Flat Tires – Patch Inner Tube
A flat tire usually means that the inner tube – the tube inside the outer tire that holds the air – has a hole. Congratulations! You’re one of millions.
You have two options: replace the tube with a new one, or patch the hole.
Because finding and patching a hole is a little harder, it’s easier to replace the tube with the spare first and patch the hole later.
Patch Inner Tube
- Patch kit (glue or no glue)
- Locate Puncture
If possible, re-inflate inner tube to at least twice its normal width. Inspect for leaks by holding tube close to the skin lips or by holding tube near your ear to hear leaks. Move the tube around its circumference. You can also, submerge tube in water – bubbles will indicate a hole.
- Mark Puncture
Make four marks with a permanent pen, one to each side of hole. Do not mark close to hole, as the mark may be sanded off.
- Prepare Tube
Clean the tube by lightly sanding the area around hole. Don’t sand too hard as it can cause grooves in the rubber and lead to patch failure. Clean with rag and alcohol (or solvent that doesn’t leave a film). Allow the area to dry completely.
- Patch (no glue)
Peel patch from patch backing. Touch as little as possible and by the edges only.
Center the patch to hole and lay it on the tube.
Apply pressure to seal. Roll the patch and tube between your thumbs and forefingers.
DO NOT inflate tube outside the outer tire – this stretches tube and weakens the patch.
- Patch (with glue)
Apply a thin coat of glue with fingers or the back of the patch. Spread evenly around the hole area – the glue should cover an area that it is larger than the patch.
Allow to dry. Test by touching the edges,, not where patch will contact
Remove patchbacking. Handle patch only by edges. Center the patch over the hole and press it over the tube. Apply pressure, especially around edges. Press for a few minutes.
Inspect the bond making sure that all edges are glued tightly
- Mount Inner Tire
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