One thing you learn early on as a child is how to ride a bike. Now, as an adult, it’s essential to know how to store bike tires without damaging them. It turns out that storing your bike tires is simpler than you think.
So, how do you store bike tires without damaging them? You want to keep your bike tires in a cool and dark place, ensuring they get some air while keeping them dry. Keep them covered and avoid extreme temperatures.
The last thing you want to do is come home to damaged tires. There are numerous other factors to keep in mind besides preventive measures like seasonality effects or different storage options.
Protecting Bike Tires in Storage
When storing your bike tires, there are three main things you want to avoid that really damage your bike. The first is UV light, which refers us back to keeping your bikes out of direct sun exposure. The second would be temperature extremes such as freezing cold or blisteringly hot. Lastly is ozone exposure, like fumes from motors.
Here are some tips to elongate the condition of your bike;
·Hang it upside down
The reason to hang your bike upside down is to take the weight off your tires. Similar to how, when we stand for too long our feet get sore, tires can deflate being up on themselves for so long. So things like a hanger rack help decrease this effect.
·Cover it up
You want to purchase your own tarp or even put a garbage bag over your bike so that dust and dirt won’t build up on it. It also helps protect it from the elements outside and in your storage space. Dirt can mess with the mechanisms inside your bike and deteriorate the wheels.
Before you put your bike into storage, bring it to a bike shop or perform your own maintenance on it. This is important so that if your bike is already damaged, it doesn’t take any further so, as it just sits there in storage. It’s as if you left your bike’s HP on low and when you came back after a long break and try to ride it again the first little bump in the road, and you’re out of HP.
If you hit an extremely low temperature, your bike can get damage inside and out. If water builds up, it will rust the metal, and as we all know, rust on a bike is pretty bad. So, along with checking your bike, make sure to check the temperature it’s in as well.
·A Good Rack
Racks are easy to use because you just hook your bike on and bam! It’s all set. The appeal of racks is, as mentioned before, getting the weight off of your bike’s tires and of course, the compact space it provides when you can hang it off a wall. There is also the option of hanging the rack from your ceiling, just make sure to use caution so it doesn’t fall.
How to Store Bike Tires in Winter?
You want to make sure you are removing anything from your bike that doesn’t need to be there, such as water bottles or electronic devices. Since you won’t be using your bike as often, if you live in a place with snow, especially, you’ll want to clean your bike. Getting off any dirt from trips is maintenance that the bike needs to ensure that if it’s sitting for a long time, it doesn’t get stuck on it.
Another thing to do is making sure to put air in your tires. Even if you aren’t on your bike all winter, it’s good to keep your tires filled up on air so that there aren’t any weird deformations that care their way into your wheels while you’re not using it. Also, make sure to add oil to your chains so they’re well protected against the potentially harsh weather that might seep in.
A tip here is to purchase some sort of bike cover so that it is shielded from anything such as hail, snow, or rain. Even the sun can be shielded by a simple tarp for your bike. If it’s outside, especially this is something that you will want to look into investing in. Make sure that it is locked up tight if it’s outside as well. To prevent not only thieves but your bike from falling over.
The cold air isn’t that bad for the bike itself, but if you have any electronic devices on your bike, they can be damaged internally in things like their batteries. However, if it’s freezing temperatures, the screws in your bike could potentially loosen and you might find cracks in your bike as well.
Why Do Bike Tires Crack?
Bike tires crack because we use them sometimes faster than they can go through their life cycles. Though rubber is a material with much giving and pull, it is a slowly degrading material as well. The biggest problem to them is UV exposure, but don’t worry about that in the sense of regular bike rides in the sun.
Rubber bike tires were meant to degrade. Also, consider the fact that since they are slowly cracking even if you don’t ride them for their full potential, they will still eventually crack. So, it’s better to go out and use them now as opposed to waiting before it’s too late.
If you use your bike enough, it will be similar to an off-roading vehicle’s tires. This is in the sense that it will lose tread before it cracks, so you won’t have to worry about that specific issue. Another thing is oxidation which gets into your tires and promotes cracking.
Cracking can be a real problem, is can also come when you ride your bike with too low of a pressure. Make sure the pressure in your bike is adequately set and double-check the inflation of your wheels. If your weight is too much for the bike, this can lead to the destruction of the tires.
How Do I Know if My Bike Tire is Damaged?
The main thing to look for is punctures to your tire, with things like glass, or any sharp object. You can flip your bike, so the tires are facing upwards, and if you find any objects in the tire, I recommend not trying to use your hands to get it out. Any obvious holes or puncture means damage to your tires, which can lead to replacements needed if a patch work job is not enough to fix it.
It’s obvious sometimes, when you have a big gash in your tire, that it’s damaged. But what about when your tire seems always to run flat no matter what you do? In that case, you might want to look closer at your tire to inspect it for any mutilations; sometimes they can be overlooked because of the color of the tires if yours are especially dark.
If you run over a pin, the pin will make a minuscule little hole that’s almost invisible to the naked eye. Or so it seems, so having bright lighting and close inspection is the way to go for this curious erosion to your tire’s life span.
Where is The Best Place to Store A Bike?
