Most mountain bikers and bikers in general use tire insert with tubeless or tube tires Because they are massively supportive and reduce the chances of pinch flats the problem is you can still get pinch flats with tire inserts, but there are many ways to counter this problem.
And some things that you probably didn’t know already or know very little about.
So I wanted to address the questions around it because not much information is out there and if there is it’s certainly not enough.
Here are the things that you should know about or keep in mind as a precaution.
Can you ride a Flat tire with a cush core or a tire insert :
The direct answer to your question would be.
Yes, you can ride a flat tire with a cush core but you shouldn’t take it for granted and ride it every time you get a flat because it will mess up the cush core and the tire as well, a better option would be to plug the tire and let the sealant to work inserting a tube in would be same as walking home.
So yeah you can actually ride with the cush core the ride is bumpy but the dampness from cush or tire inserts does give a little bit better experience.
normally you would have sealant inside your tires and most likely the only flat you will get would be on the side walls of the tire while cush core or tire inserts do solidify the tire walls but they still are vulnerable to flats.
Plugging the tire would be a better idea than riding the cush core home if the sealant is not reaching the pinches spot then setting the bead from one spot and manually allowing the sealant to pass over the flat which you have plugged could get it to work.
I did a complete article on Tire inserts (cush core,Rim pact) and sealants everything you need to know as well if you had like to you more you can also check out that as well after you are done reading this article
but plugging the tire from outside will not make sense because under pressure the plug will slowly pull out of the tire but you can try that as well and once you plug the tire from outside let the sealant reach that point and let the sealant dry for a minute or two it should last for some time.
Cush core or the other tire inserts, in the end, are high-quality foam, and foam if left under pressure for longer periods of time will make it stiffer and expand it which would, later on, be a problem while unseating the tire or seating it.
and it will make the tire insert much less reliable because once it is compressed to a point where it can’t bounce back it’s practically another tire inside a tire which would not provide a very good experience.
The other thing would be the tire getting hammered under your and the bike weight and it will heavily damage the knobs on the tire if you go on relying on the tire insert too much.
So it’s best that you use it as a last resort and not as a commodity.
How often can you ride with a pinch flat on tire inserts (cush core) :
I would go as far as to say not to ride with a pinch flat and treat the cush core or tire insert as your secondary tire and protective armor for your tires. But that wouldn’t be a very good answer, so normally I would say.
you can ride with pinch flats on tire inserts 2 to 3 times a year i would avoid anything above that, Avoid riding your tire with a pinch flat with tire insert in it, because no matter what its still a product it costs a lot and its a subject to wear and tear and you will damage both your tire and tire insert if you ride it too often.
Can you use tubes with the cush core or tire inserts :
you can use a tube with the tire inserts in case you had a pinch flat, the cush core or tire inserts will provide you enough security on the side walls but the bed of the tire is still exposed to thorns and rocks so it won’t guarantee that you won’t get any pinch flats.
The cush core or tire inserts sit in the bed of the rim tightly and provide enough space over them that the tire store some amount of air or store a tube over them so it’s possible but that doesn’t make the tube or the tire necessarily flat-proof.
But keep in mind that with or without the tube you will have to use less amount of air pressure than you usually use which can increase the possibility of getting pinch flats more.
But usually, you will have sealant inside the tire when you are not using a tube
How to insert a spare tube with a tire insert or cush core inside it :
unseating the bead and taking the tire off can be a real pain and especially on trails where you won’t have heavy-duty things on you and it becomes harder when you have any tire insert in your tire as well, Here are some things to make the process of inserting the spare tube with an insert in it easier.
First things first you don’t actually need to take the complete tire off for just inserting the tube over the tire insert.
If you are on trails and want to insert the tube over your tire insert here are the steps to do it.
- Remove the leftover air from the tire it will make it easier to break the bead
- Break the bead with the help of your hands or feet on both sides of the tire.
- drain the sealant from the tire by twisting the tire bead
- Remove the tire and insert a specific valve or whatever valve you were using.
- Take the tube and puncture through the tire insert with the tube valve
- insert the tube with your fingers in the tire over the tire insert and spread it across the tire
- close the tire and use your mini pump or any pump that you have and fill up.
Spare tubes pressure with tire insert :
While pressure is a very debatable point for any kind of bike but for people who are new I thought maybe I could give out some pointers to not get confused.
With a tire insert the tire pressure that you use on daily basis would stay the same, although the tubes can contain more tire pressure than tubeless it would be best to use the same tire pressure for your spare tube as you have been using before.
and as the tire pressure changes based on the body weight and the width of the tire and the sweet spot for everyone but in general you can go down or up on a spare tube with or without a tire insert.
How much the tire inserts reduce the rate of getting pinch flats :
While I am no advertiser of any company or a brand but I certainly like the idea behind the whole concept and like the benefits of the tire inserts as well.
But tire inserts don’t provide a hundred guarantee of safety from the pinch flats or ver all flats in general, but they reduce the risk of getting pinch flats by 70 percent and the most beneficial part of these products is the safety on the side walls and rim protection.
Side wall flats are very common and the additional added layer from the tire inserts makes them quite sturdy but it doesn’t make them impentrable
I like these products for this aspect because the side walls of the tires are more prone to wear and tear then the tire bed when you store them for long periods of times or over all the rubber compound on side walls is really thin but an added layer of foam actually keeps that in check so its fairly a good deal over all.