28. How to Use a Presta Valve Adapter

Learn how to use a presta valve adapter to inflate your tire using a regular air pump.

IMPORTANT: Nuts and bolts on your bike should always be tightened to the manufacturer's specifications.
How to Use a Presta Valve Adapter
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VIDEO UPDATES

  • 01:08 - Many hand-held air pumps have a built-in presta valve adapter.
  • 01:21 - PSI = Pounds per Square Inch.

The two most common valve types these days are Presta valves and Schrader valves. Schrader valves are most commonly found on bikes with wide rims and are the same style you’ll find on most automobiles. They use an internal spring to allow inflation while keeping the valve closed. You can inflate this style easily with any regular air pump.

Presta valves are a lot narrower and are commonly found on higher end bikes with narrow rims. They are a little trickier to inflate as they use a manual locknut to open the valve for inflation. To inflate a Presta valve you’ll need a regular air pump and a special adapter. These can be purchased for about a dollar at your local bike shop. In this tutorial, we’ll learn how to use the adapter to inflate your tire.

The first step is to remove the cap and then loosen the valve’s locknut all the way counter-clockwise. Notice that you can now let air out by depressing the locknut.

Now install the adapter by carefully threading it clockwise onto the valve stem’s threads. The adapter effectively converts your Presta valve to a Schrader valve so that you can use a traditional air pump to inflate it. Attach your air pump and inflate the tire to the recommended pressure. This is written on your sidewall and is usually marked with a ‘PSI’ rating (pounds per square inch).

Once the tire is fully inflated, remove the air pump, remove the adapter, and finger tighten the locknut. Then replace the cap. There is another locknut at the bottom of the valve stem. This should be finger-tightened once the tire is inflated.

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04/14 Presta valve broken

While removing the pump head after pumping, the presta valve got broken. I then reinserted the pump to check whether it can sill be pumped, and all of a sudden the remaining needle is lost ( might have gone inside the tube). Is there any way to fix it without changing the whole tube?

And if I need to change the tube, then what would be the tube size? My bike is Giant OCR3 2009 model.

[Image: 20140413_153009.jpg]... Read more >>

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Hi,
When I was younger, I only had a bike till I was25. I am trying to get back into biking again. I bought a vilano performance hybrid roadbike and it came with 700 x 28c tires with presta valves. Now, its been a long time, but what was wrong with schreider valves ? Anyway, I know tubes loose air pressure over time, but I only rode the bike In the parking lot once to see how the adjustments were, one week later, I went to ride the bike, and both tires were completely empty, I pumped them back up to 85 psi, and a week later they were completely empty, I tightened the nuts after and rep... Read more >>

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Apologies if this question has been answered previously, I only had a quick look around before I asked.

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I'm looking to order a new front rim online to save a few bucks but it's a little difficult to choose the correct size. Ideally, I'd like to order the same size rim, or at least one for which I can still use the old tube and tire.

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10/11 Oversized inner tube?

I purchased a road bike that is a lemon I'm afraid.

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