How to Choose the Best Bike Pumps
This may not be the most exiting subject, but keeping your tyres inflated is pretty important. Choosing the best bike pumps is will ensure that you have the optimum amount of air in your tyres. This is essential before you go out on a ride and while out on the trails. There are a lot of bike pumps to choose from, so here is my guide to choosing the best bike pumps.
These are the best bike pumps to keep in the garage or car. Their large volume and ergonomics make them fast and easy to pump up your tyres. If you are converting your tyres to tubeless, these are the bare minimum you need to get the required volume of air in to the tyre.
They are too big to stuff in your back pack, so you will also want a mini pump.
Mini pumps are the best bike pumps for out on the trail. They are for emergencies when you get a flat tyre, or you just feel that you need to adjust the tyre pressure to suit the terrain you are riding. However, you won’t be able to pump the pressure up as high as a track pump. But, they will be sufficient for most riders.
Some mini pumps are more “mini” than others. The best ones will have an extendable tube that extends from the pump. This is useful, as it reduces the chance of you snapping your valve.
You can also inflate your tyres with a CO2 canister. This allows you to inflate your tyre very quickly and to a high pressure, which is ideal for when you go tubeless. However, you can only use each canister once, therefore, you will need to take a few with you, in the event of multiple punctures.
Air Blast Pump
The air blast type pump is a great way of pumping up your tyres. In my opinion, this is one of the best bike pumps. These work just like a track pump, but instead of pumping up the tyre, you build pressure up in a separate chamber. Once it is up to pressure, you release the air in to the tyre in a shot. This is great for setting up tubeless tyres, without wasting CO2 canisters if it doesn’t work first time.
If you have a bit of cash and garage space, you could buy any air compressor. However, this is a bit overkill unless you have a race team. And if you do have a race team, you wouldn’t be reading this.
The volume of a bike pump refers to the amount of air it can pump in to a tyre with each stroke. Track pumps have a higher volume, but you shouldn’t think that just because a pump is big, it pumps more air. This is because cheap pumps are not made as well as more expensive ones, and are not as efficient. Using more efficient pumps will mean that it won’t take as long to pump up your tyre, which is beneficial after a puncture on the trail (especially in the rain).
The best bike pumps are designed well enough to make them better to use. For example, if the handle feels cheap and nasty, or the valve attachment is awkward, you will get frustrated with it.
The best bike pumps will have a pressure gauge. You are more likely to find these on track pumps, rather than mini pumps. They are useful to tweak your tyre pressures to suit the terrain you are riding. However, in my experience, the built in pressure gauges are not particularly accurate, unless you pay more money. Therefore, you can buy a digital pressure gauge. These are really cheap and small enough to put in your back pack.
Pumps are not exactly heavy things, however, the best bike pumps are light, so they don’t contribute significantly to cumulative weight to your back pack. This doesn’t really matter for track pumps, as they are rarely carried anywhere.
There are two types of valves, Presta and Schreader. The best bike pumps will have an attachment for both, and be able to connect to them without exerting stress. This is because it is very easy to damage or snap a valve, and this is not good when you are miles from home.
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Now you know how to choose the best bike pumps
Using this information, you should be able to buy the best bike pump for your ride or garage. Do you think you have a better pump? Let me know in the comments section below.
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