Tire fit/install: Many different things can impact tire fit aside from the tire itself. Ideally, no tire levers are needed to get a tire on but that is not always the case depending on a number of factors.
- First and most importantly, make sure you are following proper general tire install procedure: Get one bead fully seated and sitting in the deepest part of the rim well before moving onto the next bead. With the next bead, you want to start from the end opposite to the valve and work your way around towards the valve. Along the way, ensure that the tire beads are sitting in the deepest part of the rim well - this is really important as it creates more leeway for the bead sections not yet seated. The last section to seat should be right at the valve. Because the valve head prevents the bead from sitting deep in the rim well, finishing the seating process at the valve is important for tough fitting tires.
- Following the above procedure allows tire installs to be performed without tire levers in most cases.
- Rim tape and number of wraps can play a big role in tire fit due to the fact that it builds up the OD of the rim well. This often comes into play when people use thicker tapes (such as gorilla tape) or are using excess number of wraps around the rim. e*thirteen tape is very thin and we recommend 2 full wraps around the rim. We spec a double layer of adhesive which easily compresses aiding tire install.
New vs preinstalled tires
- In general, tires which have already been installed will be easier to get on a rim. This is due to casing stretch. New tires can also have that grippy rubber feel at the bead which can make it tougher push over the rim. Sometimes lubricating the tire with some sealant on the inner part of the bead can assist with this.
- New tires also tend to be a bit stiffer and less malleable. Try leaving your tire in the hot sun for a 10 minutes before install. This can help alleviate the stiffness which can be inherent in heavier duty casing tires.
Rim design and impact
- Sometimes the problem is the rim and not the tire. Controlling tire bead sizing is much easier than controlling rim sizing. It's possible that it's not a tire issue and that a rim is slightly oversized which is contributing to the install difficulties.
- Additionally, rims lacking a deeper inner channel where the tire bead can sit during the final portion of the install can also result in tires being a bit trickier to get on.