You know you need them, first thing you should realize is not all tires are created equal. Selecting the right tire for your commute or tour will greatly enhance your experience and performance. If you follow some basic guidelines you can be sure you get what is best for you and your bike on your daily commute or tour. The tire selection is vast and with lots of options and things to take into consideration you need to narrow your search, hopefully we can help narrow your options.
Modern tires can last up to 3000 miles and greatly reduce your chances of getting a flat. Choosing the proper tire for your commute will ensure your ride is enjoyable, comfortable and relatively trouble free. You will usually get what you spend, good tire are not cheap... just like car tires. Making an investment in a nice tire usually will mean less frustration on the side of the road changing flats and equals a more enjoyable ride.
On your commute or tour, what are the surfaces like? Are they easy maintained Bike paths or harden torn apart street roads? A smoother tire will roll easier on a flat surface and a Knobby tire will help you roll over the destroyed street roads.
When you're bike touring you need to be prepared single or multi-day trips, even months you need a tires that will go above and beyond. The Trekking/Touring tires are built to last and ready for high mileage. if you plan on Credit-Card Touring or Expedition Touring around the world we have the tires you need to get you there. Touring tires are built with Speed, Grip, Protection and Durability. Speed: You'll need speed to keep your bike and you rolling forward while keeping the weight down. Grip: A feature to help you navigate heavy terrains and technical trails. keeping you good in the wet, Off-road and winter riding.
When do I need new tires?
When you're getting more flats than you're used too. Shape (flat spots or tears). Texture (dry rot or flaking) or when you changing seasons or terrain.
Types of Tires
Tires with tubes (Traditional)
Tubeless Tires- used more off road now, but finding a place in day to day commuting. More puncture resistance, but more up front costs and work to make the conversion. Special tires are needed and are more expensive.
Dimensions 20" (BMX, Recumbent, Bike Trailer) 26" (Mountain Bike, Cruiser, Hybrid) 700c (Road Bike, Cyclocross, Hybrid) 29" (Mountain Bike)
Width 20" (1.5"-2.125") 26" (1.5"-2.125) 700c (20c-25c Road Racing 25c-32c Touring Commuting) 29" (1.5"-2.125)
Tread Slicks- City Commuters, smooth roads, low rolling resistance Semi Slicks- Slick center with knobbies on side to aid in corner on looser terrain Inverted Tread- Lower rolling resistance than tires with tread, but roll nicely on road and provide more traction than Slicks on dirt or really rough roads Knobbies- Off road, dirt, rocky, muddy terrain
Threads Per Inch (TPI) Higher TPI- Best for racing, higher pressure, greater puncture resistance Lower TPI- Lower pressure, smoother ride, less puncture resistance
Bead -Folding Lighter, more expensive, easier storage, harder to mount Wire- Heavier, less expensive, eaters to mount
Sub-Tread Not all tires have sub-treads. They're a common feature on tires designed with additional puncture protection. For example, an additional Kevlar or nylon layer will be placed in the tire beneath the tread to stop sharp objects from being able to puncture the tube. Tires equipped with protective sub-treads will be labeled as such.
Directional Tires- Some tires are directional and front or rear specific.