As an e-bike owner, there is a high possibility that you have had a flat tire at some point, regardless of how cautiously you choose your electric bike tires. It can be frustrating, but you would bother less if you knew something about fixing a flat ebike tire. Even though you can never be too careful, there are specific measures you can take.
Before going out for a ride, you should check your ebike thoroughly. Checking brakes, lights, and most especially the tires can save you the stress of dealing with a flat tire on the streets. Dirt and sharp objects on the path to your destination are some of the causes of flat tires. While this is not entirely sustainable, it can help avoid major punctures in your ebike tire.
If you find yourself with a flat even after being extra careful, follow these steps to get it fixed:
Step 1: Turn off your ebike
It’s safer to begin by turning off your ebike and taking out the battery from the compartment. This safety measure ensures the ebike remains immobile and off while you work to fix the flat tire. Turning it upside down to make it rests squarely on the ground can help you reach the tires better. If you have the luxury of getting clothing with a soft fabric to lay on the floor first, that would be perfect. This helps to avoid scratches on the seat and handlebars on which the bike would lay. Ensure you flip the mirrors and other accessories that could get damaged while resting on the electric bicycle.
Step 2: Remove the tire
If you have rim brakes, open them up to ensure they don’t interfere with the tire. If yours is a disc brake, then you are good to go. You can loosen the nuts on both sides of the hub motor until the nuts are loose enough to drop off or be pulled out. The idea is to remove any part that could get in the way of the tire or rim. It may be the torque arm on the motor, the connector on the hub motor, or some cable knot that holds the motor wire to the frame. Remove as many obstructions as possible. After these are gone, you can gently pull the wheel out of the bike, and the rest would be a ride in the park.
Step 3: Get a new tube
It is improbable that you would have an extra tire tube when your tire goes flat. You can purchase one from the nearest automobile store. Be sure to buy the correct tube size and shape, as electric bike tires come in different sizes. This, in turn, affects their strength, weaknesses, and the general performance of the tire. You would then need to inflate this tube with a small amount of air, just enough to make it easy to hold and stretch.
Step 4: Check for the cause of the rupture
Your old tube did not rupture on its own accord. Therefore, you should trace the cause, so it doesn’t affect the new tire tube. Check the inner part of the ebike tire for sharp objects like thorns, nails, broken glass, etc. Be careful not to hurt yourself in the process. This is probably the most crucial step because skipping it could cost you a new tube and the rigor of repeating all the steps.
Step 5: Install the tube
Place the new tube between the axle and the frame by lifting the wheel and simultaneously pulling out the deflated tube. Some people would just cut out the old tube to save themselves the stress – you can choose whichever method rocks your boat. With the wheel lifted and the old tire out, pick the new one and place it between the axle and the frame. Since the tube is flexible, you can twist and squeeze it to fit the space available. Remember to leave enough room around so that it would not get squeezed up when you finally lower the motor back into the dropouts.
Step 6: Inflate the ebike tire
Gently lower the motor into the dropouts and adjust the axle flats with an adjustable wrench if it doesn’t align perfectly. You can use the wrench to rock the axle back and forth until it sits perfectly on the dropouts. With this done, you want to fix the new tube into the tire and put the new valve stem through the frame. If your ebike has a tire bead, you must have taken it out earlier. It is time to replace it in the frame on both sides carefully. It’s now time to inflate the tire until it gets to the recommended PSI, which is usually above 20 PSI. If you are not sure, you can check the side of the tire to know the PSI range of the tire.
Step 7: Turn on your ebike and ride on
Once your wheels properly align with the tire in the right direction, you can close the axle nuts and brakes. Flip over your bike to keep it uptight; replace your battery and turn it on. With your eyes, you can tell if everything looks good, and when you ride your ebike, you can spot any abnormal movement, sound, or feeling. If you notice any abnormalities, try to trace the step you missed or didn’t fix properly and correct it. Don’t hesitate to contact an expert if you aren’t sure what to do next.
You can refer to this article whenever you need to change a flat tire. It’s okay not to get all the steps on your first try. Even experts must have had a rough start too. The more you fix flat tires, the better you become at it, and in no time, you should be able to change your flat yourself. Again, these steps should come in handy as a last resort. You can avoid flat tires if you take proper checks and preventions from the onset. However, if you own a commuter bike, there is a high chance that you would change flats a couple of times while commuting. Regardless, KBO bikes offer luxury electric bikes with durable tires that stand the test of time.