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06-10-2023 | Frank Jansen

5 Pro tips for tubeless

The surge of tubeless popularity on the road continues its steady ascent. As even pros embrace this trend, an increasing number of road cyclists  are also taking the leap. This shift is evident on our site, where our articles on tubeless cycling consistently rank among the most-read pieces.

By now, I consider myself somewhat of an expert, having successfully installed at least fifty wheel sets with tubeless tires. There is hardly a problem that I haven't encountered. Here are my five best pro tips.

Photo: A Dynaplug is indispensable on the road. © Van Speyk Wheels

Tip 1: Pay attention to your valves

One drawback of tubeless is the potential for sealant to clog the valves, causing inflation issues. Prevention is better than cure! Ensure your valves are positioned at 4 or 8 o'clock when storing the bike in the garage. Gravity ensures the sealant never stays in the valves.

Tip 2: Replace the valve cores during a tire change

No matter how well-maintained, valve cores don't last forever. Sometimes they get clogged with sealant. Instead of cleaning, I prefer replacing the cores during a tire change. It's cost-effective, and you can buy them cheaply in dozens from Ali or Temu.

Photo: Valve cores are very inexpensive.

Tip 3: The practical way to check sealant levels

The most common question about tubeless is: how often should I refill the sealant? The answer depends on numerous factors. A practical alternative is using a syringe with a thin nozzle. Set the valve at 6 o'clock, take out the core, and measure the remaining sealant. Top up as needed and inject it back the same way.

For an even simpler approach, add 20 ml of sealant when you notice increased pressure loss and always add 20 ml after a puncture.

Tip 4: Choose a TPU inner tube

While tubeless reduces punctures, it's not foolproof. Carrying a plug is standard, but opt for a small TPU inner tube from Ali or other brands like Tubulito, Schwalbe or Pirelli. It's equally effective and saves space.

Also read: Dynaplug Racer and Racer Pro review

Photo: A TPU inner tube saves a lot of space. © Van Speyk Wheels

Tip 5: Use a bucket for perfect sealing

A common issue with tubeless is poor air retention in some tires. Instead of adding more sealant, try this simple solution. After a short ride (5 km is enough), lay the wheel flat on a bucket for a few hours. Turning it occasionally allows the sealant to penetrate the tire walls, significantly improving airtightness.

Thanks to Van Speyk Wheels.

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