How to decide when it's time to replace a bike tire

Forums Mountain Bike Forum How to decide when it's time to replace a bike tire


This topic contains 9 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  rhut 1 year, 9 months ago.

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  • #216175

    Clearly this tire is past its prime! [Even though the tread itself isn’t too worn, dry rot has obviously set in.]

    How do you determine when a bike tire needs to be replaced?

  • #216218

    That decision usually gets made for me. I either pinch flat the tire, cut the sidewall, or rip the casing. Not too many of my tires last as long as the knobs themselves.

    • #216263

      Wow, Aaron you are rough on tires — you and that eastern chunder.  I’m curious, what type of tires are you riding on?

    • #216269

      Depending on conditions a high to low profile is ok imho. However when the side wall is showing exposed threads and or latex is seeping through the tyre tread then the tyre structure is compromised.

  • #216259

    When sidewall is torn beyond any possible repair, when tread isn’t visible without microscope, or when current tire doesn’t do its job well enough.

    Still, I’m glad I didn’t throw away one worn out tire. When my other tire blew I just used an old one for a few days before a  new replacement arrived by mail.

  • #216262

    I just changed a rear tire.  It’s center knobs were still present but noticeably worn (probably around 75% worn) and the shoulder lugs were still strong.  I could have continued to use the tire for sure, but man was there a MAJOR improvement in traction in technical climbing with the new tire.  Maybe that had a lot to do with riding in the loose scree here on the Front Range of CO.

  • #233573

    I just found this thread and thought it was kind of interesting as I just replaced my rear tire. I went from a 2.10 stock tire to a 2.35 Bontrager XR3. The old tire was original to the bike and in about a year it was looking like a baldy. The new tire rubbed the frame until I took a rat tail file to the mount slots and basically did a rough line bore on them. These aluminum frames grind easy. I love the larger tire. More stable ride on loose scree, softer with the suspension cranked hard which helps on climbing, and more ground to pedal clearance. While it raised the bike almost a half inch overall, it didn’t change the seat to pedal geometry any. Rides like a new and improved bike.

  • #233579

    If you’re a budget MTB’r like me: when it rips in two.

    • #233582

      Have not gotten to that point yet.

  • #233584

    I usually end up tearing a sidewall before anything else. That’s a mix of my location of trails with sharp rocks and my lack of skill in avoiding them.


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