You usually want to store a bike against a wall, so that it won’t take up space. Bikes are very thin, so laying them against a wall is your best bet to get the largest amount of space. You most likely will want to store it in a garage, but if you’re in an apartment, check for any sort of storage shed you may use.
If you have spare tires that you’ll want to use in the future, it is also worth taking note that to store these properly as well to avoid any damage to them before use. They don’t need a varying type of storage, and just having them in the garage alongside your bike is good enough. If you’re using a public space for your bike, try keeping your tires in some sort of closet if you can or patio storage.
Bike Storage Ideas
You can buy a bike rack for your house to store your bike on so that it doesn’t take up space and is on something made explicitly for bike storage. You can also buy a rack that lets you put your bike up vertically, hanging it from the rack against the wall. Any organizational storage system like this is an excellent option for your bike.
I feel that, when I store my bike, I like to know that it’s convenient for the space I have. Having a child’s bike in the middle of the garage or just lying out on the lawn is a hazard. It can result in trips and injuries, so bike storage not only is a great option to elongate the wear of your tires but is also a way to prevent harm.
Purchasing Storage Options
You can buy a few different options for bike storage,
·Floor parking stand
·Classic bike rack
The bike hooks you can attach to a wall, hooking your tires through things like the holes, thus holding your bike up. With the floor parking stand, it mimics what you might see at a park in a shorter, more convenient form. And finally, with the classic bike rack, you get what you’d expect, something to hold your front and back tires, so the bike remains parked and still.
How Long Does Bike Tires Last in Storage?
When well taken care of, the average bike tire can last up to 5 years. This is a pretty long length of time, given that there is a minimal effort in storing a bike. Bike storage consists mostly of making sure it’s still, and out of harm’s way of heat or water.
You should consider as well how much use you get out of your bike. If you’re the type of person who goes out to dirt bike every weekend, your tires’ life span will be shorter than someone who just goes out maybe once every month or two for a little ride in the park. It’s essential to not have false expectations so that you don’t feel let down if your tires need to be replaced sooner than other people, you know.
Tire Care Products
One brand of tire care products is Armorall. They offer a lot of different items, such as a foam protectant, a tire shine spray, tire shine gel, or even shine and trim sponges. Their extreme tire foam protectant is one of their new additions and claims to clean your tires and paint them a deep black. Things like this are fantastic for the nourishment of your tires and can help them last longer in storage.
You don’t have to leave the condition of your tires entirely up to fate, or chance, or even just how you store them. A product like these is an additional form of protection on your tire, keeping it strong against potential damage and wear. Of course, it isn’t a fix-all type of thing, but I find that every little bit helps keep your tires like new.
Tire care products sometimes can’t fix the damage that has already been done. However, I find that they’re very useful in the prevention of damage before any is caused. If you, for example, put a helmet on when you’re out on a bike ride, if you fell, there wouldn’t be as much damage because of your helmet or protective padding compared to if you just went out without anything on.
When Do I Need to Change My Tire?
One way to measure if you need to change a bike tire, I find it is if you need to change a dish sponge. When your dish sponge no longer has the contours it once had and is one big mushy square, it’s time to change it. When your bike loses the grooves on its wheels, it’s time to change it.
Changing your tire is another vital safety practice that should be part of your bike owning experience. Things need to be replaced, and sometimes we can be hesitant to replace them because we don’t want to spend the money on something we already have. But sometimes you need just to suck it up and be honest with yourself; you need that new tire.
Of course, the goal is to store it the best you can, so that you can use it for a longer period. If you are careless with your things, they won’t hold out for you. Exposure to direct sunlight or moderate amounts of water, say in a storm, aren’t going to do you any favors.
How Do You Take A Bike Tire Off?
To take a bike tire off, you want to take off its valve cap firstly. You are making sure to take off both on either side of the tire. Next, you want to buy or use your own tire lever to pry off the tire. Alternatively, you can just squeeze the tires with your hands to try to pull the tire off once it’s loose from the wheel.
They use the expression “as easy as riding a bike” often, and I think that changing a bike tire sometimes can be just as easy. If you know the steps, you should be able to figure out what to do when it comes time to change a bike tire. They’re usually stuck on there firmly, so be patient when trying to pry it off.
If you’re younger, don’t be afraid to ask an adult for help doing this. In my own experience, having a helping hand around is never a bad thing, and needing help getting a tire off isn’t a laughable cause either. There’s nothing wrong with bringing it with you to a shop as well if you get new tires and seeing if you can get help there taking the old ones off.
What if They Get Damaged?
If you try all of this, and still your bike tires end up damaged, it’s not the end of the world. If you’re using your bike or if your tires end up a product of time’s deterioration, they’ll eventually be some degree of damaged. Changing a bike tire is just part of the journey of owning a bike.
I would say a word of caution here, though, that if your tires are damaged, please try to replace them as soon as possible. Riding a bike with broken or ripped up tires is not safe and can lead to easier accidents or possible injury. I mentioned before that; sometimes when something is broken, it’s best just to face it head-on and not push the problem off for another day.
The end of a tire on your bike doesn’t have to be the end of its life in general, however. You can always get creative with your tires and DIY some things! I will be going over some cool DIY projects for your damaged bike tires.