If you have landed on this article then there are high chances that you are a biker. When passing through gas stations you may have noticed that some bikers stop and fill up their tires with air there. So, is it possible to put air in bike tires at a gas station? Well, the short answer would be yes, but it’s not that simple, which is why we are going to give you a demonstration on how to put air in bike tires at a gas station.
There are a few complications that come with pumping your bike tires at a gas station. We will be discussing all that and more in this article in detail!
Difficulties with Pumping Bike Tires at Gas Station
Air compressors in gas stations are used to put air in the bike tires, but these air compressors do not work as simply as manual bike pumps that are generally used. You must be very cautious when using these air compressors, and you must be constantly looking at your tires so they do not pop. If you are not very careful you might get a flat tire instead of a full tire!
This risk arises because you have no way of knowing exactly how much air you are putting into the tire with each trigger, so you have to rely on the appearance of the tire to guess how much tire has gone inside.
How to Put Air in Bike Tires at Gas Station
The process of inflating the tires varies depend on the kind of valve your bike may have. Therefore, before inflating your tires you must know which type of valve your bike has. There are two types of valves in bikes, Presta valves, and Schrader valves. Let’s get to know about both the process here.
Putting Air in Bike Tires with Presta Valves
Since cars have Schrader valves the hoses in gas stations will be suitable for Schrader valves only. If you HAVE to pump your tires your tires at a gas station, then you have to buy an adapter for the Presta valve of your bike as well as the air nozzle. Keep in mind that you will not find this adapter at most gas stations so you will have to carry this adapter with you at all times which can be an inconvenience.
These adapters generally work quite well and simply since they provide a decent seal. Additionally, these adapters are not expensive so you will not have to waste a lot of your coins. In fact, durable and sturdy adapters can be found for under 10 USD.
To start, if your Presta valve has a dust cap you will have to unscrew it. Then, link the adapter to the valve after making the nut loose. After that, you will have to connect the nozzle of the air hose, and then you can start to inflate your tire. Once you are done, you will have to tighten the nut you have loosened, and finally, screw back the dust cap.
Putting Air in with Schrader Valves
As we have mentioned before, cars have Schrader valves so if your bike has a Schrader valve your life just automatically becomes easier. You don’t need any adapters so the process is simpler, but it isn’t really too different from what you have to do with a Presta valve.
Firstly, you will have to unscrew the dust cap of the valve. Then, the nozzle should be tightly attached to the Schrader valve of the tire. After that, you can start inflating your tire. Remember, to constantly check your tire when inflating it and pump the air in slowly so you don’t risk popping the tire. You can put air into the tires in short bursts. This will allow you to maximize control, and minimize the risks of getting a flat tire.
Lastly, you will have to screw the dust cap back to cover the Schrader valve, and then you should have a healthy tire. Remember that, you’ll need to be a bit careful during the process if your bike has the single-speed conversion kit.
How Much Does it Cost to Put Air in Bike Tires?
Getting your tires pumped at a gas station is certainly not free and will cost you a decent amount of money because you are using the station’s resources. The cost varies depending on the station as well as the pressure in your tires, but typically proper pomp will set you back approximately 20 USD. On the other hand, if you have to deal with just a single flat tire it will probably cost you less than 5 USD.
Where can I Pump my Bike Tires for Free?
There are a few ways you may pump your bike tires for free, one of them is getting your own pump. While that pump may not be actually free because you have to invest money initially, but with regular use, you will make the purchase very much worth the money.
One absolutely free way of pumping your bike tires is going to a bike shop and getting it properly inflated. Most bike shops will allow you to use their pump as a form of building a good relationship with their customers. So, if you happen to live just by a bike shop you will not have to spend a dime on pumping your tires.
Whenever you are riding your bike it’s nice to have properly pumped tires for the best experience. Hopefully, now after going through the details of our how to put air in bike tires at a gas station if you are passing by one with deflated tires you will not be clueless! It is always best to stay prepared for everything, so if your bike has a Presta valve we would advise you to keep an adapter with you in case of an emergency. Keep your tires pumped, wear your helmet, and always maintain the speed limit. Happy riding everyone!