Bicycle inner tubes
Inner tubes for MTBs, road bikes, BMX bikes, touring and travel bikes
The tubes of a wheel's tyre are usually made of butyl or rubber. Tubes that are made of butyl do not heat up easily. Moreover, they are very solid against air pressure and can be produced at low cost. Latex tubes lose air more rapidly. They are lighter and have less rolling resistance, but when braking with rim brakes, they represent a potential risk because they heat up fast. There are several robust tubes for BMX, MTB, racing and trekking. Race bike tubes should be preferably lightweight, tubes for mountain biking in uneven terrain should be particularly resistant.
Do you have questions about bike tubes?
In addition to a spare inner tube and a bike pump, you usually only need a set of tyre levers to change the inner tube; you may also need tools to remove the wheel. Once the wheel has been removed, first pull the tyre off the rim:
- Deflate the tyre and press the tyre sidewalls into the centre of the rim.
- Place a tyre lever under the tyre bead and lever it over the rim flange.
- If available, proceed in the same way with a second tyre lever 10 cm further on.
- Pull the tyre lever along the rim to loosen the tyre.
Now remove the defective inner tube, feel the inside of the tyre for foreign objects and pre-shape the replacement tube a little with the air pump. Ready to be fitted:
- Bring the tyre into the centre of the rim on one side all around.
- Place the tube in the rim base starting at the valve, avoid creasing.
- Now also press the second side of the tyre into the centre of the rim – start opposite the valve.
- Use the tyre lever for the last and difficult section.
We usually distinguish between three different valve types: Presta, Schrader and Dunlop. The most important differences are clearly listed in the table.
|Designations||Use||Rim drilling||Air pressure||Advantages/disadvantages|
|Presta valve (also: |
French valve, road
|Ø 6,5 mm||up to approx. 15 bar||+ slim design |
+ pressure resistant
- prone to defects
|Schrader valve ||Mountain bikes |
|Ø 8,5 mm||up to approx. 10 bar||+ robust |
+ can be inflated at petrol stations
- not compatible with all air pumps
|Dunlop valve ||Everyday bikes |
|Ø 8,5 mm||up to approx. 6 bar||+ easy handling |
- pressure cannot be read accurately