The monsoons have arrived and there, you have the perfect weather for a refreshing bike ride. But if you primarily use your bike for commuting to and from work, then maybe this season is not your favorite time of the year. In either case, you must ensure proper tyre care during the monsoons. The tyres take care of your safety, so you need to take care of them too.
First, let's find out why is it essential to be extra cautious during the monsoons. Shouldn't one examine their bike tyres all year round? Yes, but you should pay special attention to them during the monsoon as these months have fluctuating temperatures.
Since it is the tyres that come in constant contact with the roads, they are the ones that bear the maximum brunt of seasonal fluctuations, especially during the rains. Problems like waterlogged roadways, slippery surfaces, potholed roads, etc can plague your smooth bike rides. But with well-maintained tyres, you will be able to counter all these challenges effortlessly and safely.
Remember this simple tip: A tyre which is well cared and maintained for, will always ensure maximum grip and stability for your bike.
So what's the first step in tyre care?
- Examine your bike tyres.
→ The first thing you must do is to examine the condition of your bike tyres. A lot depends on the level of the tyre’s grip on the surface. For maximum tyre grip, there must be enough grooves on the tread area.
→ If you find that the grooves have worn out, switch to new tyres instantly. (Even if you think you can still cover a hundred more kilometers with the remaining tread depth.)
→ The tread depth should be at least 2-3 mm to provide you with the necessary hold over the surface. Every tyre comes with a Tread Wear Indicator or TWI mark which aids in tracking the tread usage. If you find the tread depth below the TWI mark, the tyre is unsafe to ride. The rainy season is generally humid, hence you need adequate tread for traction and sufficient water channeling to prevent skidding.
What is a TWI mark and where can I find it?
A Tread Wear Indicator (TWI) is a visual mark that indicates to the user how much of the tyre tread has worn out. A TWI mark is generally located on either of the following two sections of a tyre:
a) On the shoulder of the tyre where it looks like a small ‘triangle mark.’
b) At the bottom of the grooves of the tread pattern where it appears as a small raised area.
Choosing the right monsoon bike tyres
- If you have to replace your bike tyre before the monsoons, opt for the best tyre grip. The right bike tyre for the rainy season should feature a groovy tread pattern along with a quality rubber compound.
- The tread with high groove density will keep your bike from skidding. At the same time, the compound will aid in superior grip and stable performance during wet weather.
- But remember to pick the tyre size as recommended by the vehicle manufacturer to avoid any risk of mishandling or underperformance.
Look at CEAT's top grip tyres for bikes here. You can also head to your nearest CEAT Shoppe for reliable and safe tyre replacement.
Don't take step two lightly!
2. Check the tyre pressure.
→ For optimum performance during the monsoon, maintaining adequate tyre pressure is a must. Generally, you should retain the tyre pressure as advised by the motorcycle manufacturer. However, during rains as temperature swings (dry/hot), you may inflate the tyres 2-3 PSI less than the required level.
→ Under hot conditions, the tyre swells up. Hence, the air pressure should be kept lower to account for the heat build-up inside the tyre. Whereas, during the rainy season, tyres usually run cool and contract a bit, hence the pressure must be kept high.
→ However, make sure that the tyre is not over-inflated in any case. This can adversely affect its handling and maneuverability.
If you're not sure how to go about this step, head to your nearest CEAT authorized tyre shop for the most reliable tyre care.
Trust the professionals for step three.
3. Repair a damaged tyre immediately.
→ Most bikers today use tubeless bike tyres. In case of a puncture, tubeless tyres deflate gradually unlike tube tyres which flatten out faster. Despite being aware of the situation, most riders tend to ignore it and continue riding long distances on the damaged tyre.
→ Riding while a sharp object is still lodged in the tyre, damages it further. So, as soon you discover that the tyre has been pierced, get it repaired at the nearest tyre repair shop.
So there you have it, folks! With these tips, bike tyre maintenance is made easy and effortless. The proper upkeep of the tyre ensures safety and promotes long tyre life and durability. A quick glance at your tyre every fortnight can do wonders for the performance of your bike. And while you're at it, remember to enjoy the rains too!