View Full Version : Do you fix minor cuts on your tires?

04-01-2013, 07:47 PM
After my last long ride, I went through my standard post-ride check. I slowly spin each tire to look for cuts and tire wear. I then brush off any debris by spinning the tire and holding a gloved hand on the tire as it spins. This time, I noticed a minor cut. I didn't flat. (As I posted on other threads, I've never had a flat tire.) The cut is about 1/4" long and maybe 1/16 to 1/8" deep.

I was wondering if I should put something in there to repair the cut. I've found some discussions on the Web about using Super Glue or some sort of tire goo. But others said that Super Glue tends to dry out and then fall off. I also have rubber cement from a patch kit (which I have never used, except to repair a cut on a triathlon wetsuit). Would the rubber cement work?

04-02-2013, 07:43 AM
Hmm. I haven't heard of gluing cuts in tires.

When cuts or holes in the tire have cause flats, which are likely to lead to another flat soon after, I apply a park tools tire boot. They recommend that the tire boot only be used for finishing the ride, then the tire should be replaced. I've ridden for months afterward on a boot which was used to cover a minor tear caused by a piece of glass that had probably migrated over time through the tire's kevlar lining due to poor maintenance on my part. That was on 2.0" tires though, where the boot wasn't noticeable at all during riding.

04-02-2013, 07:53 AM
If I notice cuts like this I remove the tire and look to see if the cut/damage is visible on the inside of the tire (all the way through the casing). If it is, it is possible for the tube to get pinched in the cut once fully inflated (especially on high pressure tires). However, a cut the size you are talking about can be dealt with by using a tube patch on the inside of the tire, or as brendan suggested a Park boot. If the cut is not visible I wouldn't worry too much about it. Obviously if the tires are near the end of their life anyway and multiple cuts exist, time to replace those tires.

04-02-2013, 09:16 AM
I don't fix anything on my tires. If there's enough cuts that the tire should be replaced, it gets replaced.

Rod Smith
04-02-2013, 07:05 PM
The glue hardened in a sharp bit not dissimilar in shape to the sharp piece of glass that caused the cut. Not surprisingly the hard sharp piece of glue eventually wore a hole in my inner tube. When I posted of this experience in another forum, I got shot down. I've concluded that SuperGlue works great for repairing tires for everyone else but me. Try it if you like but I advise against doing so. :)

04-02-2013, 07:28 PM
The tires should have some life left on them. I don't think I've put too many miles on them, but I'll have to check. I bought them sometime last summer but I only used them for a few months (of triathlon training). Then I stopped using that bike over the winter. I only just started riding that bike again in March.

The cut is minor but I get paranoid about nicks and scrapes on tires. In any case, I guess I'll probably need to replace the tires anyway by summer (since I plan to put a lot more miles on them this spring). They are Continental GP4000 tires.

04-03-2013, 08:23 AM
I routinely repair these kinds of tire cuts with dollar bill boot. Just fold over the dollar and hold it in place while you get the tube situated in the tire. If the rest of the tire is in good shape keep riding it. I have replaced worn out tires a couple of times and had a dollar bill (dried out and crumbly) fall into my lap. You can get hundreds of miles out of a cut tire this way.

Tim Kelley
04-03-2013, 08:28 AM
When I get cuts in older tires, I retire them and burn them up as "trainer tires" during the winter months.

04-03-2013, 08:45 AM
I've been known to duct tape minor sidewall tears on my MTBs, but I don't bother with tire repair on road bikes.

04-21-2013, 07:02 PM
I decided to change the tire. I wasn't comfortable riding around on the tire with the small gash in it. The tire had plenty of life left except for that small cut. But you never know if a cut is deep enough to be a problem. I didn't want to find out.

First time I ever changed a tire myself. I've never had a flat tire. Last year, I had the bike store change the tires at the same time that they did a semi-tune-up of the bike (new chain, bike cleaning, other safety checks and adjustments). Good thing it wasn't during a race. Probably took me over half an hour since it's been a while since I took that free bike maintenance class at one of the local stores. Hopefully the next time will go more smoothly since I have a little practice now.