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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 05-02-12, 02:04 PM   #1
WonderMonkey
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Air loss in tires

I find that I only have to put air in my tires about once every five days. I check them each ride though. Is this typical?
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Old 05-02-12, 02:05 PM   #2
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Depends on your tires, but I'd say you're not atypical.
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Old 05-02-12, 02:21 PM   #3
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yes some air loss is normal - how much are you losing over that time?
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Old 05-02-12, 02:30 PM   #4
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If you ride in a range, i.e. 85-120 psi, then yes you could go several days. I start my rides at 110 psi, so I am always "topping off" every ride. But it is usually only 5-10 psi.
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Old 05-02-12, 02:34 PM   #5
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I would ask what size tire you have on your bike? Also, how often, and for how long do you usually ride in those five days? Lastly, what is the shape of the surface on which you ride? I ask these questions, because it is normal on higher pressure bike tires to have to routinely re-fill the tires. And this is because of the material and the amount of force being placed on the bike.

For example, I ride a touring bike, with 700x37. 37 is a relatively wide tire. I will ride on average 100-150 miles in a week. As a substantial clyde (6'4" @ 270lbs) I will refill my tire (60 psi) every two weeks or so. This frequency is actually too infrequent, but I can be lazy and stubborn at times.

good on you by the way for actually continuing to fill your tires. Not having air in your tires deforms your wheel set, and nobody wants that.

Another good question is whether or not it is happening in a similar fashion to both tires. This would suggest that it is frequent use and time that are causing the air loss. A leak in both tires would be, i would think, much less likely, although not unheard of.
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Old 05-02-12, 02:36 PM   #6
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Tube material makes a difference , but I'm usually 5-10 pounds sq in. Except for today, 40 psi . I knew then something was wrong .
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Old 05-02-12, 03:06 PM   #7
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Depends on your tires, but I'd say you're not atypical.
This is the correct answer.

For what it's worth, I have to air mine up daily, because I have latex tubes.
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Old 05-02-12, 03:15 PM   #8
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I think it's pretty normal.

I use the really thick tubes and they seem to lose a very small amount. I check them twice a week but usually only have to add air once a week and it's never a lot...I keep them at 60 psi and it will be down to 58 usually. They are heavier tubes and not everyone wants to add that weight to the bike, but it works for me.
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Old 05-02-12, 05:04 PM   #9
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To be honest I don't know what size tires I have. Hybrids.... Continentals... x-large frame Cannondale Quick 5. When I do need air It is just a half pump or so. I'm usually within a few pounds. So I don't really HAVE to put air in so frequent but I do.
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Old 05-02-12, 05:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WonderMonkey View Post
To be honest I don't know what size tires I have. Hybrids.... Continentals... x-large frame Cannondale Quick 5. When I do need air It is just a half pump or so. I'm usually within a few pounds. So I don't really HAVE to put air in so frequent but I do.
IT is worth checking, as it only takes a few mins anyway. But it sounds right , i normal lose a few PSI over a few days
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Old 05-02-12, 06:48 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by WonderMonkey View Post
To be honest I don't know what size tires I have. Hybrids.... Continentals... x-large frame Cannondale Quick 5. When I do need air It is just a half pump or so. I'm usually within a few pounds. So I don't really HAVE to put air in so frequent but I do.
The thing to keep in mind is that it is normal for bicycle tubes to loose air over time. So your experience with air loss is typical and there is nothing wrong with your tubes.
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Old 05-02-12, 07:11 PM   #12
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My road bike tires seem to need air every day if I rode everyday. My Quick needs air about every five days. Like yours.
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Old 05-02-12, 07:24 PM   #13
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The thing to keep in mind is that it is normal for bicycle tubes to loose air over time. So your experience with air loss is typical and there is nothing wrong with your tubes.
I was actually thinking that it was a long time to not actually need air!
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Old 05-02-12, 09:38 PM   #14
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I fill mine at LEAST every other ride (usually ride every other day)... but I prefer to pump them up each time I ride. I think I lose 10 psi or so just hooking up the pump.

regular tubes hold air much better than latex.
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Old 05-03-12, 05:57 AM   #15
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Schraeder valves leak more than Presta.

Or

The other way around.
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Old 05-03-12, 06:28 AM   #16
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Tire permeability (or in the case of bikes it's the tubes) has always been a problem. As pointed out different materials will result in differing losses.
The same thing happens with your car tires (or tyres for our "English" speaking brethren). The amount of loss or migration of the air varies with not only the material used in the tubes but of the moisture content in the 'air' being used to fill the tires.

Nitrogen could be used and you'd have to check/fill your tires less often due to it's better migration loss and hygroscopic properties. Of course that can get expensive unless you have access to free nitrogen.

Summary: What you have is normal and check your tire pressure before a ride.
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Old 05-03-12, 01:04 PM   #17
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Air loss is NORMAL!
The skinnier/higher pressure the more PSI you lose per day.
On my Hybrid, I have 26MM tires that I air up to 120 PSI. It easily loses 10-15 PSI the first day. I've noticed, once the pressure is down to about 90 PSI, it loses MUCH less per day. In fact, sitting over the winter for about 4 months (used the "rain" bike) the tires pretty much "stabilized at about 70 PSI.
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Old 05-03-12, 01:38 PM   #18
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I just get used to topping off tires for rides.. I like running at 120-130psi on my road bike.
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Old 05-19-12, 11:21 PM   #19
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Thanks for the info, I had been wondering the same thing, I was wondering if it was normal to have to add air every 4-5 days. I'm still new to skinnier tires.
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Old 05-20-12, 03:39 AM   #20
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Question: How are you checking your tires? A gauge? Or the hand check? If it is the hand check, that is not the right way really. Your hand cannot detect a 10-20 psi loss but it can really effect your riding and flats can happen quicker too. I commute everyday and everyday I need to add in a little air to the back tire.
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Old 05-20-12, 04:22 AM   #21
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700x40@90psi here, fill up every 3-4 days. Probably should do 2, but I'm lazy.
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Old 05-20-12, 01:15 PM   #22
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Question: How are you checking your tires? A gauge? Or the hand check? If it is the hand check, that is not the right way really. Your hand cannot detect a 10-20 psi loss but it can really effect your riding and flats can happen quicker too. I commute everyday and everyday I need to add in a little air to the back tire.
The gauge on my pump. I know by checking I loose a puff of air but I hook it up and put a half pump in (usually) and off I go.
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