Just started commuting to work (4 miles) on my Raleigh Talus 4.0, with the original knobbie tires. From what I've read, the best improvement for my purely paved commute would be to switch to slick tires. With my Weinmann 26 x 1.5 1.95 (what does this third number mean?) rims, I'm thinking about getting 26 x 1.5 road tires. 80 psi seems to be the pretty standard suggested max pressure for road commutes, but the tires I've seen online display a max psi of around 50 most of the time.
Any suggestions on good, budget tires and tubes that would be good for this conversion? Is the 80 psi a hill to die on, or will the knobbie to slick transition be enough to get some extra efficiency?
Also, are the changes to the fork and handle bar essential? Everything on the bike is the standard layout (Raleigh Bicycles - Talus 4) but maybe a bit older (got the bike maybe 5 years ago).
Any other suggestions from seasoned commuters would be great! Just looking to learn and maximize my efficiency on the road.