Inflate bicycle tires: Which one to pressone it's right?

Regardless of whether you are cycling on mountain trails, on flat roads or on dirt roads with a gravel bike, it's likely that you've made the most common mistake among cyclists at least once: not inflating your tires correctly. Sometimes, we tend to overdo it thinking that it will increase blood pressureone of the tires will increase the speed, or there is a common misconception that tires are watertight and only lose air due to a puncture. But this is not the truth.

Having wheels as hard as marble does not necessarily mean reaching higher speeds and, for safety reasons, it is always important to check that the tires are inflated to the right pressureone, considering the rider's weight, tire width and other factors. But I don't want to spoil too many topics, so let's start from the basics:

To determine the pressureone tires, you will need a pump equipped with a pressure gauge, whether digital or analog. It is even better to use a separate pressure gauge, as many pressure gauges built into pumps read pressureone inside the pump itself rather than that of the inner tube.

The two most common units of measurement for blood pressureone they are the PSI and the bar. In the past, the atmosphere was often used as a unit of measurement in Italy, but it is now out of use. In this article we will use the PSI, but we will also provide a table of conversionsone to facilitate conversionone in bars:

Using this information, you will be able to easily find the equivalent value in bars from the PSI.

All tires, as well as many rims, have a pressure rangeone or a maximum value recommended by the manufacturer, which is indicated on the shoulder of the blanketone and/or on the rim profile. This value is expressed in PSI or bar. For safety reasons, these values ​​are often conservative, but it is still advisable to follow them carefully to avoid unpleasant inconveniences.

Cover inflation valuesone bicycle

In the absence of specific information relating to the coverone and to the circle, the pressure levels are provided belowone recommended for a cyclist weighing 70 kg:

The factors that influence the pressureone optimal bicycle tires are different, but let's look at the six main ones:

    1. Cover widthone: If the coverone is wider, a press will be requiredone inferior. This is due to the fact that you press itone it is the measure of the force exerted by a weight on a surface. Therefore, with a greater surface area (as in the case of a coveredone wider), a press will be necessaryone lower so that the coverone fits correctly into the rim.

    1. Cover carcassone: You build itone inside of the coverone, known as carcass, affects the resistance and deformability of the deckone same. A stiffer carcass will require pressingone slightly higher than a more flexible carcass.

    1. Tubeless system: In the case of a tubeless system, where the coveredone it adapts to the rim without the use of an inner tube, you press itone optimal may be slightly lower than a tube system. However, it is important to follow the manufacturer's directions for best results.

    1. Rider weight + equipment/load and its distributionone: The weight of the cyclist and the load he carries affect the pressureone of tires. A heavier rider may require a pressoone slightly higher to avoid pinching or excessive deformations. Furthermore, you distribute itone of the weight between the front and rear of the bicycle can affect the pressureone ideal tire.

    1. Plot: The type of terrain you ride on has an impact on your pressureone of tires. On technical or rough terrain, it may be necessary to reduce the pressure slightlyone to increase grip and control.

  1. Weather conditions and temperature: Weather conditions, such as temperature, can affect pressureone of tires. The air inside your tires tends to expand with heat, so you may need to adjust the pressureone based on climatic conditions.
How much to inflate MTB tires

Please remember that these are only general guidelines and that special care may be necessaryrimenter with pressureone of tires to find the one best suited to your personal needs and specific driving conditions. Always follow the blanket manufacturer's instructionsone and rim for best results.


Tires are available with different casings, such as cot onesone or with a high thread count per inch (TPI). Clinchers with a lightweight carcass and high TPI are more flexible and faster. On the other hand, clinchers with a lower TPI are heavier, stiffer and more durable, offering greater resistance to punctures. It is logical to think that a clincher with a high TPI has superior performance and greater resistance to punctures when inflated to a pressureone highest. On the other hand, a lower TPI allows you to reduce pressureone to improve grip and vibration absorption without increasing the risk of punctures.


