My experience with valve extenders

After I found all the information about racing wheels I decided to give them a try but at the same time a new set of questions came with it. So after I asked around, between my closest friends I found that some of them love normal valve extenders and some of them love integrated valve extenders.

Good points and bad points were said on the table and I was still on the limbo.

Valve extenders and integrated valve extenders can be found in different sizes according to the depth of the rim, different brands, prices and colors. They are easy to mount in the tubular tire or in the inner tube, a little bit of grease or plumbers tape and a wrench do the job nicely.

Both can be removed from the outside of the rim when you have the tire glued on the rim or the inner tube installed.

  • Valve extenders, I think these are for the ones who like to keep the air in the tires all the time or use the wheels for racing only. It is easy to put air in but little harder to release it, you can use a clothes hanger or piece of thick wire to push the valve stem down and get the air out. As long as the stem is upright you can use the wire, once the stem moves to any direction then a real issue comes.

In one instance I got a flat tire and after I removed my tubular tire I found that the stem was moved and stuck but the air was already out so I replaced the tire, glued it down and done.

On another instance, I found myself prior a race when I was in the need to replace the tubular tire due to mileage and there was no way to release the air in the tubular tire.

One of the solutions I found was to remove the extender and try to release the air with a thick wire, using a flashlight to locate it inside of the rim, once you find out what direction the stem is you try to push it hard but do not break it. The other solution is to pinch the tire, which I think was the worse solution so try the first one, take your time and use a thick wire.

I tried the first option and I succeed. I removed the air from the tire and installed the new one in no time.

After my race I decided no to go trough the same thing again so I went ahead and ordered some Integrated valve extenders.

  • The Integrated valve extenders are very nice, very light and easy to install. Remove the stem valve from the tire, screw in the correct extender and reinstall the stem valve at the end.

After I glued my tires back on my wheels and I was able to take the air out of my tires after every ride with any problems because you have the stem always out of the rim. Now I can replace my tubular tires anytime I need.

I normally ride tubular tires now, they have a good feeling and better ride but now days you can find clincher tires that hold as much pressure as a tubular tire. That is something I am going to try next.

This is my experience, once again a “live and learn” situation that I found in this crazy world called triathlons.

I hope you find this information helpful and you make the right decision between valve extenders and integrated valve extenders.

Thank you for reading.


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