Where to pump up your bike wheels
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How to inflate a wheel?
Everyone has come across a situation when a car has a flat tire. Yes, it is not very pleasant, especially in the morning and especially when you are in a hurry somewhere. There may be several reasons:. it is either a puncture, or a nipple, or the rubber does not fit snugly to the disc, read more here. And so you go out and see that it is lowered, but you have to go. So it is necessary to pump up, but in the evening it is necessary for a tire fitting. For experienced drivers, it couldn’t be easier once the tires are inflated. But for young inexperienced drivers, this can cause difficulties. To help beginners, our useful advice is how to pump up a wheel.
So I took a photo of a cheat sheet that will help you navigate the pumping issue. I will carry out all the actions on my FORD FUSION car; I also have an electric compressor for inflating the wheels. I also advise you to take on the likeness, because manual is not very convenient.
1) As you can see in the photo, the wheel is slightly deflated. This can be seen by the swelling of the tire. of course this is an inaccurate method of determination, however, it can be compared with other tires, if they differ, then it definitely lowers. you need to pump up.
2) We take out the pump, it receives electricity from the cigarette lighter.
3) Unscrew the cap at the “nipple”, it protects from dust and dirt.
Unscrew the nipple cap
4) We insert most of the electric wire into the cigarette lighter.
Most with an electric wire, insert into the cigarette lighter
5) Connect the rubber hose with the tip to the nipple.
We connect to the nipple
After you put the tip on the nipple, compressed air will flow. do not be afraid to insert it deeper, after that we turn the plastic handle 90 degrees.
6) Everything is connected, the pressure gauge on the pump shows 1.5 atmospheres for my car is not enough, wrote in more detail here.
1.5 atmospheres is not enough
7) Turn on the compressor, and wait until the pressure gauge shows 2.0 atmospheres.
Then we disconnect the pump and tighten the plastic cap. Everything!
In this post we have detailed how to inflate a tire, I think this information will be useful to you. Read our other articles.
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How to inflate bicycle wheels? Helpful hints
Every owner of a two-wheeled iron horse knows how to pump up the wheels of a bicycle. However, even some experienced cyclists who have ridden for years do not understand how to get the job done right.
How to inflate a bicycle wheel with a pump, what pressure should the tires have, how often should the procedure be used? All these questions concern avid cyclists.
How to determine the tire pressure level?
A more reliable way to determine tire pressure is to use a pressure gauge. When performing a task using the device, it is worth counting the number of pump strokes until the optimal level is reached. This approach will tell you how to inflate the bike wheels next time, even without access to a pressure gauge.
Why is it important to maintain high tire pressure?
It should be noted right away that you should not be afraid to pump the wheels. The upper limit for most tires is quite high. Therefore, extra effort usually does not lead to tire rupture. It is much worse to ride on flat tires, because in this case, the likelihood of punctures and other damage increases, which can lead to the need for repair or replacement of the bike camera.
What else threatens riding on half-flat tires and unwillingness to figure out how to pump up the wheels of a bicycle? Due to insufficient pressure, the shock absorption capacity of the tires deteriorates. High-speed driving on bumps, moving on sections with rough terrain. all this can lead to the formation of so-called eights on wheels, damage to the rims.
To what level should the wheels be inflated?
- How do I inflate my bike wheels for comfortable riding on flat, hard surfaces? In this case, it is necessary to create a higher pressure in the tires of the order of 3.5 atmospheres. Insufficient pumping of the wheels will lead to an increase in the area of contact of the wheels with the road and, accordingly, a decrease in driving speed.
- How to inflate a bicycle wheel while preparing a vehicle for riding on the ground? Here it is worth setting the tire pressure, which is slightly higher than the minimum and is about 2.6 atmospheres. Softer wheels will dampen vibrations when in contact with bumps. Among other things, the increased contact area with the road will increase traction on descents and sharp turns.
Let’s start pumping the wheels
- After releasing the tire nipple, you need to completely release the air from the wheel.
- A pump is connected to the nipple, the wheel is inflated to the desired level.
- During operation, the pump is disconnected from time to time to check the pressure with a pressure gauge.
- At the end, the pump is retracted to the side, a protective cap is screwed onto the nipple.
Similar actions are performed with the second wheel. The tire will be considered inflated optimally when the pressure level is exceeded by about 5-8% of the value marked on the tire.
The main thing. do not forget to count the number of strokes until the required pressure level is reached. In the future, this will save you unnecessary trouble and save a lot of effort.
How to inflate a bicycle wheel without a pump? It would seem that it is unrealistic to cope with such a task. However, when you do not have a standard tire inflation tool at hand, you can use a homemade compressor from a vacuum cleaner with a reverse air function. The main thing. find a suitable hose for this and reliably isolate all connections of the homemade device.
How often to inflate bicycle tires?
If the tire pressure is exceeded, the tire may burst or explode. Therefore, it is worth regularly checking the condition of the wheels with a pressure gauge. For mountain bikes several times a week, for road bikes after each ride.
If you follow such simple recommendations, trips will be much more pleasant, easier and more efficient. Ultimately, timely inflation of the wheels and maintaining the optimal level of tire pressure will eliminate the need to carry your favorite bike on your own shoulders.
What should be the pressure in the bicycle tires?
Oddly enough, first of all the quality of cycling, especially on asphalt, depends on the pressure in the wheels of the bike. Under-inflated wheels easily break through and dampen a large percentage of the cyclist’s efforts, while over-inflated wheels can damage the camera and lead to its rapid wear. Accurate knowledge and experience will help you find the middle ground.
In fact, the optimal pressure in the tires of a bicycle is a purely individual parameter, which each biker varies within certain limits for himself: for his riding style, for the planned route and the current level of training. The limits are set by technological constraints, which we will consider further.
