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  1. #1
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    When do you replace your tires??

    How many miles should I put on my tires (riding road) before I need to replace them? And what should I look for on the tire itself to see if it is wearing? Also, can you recommend a good replacement tire?? What should I look for? Thanks!!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Cambronne's Avatar
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    It depends upon what type of tires you use,whether they are fast wearing racing compound, or tougher touring tires, your weight, and the tarmac surfaces upon which you ride. A rough (very rough) rule would be: See to your racing tires after 1 000 miles of road riding, (or a weekend's racing) and your touring tires after anywhere from 2 500 to 4 000 miles. Some brands outlast others... Michelins will go on seemingly forever, although you may wish for their demise, as their grip is inferior to most other brands. Continentals, in my experience, grip better, but last half as long.

    Examine the tires for signs of wear... Road tires that have ribs or tread patterns will wear smooth down the centre, Slick road tires will wear "flat" across the centre. Also, look for cracks, tears, small chunks missing on the tread surface. These are all signs of worn out bicycle tires.

    If you detect wear on the rear tire, but the front looks okay, as is nearly always the case, you can dismount the tires and swap them, and run the better ex-front tire on the back.

    Always save the best of your old tires. A worn spare is better than no spare.

    Replace tires with ones of the same width, and, if you liked the originals, the same brand. You can experiment with slightly narrower or wider tires, but be advised... a few mm of width will noticeably change the bike's handling.

    I just ordered another set of Performance GT2 Kevlar, in 700x25 size, for US$16ea. See them at http://www.PerformanceBike.com. This makes perhaps five sets of these that I've used, and I average about 4 000 miles per set, rotating them once. The kevlar belt provides that little something extra against punctures. They are heavier than more expensive tires, and the herringbone tread means that they're not as fast as racing slicks, but they're exceptionally good at keeping air within and glass shards, nails, and road debris without, and that's what counts for me.

    One can buy a perfectly suitable pair of tires for under or around US$50. See what your LBS has on offer.

    Now, if you go roadracing, that's another matter... budget for $100 worth of tires (that's for two) every 1 000 miles or less. Or, ride for a tire manufacturer!

  3. #3
    Life is good RonH's Avatar
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    You didn't say anything about your weight, but I'm sure you are much lighter than me.
    I weigh 190 lbs and rotate my Continental Ultra 2000 every 500 miles or so.
    Just check the wear on your tires, especially the rear tire, every so often and rotate when you think it's time. Just don't let the tire wear flat. Make sure you rotate often enough so they keep the rounded shape.

    Ron
    Last edited by RonH; 06-14-01 at 03:00 PM.
    My bikes --> 2001 Litespeed Tuscany---2013 Cannondale CAAD 10 2 (5) "Racing Edition"

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  4. #4
    Love Me....Love My Bike! aerobat's Avatar
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    Has anyone had an experience with tire boots?

    I put one in last week when I had a flat and there was a hole you could see through in the tire. Can I leave it there and continue to use the tire, or should I replace the tire now and be done with it?
    "...perhaps the world needs a little more Canada" - Jean Chretian, 2003.

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    Torn tyres should be replaced ASAP. A boot will get you home, but a damaged sidewall is a blowout waiting to happen. An old worn spare will see you through till you can get a replacement, hence the usefulness of saving them.

    Is there a difference between racing tyres and training tyres? I would imagine that weight is less of an issue for training, but toughness and longevity would be more important.

    Winter tyres should be a little wider than summer ones. In the rain and dark, you need to absorb a little more abuse from the road.

    I have found that tyres of the same nominal size vary considerably. My new 32mm Panaracers are thinner than the old Michelin Tracers they replaced (now sadley unavailable). Some tyre/rim combination can be a bit tight, and can lead to sidewall damage every time you remove them.

  6. #6
    Portland Fred banerjek's Avatar
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    You're much better off changing tires based on wear/damage rather than mileage since conditions and tires vary so much. Generally speaking, if they look OK, they are. If you see big cuts in them, they are very visibly worn, or you frequently experience flats, it's a sign that you need a new set.

