Tubeless Tires: Advantages and Disadvantages

Tubeless tires: advantages and disadvantages of tubeless tires

According to some bicycle tire manufacturers, tubeless is the tire technology of the future. Balance bikes without tubes are particularly suitable for ambitious cyclists. We introduce the tubeless tires.

What are tubeless tires?

Tubeless tires are bicycle tires with air but without a tube. Tubeless technology for bicycles emerged from the methodology that has been used in motorcycle tires for over 30 years and even in car tires for over 60 years. Developing tubeless tires for bicycles was more of a challenge because the bicycle tires are very delicately constructed and therefore essential more susceptible to damage through external influences.

However, well-known manufacturers such as Nexo and Schwalbe saw the advantages of tires without tubes. They therefore developed tubeless systems, which are now often referred to as mountain bike tires are used.

The tubeless bikes are very simple. The tubeless wheels usually have the properties of folding tires or clincher tires on. They form one together with the rim tight air chamber. In order to keep the air in the tire better, it often has a very special shape. A rim tape that is glued to the bottom of the rim seals the tire and prevents air from escaping through the holes for the spokes. A special tubeless valve prevents air from flowing out through the hole for the valve.

Depending on factors such as the weight of the driver and road conditions tubeless tires normally one air pressure from 1.8 bar to 1.9 bar. The maximum air pressure for tires without tubes is 4 bar.

Advantages of a tubeless tire

Compared to tubular tires, tubeless tires have a number of useful properties:

  • Lower rolling resistance as there is no friction between the tire and the surface
  • Less weight due to the absence of the hose
  • Driving with lower air pressure is possible without any major risk of damage
  • More grip and a better driving experience due to low air pressure
  • Tubeless tires repair themselves in the event of minor damage using the sealant
  • No bursting hoses and tearing of the valve and so on free from glitches

Disadvantages of tubeless tires

Of course, the tubeless system also has a few disadvantages compared to other bicycle tires:

  • Special rims and components are necessary
  • Mounting and replacing tires is more complex and requires a lot of technical skill
  • Regular filling up the sealing milk to avoid getting stuck while driving
  • Larger obstacles can damage the rim flange if they break through due to low air pressure
  • If a tubeless tire slips off the rim flange and loses air, that’s it Inflate Often only possible with a compressed air compressor or a special hand pump with a pressure reservoir

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Sealing milk for tubeless tires

However, conventional tire casings are rarely completely airtight. That’s why tubeless tires must have a special one Latex emulsion be filled. This emulsion is known colloquially as sealing milk or tubeless milk known. It independently seals smaller holes and cuts that are not completely covered by the internal rim tape.

This milk is available in different versions for holes of different sizes or specifically for sealing cuts. It’s definitely worth comparing before making a purchase because there are clear differences in quality.

Refill condensed milk regularly

Since the milk in the tire dries up over time and so their effect loses, you should refill regularly. Use a needle to check whether there is still active milk in the tire. Poke a hole in the tread and rotate the tire. The hole usually compacts again immediately. If that doesn’t happen, you have to Refill sealing milk. The fresh emulsion closes the hole again.

If the extra weight of the milk doesn’t bother you, you can always take extra before a longer tour or before a competition tubeless milk add. You can then use a tubeless pump or a tire booster to inflate the tire again until the desired air pressure is reached.

Mount tubeless tires yourself?

Are you thinking about converting your bike tires to tubeless? Not all tires can be converted to this system. One tubeless bicycle tires consists of a combination of individual components, all of which must be compatible with one another. A tubeless tires For example, it is not suitable for all types of rims.

Therefore, before assembling, find out whether one compatibility of all individual parts is available and the rims are actually tubeless-capable or tubeless-ready. Converting normal rims to tubeless rims is only recommended for real hobbyists. In addition, this is also the case assembly of tubeless tires not so easy to do.

If you need several attempts, that’s no problem. There are currently still a lack of standards on the market for tires without tubes, so each manufacturer develops their own products. This is a challenge for cyclists who repair or convert their own bikes.

The lack of standards means that components have to fit together. This starts with the rim and also applies to the rim tape. These bike parts must tubeless ready because only with the right tubeless rim tape can the rim be sealed in an airtight manner.

For the conversion to a tubeless system, a tubeless kit is suitable. A kit for tubeless tires contains valves, sealing milk and fluid for assembly. After application, the liquid substance forms a lubricating film, making it easier to put the tire over the rim when installing tubeless.

Does it make sense to convert to tubeless tires?

To avoid punctures, tubeless tires are almost unbeatable. Tubeless riders especially swear by them MTB tires on the system. When driving off-road with lots of debris on the paths often defects on. These can be done with tires without tubes minimize mishaps.

As is often the case, whether a tubeless system is right for you is an individual decision. A good driving experience, fewer punctures and low rolling resistance are convincing arguments for new tires. In our online shop you will find a large selection of tubeless solid rubber tires from NEXO.

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