With tubeless clinchers, it is possible to reduce pressureone of air to obtain greater grip and greater comfort without worrying about pinch punctures. Furthermore, friction between the inner tube and the blanket is avoidedone, which means that tubeless tires can reach greater speed than those with an inner tube at the same pressureone.


The weight of the cyclist and the load carried on the bike are important factors in determining the pressureone optimal tire performance. The heavier the cyclist, the greater the pressureone necessary. You can consider adding or subtracting approximately 2 PSI for every 5 kg increase or decrease in weight for road bikes, and 1 PSI for MTBs, hybrid bikes and gravel. Always remember to rimanere within the maximum and minimum range recommended by the manufacturer.

You place itone of the cyclist on the bike involves a distributionone weighing approximately 60-70% on the rear wheel. Therefore, it is advisable to reduce the pressure slightlyone of the front tire compared to the rear tire. In general, the difference in pressuresone It should be around 2-3 PSI, but this value may vary depending on your locationone in which you ride, the cycling discipline and the pedaling style.


On smooth and asphalted roads, it is possible to reach the vicinityone recommended maximum indicated on the coverone (compatible with weight). However, it is rare to find perfectly smooth and uniform roads. To avoid feeling every hole and improve efficiency and comfort, it is advisable to opt for a pressoone between 90 and 100 PSI. In this way, the coverone it will be faster and offer superior comfort, able to better absorb the roughness and vibrations of the ground, while offering greater grip when cornering.

For MTBs and gravel, the situationone becomes more complicated as the terrain can vary greatly. In this case, it is advisable to do some testing. It's best to start with a pressone higher and reduce it later, being carefulone to the sensations while driving to find the pressureone suitable for different types of terrain. The key is to find a balance between puncture resistance, grip and comfort without compromising speed.


cyclist wears fluorescent yellow cycling glasses

It is known that in case of rain it is advisable to reduce the pressure slightlyone of the tyres, but without exaggerating. Reduce pressure by 2-3 PSIone correct for your tires, your weight and the terrain you are tackling will be sufficient. A reductionone excessive pressureone it can compromise stability and reduce grip instead of improving it. Furthermore, it increases the risk of punctures, specialmind for clinchers with internal tube.

When dealing with mud, a tread pattern with tall, wide and well-spaced tread blocks is as important as it getsone of the vicinityone.

Temperature also plays an important role. Especially when there is a big difference between indoor and outdoor temperatures. The hotter it is, the more you press itone increases, and vice versa. For each variationone of 5 °C, 1 PSI is gained or lost. For example, if you inflate your tires at home to 21,1°F and be in an environment with an outside temperature of 0°F, your tires will lose approximately 4 PSI.

Five of these six factors can be considered using Sram's online calculator to find pressureone optimal tire performance.


One pressone Tire incorrectness, whether too high or too low, can compromise performance in terms of grip, comfort, rolling resistance and punctures. Since the tires are the only point of contact with the ground, performance directly affects the bike and the rider.

We have already discussed this throughout the article, but to summarize, here are the advantages and disadvantages of using a pressoone low or high:

Depressone low


  • Better trazione
  • Greater adhesion
  • Greater comfort
  • Less rolling resistance on uneven terrain


  • Greater probability of pinch punctures with tires and inner tubes
  • Increased wear
  • Greater rolling resistance on asphalt and smooth terrain

Depressone high


  • Less chance of punctures
  • Less wear
  • Less rolling resistance on asphalt or smooth terrain


  • Less grip and tractionone
  • Less comfort
  • Energy loss on uneven terrain

Every cyclist must find the vicinityone optimal and try to balance grip, comfort, rolling resistance and punctures. If you prioritize one aspect, you will lose out on another. Even though tires, rims and cycling equipment in general are continually evolving, offering performances that were unthinkable until a few years ago, the pressureone of tires rimis still an important element. Each of us can and should sperimcome with different pressures in different circumstances. You learn by trying, because air is free.

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