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How to Change a Flat Bike Tire

By Zundy

Describes how to change a flat tire

REMOVE THE TIRE - depending on how tight your tire is on the wheel, you may be able to use two hands and pull the tire off the rim. Otherwise you will need some "tire irons" which can pry under the tire and lever the tire over the rim.

FIND THE HOLE - once you have the inner tube free of the tire, pump a little air into it. The hold may be obvious. If not, then get a bucket of soapy water and a sponge. Get the tube wet with soapy water and you will find the hole because soap bubbles will form over it. Dry the tube.

PREPARE THE HOLE - Get out your patch kit and find the sand paper or metal sander. Use the sander to scratch the tube over the hole in an area slightly larger than your patch. This will help the glue bind to the tube and patch.

APPLY GLUE & PATCH - Spread a thin layer of glue over the hole and surrounding sanded area. For most glues, you do not have to wait more than 30 seconds or so before it is tacky enough to apply the patch. Press the patch onto the gluey area and hold it tight with your fingers for 30 seconds. Most glues will set very quickly.

INSPECT THE TIRE - leaving the tube to the side, pick up your tire and run your fingers along the inside of it feeling for any thorns or glass etc. that may be poking through. If you don't remove the nasty item it will puncture you again - I know!

REPLACE TUBE - put a very small amount of air into your tube. Line the tube inside of the tire. Place the tire/tube combo over the rim such that the valve stem can be inserted back into the rim. Insert the valve and put a cap on it - this will help hold it in place while you're putting the remainder of the tire back on the rim.

TIRE ON RIM - starting from the valve point, put a hand on either side of the valve and push the tire back into the rim with each hand working its way out, or away, from the valve. Once you finished one side, flip the wheel over and do the other. Pump up the tire and go!

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