    The best ones to buy depend on what kind of riding you like to do. Most people do well with a decent training tire. I've got a set of Conti GP 4 Seasons on right now, but they don't blow me away. Still not a bad tire

  7. #7
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    It's fine to swap the less-worn tire from the front to back, but I'm not a fan of swapping a worn rear tire to the front. This increases your chances of a front-tire blowout, which can be very dangerous. Put a new tire on the front.
    2009 De Rosa King 3: Red Shifters, RD, Cranks, Brakes, BB, & Cassette; Force FD; Reynolds DV46c wheels.

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  8. #8
    Senior Member exRunner's Avatar
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    Since I don't ride during the winter (I only run between Holloween and Easter) while the bike is setting in the dinning room pissing my wife off I usually take everything apart and clean it, inspect it, replace it, etc. The wheels get trued and the tires get replaced. Works for me. I can do it at my leisure, look for good deals on line, etc. Never had an equipment failure during riding season.

    BTW, I only put in about 2500 miles a year on the bike. I log about 1500 miles running, and another 100 miles swiming instead.

  9. #9
    newbie rider
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    i have gatorskins on my rear wheel for 2K miles already and it looks barely used... there's not even a flat center section the shape is still curved.

    im 145lb

  10. #10
    Senior Member blamire's Avatar
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    coming up to 2000 miles and my front Schwalbe Stelvio is looking like it wants to be replaced. the rear got the boot 400 miles ago.
    currently have michelin pro2 on the back.
    might get some hutchinson's next

  11. #11
    Senior Member mustang1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cambronne View Post
    It depends upon what type of tires you use,whether they are fast wearing racing compound, or tougher touring tires, your weight, and the tarmac surfaces upon which you ride. A rough (very rough) rule would be: See to your racing tires after 1 000 miles of road riding, (or a weekend's racing) and your touring tires after anywhere from 2 500 to 4 000 miles. Some brands outlast others... Michelins will go on seemingly forever, although you may wish for their demise, as their grip is inferior to most other brands. Continentals, in my experience, grip better, but last half as long.

    Examine the tires for signs of wear... Road tires that have ribs or tread patterns will wear smooth down the centre, Slick road tires will wear "flat" across the centre. Also, look for cracks, tears, small chunks missing on the tread surface. These are all signs of worn out bicycle tires.

    If you detect wear on the rear tire, but the front looks okay, as is nearly always the case, you can dismount the tires and swap them, and run the better ex-front tire on the back.

    Always save the best of your old tires. A worn spare is better than no spare.

    Replace tires with ones of the same width, and, if you liked the originals, the same brand. You can experiment with slightly narrower or wider tires, but be advised... a few mm of width will noticeably change the bike's handling.

    I just ordered another set of Performance GT2 Kevlar, in 700x25 size, for US$16ea. See them at http://www.PerformanceBike.com. This makes perhaps five sets of these that I've used, and I average about 4 000 miles per set, rotating them once. The kevlar belt provides that little something extra against punctures. They are heavier than more expensive tires, and the herringbone tread means that they're not as fast as racing slicks, but they're exceptionally good at keeping air within and glass shards, nails, and road debris without, and that's what counts for me.

    One can buy a perfectly suitable pair of tires for under or around US$50. See what your LBS has on offer.

    Now, if you go roadracing, that's another matter... budget for $100 worth of tires (that's for two) every 1 000 miles or less. Or, ride for a tire manufacturer!
    I tried Michelin Krylion and Conti gatorskins. Although these tires are aimed at different types of riding, the gatorskin, as expacted, is harder wearing, less grippy.

    I didn't think it was good idea to swap front and rear tires. It's better to have more grip on the rear tire to stop oversteer, it's better to understeer which will force you to slow down in the corners (until you get two nice new grippy tires).

    Perhaps worn spare is better than no spare, but I'd say it's the other way round. If you have to replace your tire in an emergency (ie. you just HAVE to go out for a ride), then you're much more likely to get a puncture in the newly installed *worn* tire. If you had *no* tire, then you wouldn't go out for a ride, and have zero chance of a flat.

    I was using Krylions for training but these days I'm commuting and I found Gatorskins are superior choice. In fact, when I go back to training, I might just stick with gatorskins. The Krylion were a real beautiful tire, I didn't get too many puncture and the grip was good. The Gaotrskin gives me no grip in comparison, a harsher ride, but they hardly puncture, and that gives me more training time. Actually I should say "work out" time since training might imply I'm training for a race (which I'm not) in which case you need a good cornering tire to practice your cornering skills.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by aerobat View Post
    Has anyone had an experience with tire boots?

