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Old 06-27-12, 09:53 PM   #1
sfreitas323
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When to change tires

Hey everyone

I was just curious to everyone's opinion on when to proactively change you're tires. I have a trek 7.3 fx that I bought in may of 2007. I would say it only has about 500 total miles on it. I have never had a flat but I do have an inner tube in my seat pack just in case. So the tires and inner tubes are over 5 years old. I know many people would say "you need to ride more if you're only averaging 100 miles a year and I agree. Hopefully I'll be riding a lot more this year. The tires look alright. Nowhere near new.



As you can see there is still some tread left

Just wondering what everyone thinks.
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Old 06-28-12, 01:49 AM   #2
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Unless you have been riding on really rough roads, you should be fine. I have about 3k miles on my Ultragatorskins and they are beginning to look flat. And as I was changing a flat I noticed a pretty deep slice in the tire. Not sure if it's deep enough to matter. Unless your tires have rotted out from heat, cold heat/cold, you should be fine. Let the air out of the innertube and inspect the tire. I think sidewalls are thinner than the tread, so any damage to sidewalls should be cause for replacing tires. If you go really fast (35+ mph) down steep hills, you don't want to have a tire fail.

Tread on tires is pretty useless. Road tires are slick.
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Old 06-28-12, 01:59 AM   #3
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I have the same bike (new) and your tires look just like mine. That thread pattern is like that, smooth in the center with some thread on the sides. I'd say you have barely put a dent on those tires.
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Old 06-28-12, 07:48 AM   #4
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Rear tires typically wear faster than front tires - usually much faster. My experience is that even cheap tires are good for 4 thousand miles. At that point I move the front to the rear and put a new tire on the front.
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Old 06-28-12, 02:15 PM   #5
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Rear tires typically wear faster than front tires - usually much faster. My experience is that even cheap tires are good for 4 thousand miles. At that point I move the front to the rear and put a new tire on the front.
And then how long do you leave the previous front tire on the rear? You could rotate tires more often, like with cars (dismount tires and swap).

Previous owner of my car only bought 2 tires at a time, swapping them front to rear and only putting new ones on the front. Man it was confusing and I ended up with a car with 2 bald rear tires when I first bought it. Since then I have religiously rotated my tires every 5K-6K miles and always purchase 4 at a time. I can't stand having tires of different ages on the car. Dunno if the same will go for the bike or not. Haven't had a flat yet *knock on wood* but if I don't I might consider rotating my tires front/rear every 1K miles or so, or maybe every year if I don't go 1K in a year.
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Old 06-28-12, 04:58 PM   #6
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And then how long do you leave the previous front tire on the rear? You could rotate tires more often, like with cars (dismount tires and swap).
Until it's worn out. Since the rear tire wears out much faster than the front tire, it is not advisable to put a rear tire on the front. Your freshest tire should always be on the front because if a tire is going to go down because of wear, you want it to be the rear tire. This is what Sheldon Brown and many others around these parts have said, so I've stuck to it.

On the subject of car tires, I do a 5 tire rotation every 3,000 miles. It might be overkill, but A) I don't drive my SUV very often (3,000 miles a year tops) and B) my tires with approx. 36K miles on them are worn evenly and still have plenty of life left. (I used to drive a lot more...86 mile commute one way.)
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Old 06-29-12, 02:55 PM   #7
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Cars also have toe in and camber, and the amounts of each may be different front to back, so not rotating your tires can cause unusual wear patterns and lead to more problems than just going bald.

Bike wheels don't have toe in or camber (well I suppose the do while you are in a turn) so their wear will be much more uniform on the tire itself. Also the wear pattern will be very similar front to back except for how fast that wear occurs.
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Old 06-29-12, 03:13 PM   #8
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Yeah you're right. Probably dumb to go to the trouble of "rotating" bike tires haha
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