Tool kit in black frame corner bag


So that you can be prepared to diagnose and repair a flat tire, it is important that you first equip yourself for the task. In this first lesson, you will learn about the tools you will need to repair a flat bicycle tire. Recommendations are made about selecting these tools, and keeping them with you on your bike is also recommended.

A few specialized tools are needed to fix a flat tire on a bicycle. These include:

Tire levers

These help you remove the tire from the rim of the bike. While you may think, "Why not use a flat-head screwdriver?" tire levers are specially designed for this task. The edge that you insert into the rim is blunt, so you do not do more damage to the rim, tire or tube. Most tire levers also have a hook on the other end, to hook to a spoke. Tire levers come in a few varieties, and most often you will need two. Using tire levers will be covered later in Making the Repair.

Flat tire patch kit with glue
Roll your mouse over the patch kit to see what is inside.

Patch kit

Patch kits typically include patches, glue (if not self-adhesive patches), and either sandpaper or a small metal rasp. This is for roughing the surface of the tube, to make the glue adhere better. You may even have instructions in the kit--even if you do, finishing this tutorial is recommended.

This is the most handy way to buy, as well as store, you tube patching supplies. Patch kits and their contents come in a variety of styles, from a variety of manufacturers.

If your kit does not come with a small piece of chalk or bright crayon, you should add one yourself. Either one will help you to mark a puncture site on your tire and tube.

©2004 Mark J. Smith
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More tool descriptions on the next page.
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