Slow Leak

I think this little ditty might illustrate how I’m feeling about life at the moment. For the past month or so my new Tubolito tube on my front wheel has been losing pressure overnight. I’m normally the kind of guy to just change the tube and chuck the old one, but I’ve been lulled into some false confidence by the fact that the pressure holds on a ride, big or small. It’s just when I wake up the next morning that I see 40 psi on the pump.

Not my wheel. Too lazy to even do that…

I’ve never stuck with a slow leak this long and I really thought I’d have a blow-out by now, but I’m thinking about waiting it out till something catastrophic happens. At least that’ll mean something is happening in my life.

What do you all do with these things? Careful, your answer may betray your true character!

15 thoughts on “Slow Leak

  1. Gerry: I also use Tubolitos. Last year, not a single flat/leak for an entire year. That being said, I have had 1 flat (thorn) with my crossbike and two weeks ago first very tiny leak on the road bike (the one year + ). Get the special fix-a-flat Tubolito set: a few bucks for 5 patches. But here’s what I learned: I do patch (simple—follow directions), put it 5min in a vise, and then directly mount the tire and inflate. So far, no issues. [The first time I pachter the cross tire, I left it too long in vise and did not mount it until next day—that patch did not hold. I will redo that one too. For $30 box tube, it pays to patch 🙂

    • They aren’t cheap, that’s for sure, so I was a little annoyed at the puncture. I do like the way they roll, though, so I’ll consider this one just bad luck! When I order my next couple of tubes I’ll definitely get the patch kit.

  2. What do I do with these things? Probably the same as you, nothing.
    Let the tyre make the next move.
    In the meantime there is always the simple pleasures like Jeudi, rosé and dancing.

    • I’m not much of a dancer, but I might try a little jig since you suggested it. And ‘let the tyre make the next move’ is the best advice this week!

  3. MY PLAN: let it be for a bit and wait for a rainy day to leisurely change out the tube in the comfort of your home, with a cold beverage at hand and some nice music playing in the background. REALITY: the day never comes because I get distracted with other things and the tire blows at the most inopportune time, usually 500 miles from home with temperatures approaching that of the surface of the sun.

    Ironically, my wife had a slow leak just yesterday morning while we were on a weekend getaway. We chanced a 23 mile ride and got away with it. I swapped out the tube when we got home. There’s only so much risk I’m willing to take with my spouse!

    • If it was Shoko it’d be a no-brainer, but since my risk of injury is less from a catastrophic blowout than from a full frontal spouse attack, I haven’t gotten around to it. I am a little more motivated now, though, since you mentioned I could have a ‘cold beverage’ close by!

  4. “It’s just when I wake up the next morning that I see 40 psi on the pump.”

    Yeah, that’s not a slow leak, unless you are starting your rides at 50psi. (Maybe you’re now running fattish tires and you ARE starting the day at 50psi. What do I know?) Assuming you’re starting at 70 or 80, your choice of vocabulary – “slow leak” – reveals your desire to revise the facts. Presumably you’ve opened the beer by now and taken care of it properly one way or another.

    If anyone wanted to push back on my post here, s/he would merely need to point out that every MTB tire change I’ve had to do in the last fifteen years has involved getting covered in sealant and a lot of subsequent work with a garden hose and an air compressor. In short, my judgment in these matters is highly suspect.

    Meanwhile in desperation the other day, when I couldn’t get a new-ish road tire on a brand new rim without levers and a consequent tube pinch, I mounted the thing up tubeless – first time on my road bike – and it worked PERFECTLY the first time. Test ride, check. I was feeling very smug. Then I started reading too many dire warnings about how DIY tubeless with a conventional road tire is a very bad idea and reluctantly dismantled the whole operation.

    Finally I tried again with a tube and the tire went right on with bare hands, first try. WTF?

    • Tony, do I have a ‘fast leak’ then? From 100 psi (I’m still on 23s) to 40 in 24 hours is something!

      I actually have all the tools to (except for a tire…) to convert my Bianchi to tubeless; something I’ve been threatening to do for years. And then I hear the inevitable sealant story and have 2nd thoughts. Now if you tell me it’ll save me 50 grams we might be getting somewhere.

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