Tubeless type puncture repair for scooters and bikes: How to quick fix during emergency
Article by Drivio | 20th Feb 23
Tubeless technology has transformed the way we ride, both on and off the road, but it is not without flaws. The sealant used in tubeless tyre setups is intended to quickly plug small holes, often without your knowledge.
The good news is that you can repair a tubeless type puncture yourself in an emergency with the right tools and some knowledge. However, depending on the size or location of the puncture, more than sealant may be required to repair it.
We'll walk you through the steps you need to take to get back on the road in this article.
What tools are required to repair a tubeless puncture?
You will require the following tools:
- Tyre patch kit
- A portable type inflator or a can of compressed air
- To remove the puncture object, use pliers or a sharp tool.
- To locate the puncture, use soap and water.
- A jack or stand for lifting the bike/scooter (optional)
Repairing a Tubeless tyre puncture on a bike or scooter
Step 1: Find the puncture
The first step is to find the hole in your tyre. Pour some soap and water onto the tyre and look for bubbles that indicate air escaping from the puncture. Mark the location with chalk or a marker.
Step 2: Remove the object that caused the puncture
Once you've located the puncture, remove the object that caused it with pliers or a sharp tool, such as a nail or a piece of glass. Take care not to enlarge the hole or further damage the tyre.
Step 3: Put in the repair plug
Take the repair kit and insert the rubber plug into the insertion tool's eye. Insert the tool into the puncture hole, lubricating it with the provided solution, until only about half an inch of the plug remains outside the tyre. Pull the tool out while leaving the plug inside the tyre.
Step 4: Remove the plug
Cut the excess plug with the repair kit's blade so that it is flush with the tyre. Take care not to damage the tyre.
Step 5: Fill the tyre with air
Inflate the tyre to the recommended pressure with a can of compressed air or a portable tyre inflator. This information can be found on the tyre sidewall or in the owner's manual for your bike or scooter.
Step 6: Examine the seal
Check the seal after inflating the tyre by pouring soap and water over the repaired area and looking for bubbles. If no bubbles appear, the repair was successful, and you can ride the bike/scooter again. If there are bubbles, the repair was unsuccessful, and you must repeat the procedure or replace the tyre.
Step 7: Lower the motorcycle/scooter
If you used a jack or a stand to lift the bike/scooter, carefully lower it and check the tyre pressure once more. If necessary, make adjustments.
When to surrender and insert a tube?
It should be noted that not all punctures can be repaired. If the puncture is too large, the tyre is damaged, or the sidewall is compromised, the tyre must be replaced. Also, if the puncture is on the sidewall of the tyre or close to the valve stem, repairing the tyre may be dangerous, and it is best to replace it.
No matter how hard you try, there's always the possibility that a tubeless tyre won't be repairable on the road or trail. Inserting an inner tube with sealant already in the tyre can be a messy business, so it's usually a last resort.
Before installing an inner tube, thoroughly inspect the tyre for any punctures or potentially harmful objects such as thorns. Just because you found one doesn't mean there aren't more lurking in the rubber, ready to puncture your inner tube!
Snakebite punctures can still occur with tubeless tyres, so make sure you're running adequate pressures in your tyres, especially when travelling through rough or rocky terrain, to avoid a nasty double puncture from an impact on the rim. These are notoriously difficult to master.
Advice and Caution:
It is best to repair the tyre as soon as possible after it has been punctured to prevent dirt and debris from entering the hole and making the repair more difficult. Riding the bike/scooter with an underinflated tyre can cause tyre damage and affect the vehicle's handling.
If the puncture is on the tyres sidewall or near the valve stem, it is best to replace the tyre rather than repair it, as these areas are more prone to failure. If you don't have a repair kit or a can of compressed air, you can temporarily replace the punctured tyre with a spare tube.