Monitoring and pumping up tyres: how often?

kanto
kanto Posts: 112
edited February 2010 in Road beginners
Hi. I have 700 x 25 Schwalbe tyres and I pump them to about 100 PSI, as that is what most people have reccomended for the 25s, but I'm wondering how often I should be pumping these up? I have about four rides a week, usually 50km each ride, so I'm wondering if there is something I could get to check the pressure? Or should I be pumping them every week anyway? I have sometimes left it 3-4 weeks between pumping, and I'm guessing that might have caused problems.

I have had a few tyres get damaged by potholes which I couldn't avoid, one when the tyre hadn't been pumped for a week, and the other shortly after it was at 100 PSI. Not sure which is likely to stop that; higher pressure, or could you go to high?

Thx

Comments

  • porker33
    porker33 Posts: 636
    I check pressures and adjust if required before I ride the bike and inspect tyres on return.
    For the small ammount of time it takes, I think it is worth it as you know exactly where you are with your equipment.
  • Ands
    Ands Posts: 1,437
    I do mine before every ride. Most of the time. :wink:
  • wilshawk
    wilshawk Posts: 119
    I ride around 7 miles per week day, and find I can often go a few weeks before I need to to pump the tires.

    Also It may not always be a bad thing if the tires are getting softer as I heard they may be some benefits from softer tires like;

    Increased contact area with the road, and therefore more grip, which can help with turning and stuff, although it does mean you will be a bit slower too, and the tires would get more worn out.

    I heard it said that softer tires will result in a more comfortable ride when going over bumpy ground, although I never really tested this properly myself.

    You said you damaged the 'tire' on potholes, I dont understand how the tire could get damged, did you mean the wheel? Either way I think Id would be more worried about protecting the wheel from impact and harder tires would be better for that.
  • kanto
    kanto Posts: 112
    wilshawk wrote:
    I ride around 7 miles per week day, and find I can often go a few weeks before I need to to pump the tires.

    Also It may not always be a bad thing if the tires are getting softer as I heard they may be some benefits from softer tires like;

    Increased contact area with the road, and therefore more grip, which can help with turning and stuff, although it does mean you will be a bit slower too, and the tires would get more worn out.

    I heard it said that softer tires will result in a more comfortable ride when going over bumpy ground, although I never really tested this properly myself.

    You said you damaged the 'tire' on potholes, I dont understand how the tire could get damged, did you mean the wheel? Either way I think Id would be more worried about protecting the wheel from impact and harder tires would be better for that.

    The roads where I am aren't great, especially since the snow. As you said, when I have 100 PSI on my first ride, it is very stiff and wooden going over the bumpy and uneve ground. I guess it is finding the balance between comfort, and optimal performance of the tyre, and bike. What PSI are you using?

    And for the damage, I did mean the tyre :oops: First tyre, which I got with the bike, I had a slight rip into the tyre, and you could see the threading of the tyre. And on the kevlar tyre I changed to, I noticed that the fine rubber layer had about a 0.3cm witdth scrape, and the top layer had come off. The damage is minimal, but enough to have to replace it. I only suspected going over potholes caused this, because of the sudden impact, as I had no puncture, and the tyres weren't worn. I'm generally careful of going over grit and get out early for potholes I know of, but since the snow has messed with the roads, I have noticed many new ones, and often 1-2m width, so when a car was up close I couldn't pull out.
  • hopper1
    hopper1 Posts: 4,389
    I check my tyres every ride, I ride about 6 times a week, on a good week. :wink:
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  • cathald
    cathald Posts: 105
    I check mine before every ride
    I think they can lose about 10psi per week if not checked
    softer tyre's can also lead to puncture's also I believe
  • wilshawk
    wilshawk Posts: 119
    kanto wrote:
    The roads where I am aren't great, especially since the snow. As you said, when I have 100 PSI on my first ride, it is very stiff and wooden going over the bumpy and uneve ground. I guess it is finding the balance between comfort, and optimal performance of the tyre, and bike. What PSI are you using?

    And for the damage, I did mean the tyre :oops: First tyre, which I got with the bike, I had a slight rip into the tyre, and you could see the threading of the tyre. And on the kevlar tyre I changed to, I noticed that the fine rubber layer had about a 0.3cm witdth scrape, and the top layer had come off. The damage is minimal, but enough to have to replace it. I only suspected going over potholes caused this, because of the sudden impact, as I had no puncture, and the tyres weren't worn. I'm generally careful of going over grit and get out early for potholes I know of, but since the snow has messed with the roads, I have noticed many new ones, and often 1-2m width, so when a car was up close I couldn't pull out.

    Now you mention how you damaged your tires that makes sense, but it does not seem obvious to me whether a harder or flatter tire would be more likely to get damaged by an impact. On the one hand a more pumped tire tries to keep its shape against the impact, so is probably more likelly to suffer piercing damage. On the other hand a softer tire spreads out more so perhaps would suffer less surface damage, but maybe the sides/ bead of the tire could get more damaged by impact...

    I ride in south London, although there is lots of bumps and holes along the way there are also many smooth strectches of road so overall I find harder tires optimal. I have never checked my PSI though!! I tend to pump unitl the tire feels solid and can barely be pushed in when pressed with your thumb, and then as soon as I get that feeling I stop and pump no further, so not to risk over inflating them.
  • Before a ride, I feel the tyres to make sure there is no squishyness.. its a decent enough gauge, and pump back up to 110 back 100 front once a week.

    After a ride I check for squishyness and any new cuts or debris that could work its way through the tyre and remove it.. Despite my tyres being notoriously bad performers when it comes to flat protection, the extra effort seems worth it.
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  • Flasheart
    Flasheart Posts: 1,278
    Before every ride for me. 116psi just like Michelin said to for my weight.
    I like the way the stones ping off into the folage ...and the cars and the shop windows :oops:
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  • porker33 wrote:
    I check pressures and adjust if required before I ride the bike and inspect tyres on return.
    For the small ammount of time it takes, I think it is worth it as you know exactly where you are with your equipment.

    +1
  • Moaner
    Moaner Posts: 117
    I ride about the same frequency / distance as you. I check by feel before each ride and pump never less than once a week. I keep the pressure at about 115 - don't know about your tyres - mine are GP400s.
  • hambones
    hambones Posts: 407
    I ride around 150 miles a week at the moment and tend to pump my tyres up to 120psi once a week. By the following week they tend to have dropped to around 90-100psi...
    Still breathing.....