Here are the main factors to consider when choosing an inflation level:
- high pressure gives “roll”. rolling speed, saving the strength of the cyclist;
- excessively high, in turn, can provoke a breakdown of the chamber against the rim from the inside;
- similarly, low pressure leads to “snake bites” when a rim on an obstacle or bump pierces the chamber at two points at once and reaches the tire;
- low pressure prevents damage to mechanisms on numerous bumps;
- at low pressure better “grip” and easier to move on rough terrain.
Taking into account all the pros and cons, a single recommendation can be made: the wheels should be inflated enough to provide good traction and not damage the camera. For this, there are standards for what pressure is considered acceptable. We will consider them further.
What is written on the tires
The secret to making the right choice is very simple: just look at the inflated wheel. Next to the information about the size of the tire there will be information about the permissible pressure range in the chamber.
Why is this information not shown on the camera itself? Because the only point in it that is subject to real stress is the nipple, and its mechanism is very reliable. Otherwise, the normal pressure, which increases by an order of magnitude during fast skiing, is taken by the tire, and how much it will be compressed is the main limitation.
So, if the pressure is too low, the tire will break closer to the rim, bite the chamber, leading to a breakdown, and if it is too low, it may just burst on one of the bumps or when driving on hot asphalt.
How is blood pressure measured?
It is customary to designate pressure in three units of measurement:
- Psi. pound-force per square inch. pound-force per square inch;
- BAR. bars, usually equated to measurement in “atmospheres”;
- Pa. pascal.
Since many tire manufacturers focus on the American market, the Psi designation is most often found. In English-speaking sources, it is usually simplified to “pound”, or pound, that is, when they say that a pressure of 2 pounds, they mean Psi. This unit of measurement is outdated, used only in the United States, but, as they say, “more alive than all living things”.
Bars are also obsolete units of measurement, but they are actively supported in many other countries, incl. European. This unit of measurement is actively used, as it has something in common with the “atmosphere”, which is quite convenient for measurements.
Pascal is the only metrically correct unit on the list, but rarely used in bicycle designations.
The ratio between all units is as follows: 1 Bar = 100,000 Pa = 14.504 Psi.
What do they write on the tires? For example, (2.38-4.0) is clearly atmospheres, or BAR, and (95-135) is Psi. If the figure has more than 3 characters or the prefix “k” (kilo), we are talking about metric Pascal. Most often, the desired value is located under the size designation and is duplicated in BAR and Psi as a range, clearly indicating to what pressure you can pump.
Actually, the manufacturer indicates the range within which the tire can function, then. the freedom of the cyclist.
How to pump
Bicycle luggage requires maintenance and inflation very often. Even on the most “hardy” city and mountain bikes, it is required to check and pump up the camera every 2-3 weeks, since the air leaks not only through the nipple, but also simply through the rubber. High pressure “helps” air molecules find their way through an insufficiently dense chamber.
“City”, or, simply, budget bicycles, it is enough to pump up once every 2-4 weeks, mountain bikes. at least once every two weeks, road bikes. once a week, and road and sports bikes. before each trip.
Therefore, the pump is not only an emergency accessory that is used only when a punctured wheel is changed, but also a necessary part of the preparation for departure. Active cyclists should consider purchasing two pumps:
- portable. as part of an emergency kit or on long trips;
- stationary with a stop and a pressure gauge. for periodic maintenance of your tires.
By the way, an ordinary car pump perfectly takes the place of a stationary pump. It is also suitable for bicycles, shows exactly how many atmospheres are pumped up, and does not take up additional space. Some people prefer to pump up on “professional” pumps at gas stations, but the lack of their own professional tool can play a bad joke in the event of an unexpected situation or when you deviate from the standard route.
Here are some tables that will help you navigate in difficult situations, namely:
- an unknown tire without markings was purchased;
- no physical access to the bike;
- the marking is incomprehensible, the numbers are marked in unknown units.
Mountain bike table:
For a road bike, the pressure should be much higher, and typically range between 6.5. 9 atmospheres (up to 130 Psi), up to the maximum indicated by the manufacturer.
Seasonal adjustments are quite serious, mainly related to mountain bikes. In summer, you should slightly underestimate the pumping and not rest on the maximum. Hot asphalt heats up the air inside the chamber, which increases the volume and therefore the pressure. Also, a pumped tire wears out very quickly.
In winter, you should sometimes slightly exceed the maximum in order to achieve maximum work from the tread, especially if the rubber is selected with spikes.
For heavy riders or heavily loaded bikes, it is very important to add pressure, because a lot of mass will squeeze the wheel of the bike and problems with insufficiently inflated cameras can come out much earlier.
Recommended pressure for weight addition is 1% for every kilogram of rider weight over 50.
Approximate values by type of rubber
You can also give recommendations for inflating wheels with different tires.
For slicks and semi-slick, the use of pressure below the maximum is allowed only in hot weather. a quarter shortage already negates the entire effect of such rubber, because it is “sharpened” for the maximum diameter and the absence of resistance.
Classic cross-country treads with a width of 2-2.3 inches inflate to 3-4 BAR, depending on the track and habit, a lower value will make riding a strength training, and higher values are simply not allowed by manufacturers, as they lead to a real “explosion” when peak load.
Extreme tires, whether downhill 2.3 wide tricky treads, or BMX stunt models should be inflated medium, between high and low to have sufficient traction, and then subtly varied for each trick or descent.
The pressure in a bicycle tire is a very important parameter, it should be understood what restrictions are imposed by tire manufacturers and what riding style of a particular rider can be improved with just a couple of strokes of the pump handle. In any case, how many atmospheres to pump at each moment is a unique decision, and it is taken, rather, based on accumulated experience than according to strict rules.