Cycling Emergencies: Roadside maintenance tips and advice

1. Be able to change and repair an inner tube

Inserting a new inner tube

One of those most annoying things about people who’ve been riding longer than you is when they skim over the details of puncture repair cause it’s ‘sooooo simple’.

That’s the kind of talk that stops people from asking how to change an inner tube for fear of embarrassment, and results in you being tearful on a kerb.

In reality it is an easy thing to do, but it requires a little bit of practice. We recommend having a couple of trial runs at home so things will be smooth and effortless in the thunderstorm that God saw fit to let you get a puncture in.

  • The first step is to read our ‘How to: Change an Inner Tube’ article, which includes a helpful video and step-by-step breakdown of the process.
  • The second step is to prepare your always-on-you maintenance kit: ensure that you are always carrying tyre levers, a multitool, a new inner tube and a pump. And keep a couple of quid on you, just in case you need to buy something.
  • If you’ve hit something pretty epic and managed to rip your tyre open, don’t panic. Try and use something like a biscuit wrapper to plug the hole until you get home.
  • Didn’t bring a tube? Or there’s a hole in your spare one? (Remember to check your spare for holes, ladies!) Time to get out your puncture repair kit and learn how to repair an inner tube using our guide.


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