a cycling injury or property damage in a crash due to a negligent motorist, contact our bicycle accident attorney for a free, no obligation discussion of your potential case. When a bike accident happens, get a bike accident lawyer who knows the law and your rights as a cyclist.