    I put one in last week when I had a flat and there was a hole you could see through in the tire. Can I leave it there and continue to use the tire, or should I replace the tire now and be done with it?
    I'll use a boot to get home, but then I'll usually replace the tire. I have heard of people using booted tires for weeks or months with no problems, but other people have repeated flats or worse.

  13. #13
    Senior Member grafik1979's Avatar
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    when I see the threads showing through the rubber.

  14. #14
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    I change mine when I start getting a lot of flats because they're so worn. Usually, 2 back tires to 1 front.
    -------

    Some sort of pithy irrelevant one-liner should go here.

  15. #15
    Senior Member MONGO!'s Avatar
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    I change mine when they're exactly 8 years old.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Homebrew01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RonH View Post
    You didn't say anything about your weight, but I'm sure you are much lighter than me.
    I weigh 190 lbs and rotate my Continental Ultra 2000 every 500 miles or so.
    Just check the wear on your tires, especially the rear tire, every so often and rotate when you think it's time. Just don't let the tire wear flat. Make sure you rotate often enough so they keep the rounded shape.

    Ron
    ???

    Just ride 'em. Rotate your car tires, not your bike tires. When they're worn (big cuts or threads showing) put on new ones.

    Have a couple of new tires & tubes on hand so you're ready.
    Bikes: Old steel race bikes, old Cannondale race bikes, less old Cannondale race bike, crappy old mtn bike

  17. #17
    Senior Member andrace's Avatar
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    I didn't think it was good idea to swap front and rear tires. It's better to have more grip on the rear tire to stop oversteer, it's better to understeer which will force you to slow down in the corners (until you get two nice new grippy tires).

    i think your concept of over/understeer is off a bit, if you experience either on a road bike with any regularity you belong in a straight jacket, prison, or a coffin.

  18. #18
    Portland Fred banerjek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MONGO! View Post
    I change mine when they're exactly 8 years old.
    Even if they still look perfectly serviceable? Some things that have been around awhile still look pretty good.

  19. #19
    Senior Member MONGO!'s Avatar
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    Like yourself, I believe in recycling things that are 8 years old, whether they need it or not

  20. #20
    purity of essence scotch's Avatar
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    if a tire starts getting squared off i'll throw on a new one.
    Neurosis is always a substitute for legitimate suffering.

    - Jung

  21. #21
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    my tires have wear indicators. also, i ride on race tires full-time and the rear lasts over 3500 miles easily.
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  22. #22
    Ol' Reliable formerbrit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scotch View Post
    if a tire starts getting squared off i'll throw on a new one.

    I agree. Though often I'll put it on my wife's bike
    "I have started many stories about bicycle racing but have never written one that is as good as the races are both on the indoor and outdoor tracks and on the roads."
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  23. #23
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    When a bit of cord starts showing.

  24. #24
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    Senior Member kle's Avatar
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    My general rule of thumb is that the rear tire will wear out about three-times faster than the front--so that I replace the rear tire about three times as often as the front. I don't bother with rotating the tires--once the rear is worn out, it gets replaced with a new one, and the front stays where it is. When do I know when it's time to replace the tire? When the rear tire has worn down flat and starts to give me that "hmm...I should replace it" feeling. As for the front, I inspect it regularly for cracks/gouges/punctures and wear. If there's too many of any of the aforementioned blemishes (or gives me that "hmm...I should replace it" feeling), then it gets replaced.

  25. #25
    Senior Member daxr's Avatar
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    My GP4000's have wear indicators - two pencil-tip size depressions, the bottom of which is the end of usable tread. 2000 miles so far, and still fine.

    I did have a piece of gravel go through one sidewall and tube at 800 miles. Then the next week a new tube blew through the small cut. I booted it with a dollar bill to get home, then with a strip of extra Velox rim tape - no problems since, and I should be able to just wear out the tire. You look for any distortion of the fabric casing in the damaged area - either its going to split out and fail, or it just keeps its shape and holds up.
    "... the age of Happy Motoring is over. Many Americans have already bought their last car -- they just don't know it yet."

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