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Can anyone please let me know the life expectancy (no of km or time period) of a cycle tube and tire?

Let us consider different cycles (MTB Hybrid Roadbike) and different terrain (off-road slightly rugged smooth) respectively.

Though I have a hybrid and have rode around 1500 km on it without a change of the tubes, I would love to know the other cycle's life expectancy and it would be helpful for others too.

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2 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

The tube will last the life of the tire, and more, if not punctured too much.

The tire will last until it wears too thin and starts puncturing a lot, unless damaged.

Tires do, however, become brittle and crack in the sidewalls from UV and ozone exposure, and will need to be replaced every 10 years or so if not worn out first. White wall and gum wall tires crack faster. Tubes also will crack with age, around the valve stem.

Running too low of a pressure can also destroy a tire.

1500km is nothing, if the tires are kept properly inflated.

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How many punctures do you think the tube can take and on what basis(2 punctures very close to each other or may be a puncture at the same place a 2nd or 3rd time) or if these don't matter at all? –  Freakyuser Jan 25 '13 at 13:31
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I would only add that 1500km is nothing for a "quality" tire. I've seen cheap department store bikes where the tires have worn out after way less than 1500 km. More often on the rear tire on bikes with coaster brakes, but I've even seen the front tire with more wear than would occur on a better built tire. Although I suppose it could be just due to the size of the tire. A smaller tire will experience more wear over the same distance because it spins faster. Each spot on the tire meets the ground more often, causing more wear. –  Kibbee Jan 25 '13 at 14:01
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@Freakyuser - When you get punctures so close to each other than the patches overlap, that's a problem, but if they're well-spaced then you could probably have a dozen patches without compromising the tube. –  Daniel R Hicks Jan 25 '13 at 16:53
    
@Kibbee - Yeah, coaster brakes (especially on kids' bikes) are a special case, since there's such a temptation to see how long of a skid mark you can make. –  Daniel R Hicks Jan 25 '13 at 16:54
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Tyre lifespan very much depends on a tyre, use and rubber quality. Some high end tyres for MTB racing have very soft compound and they do not last long. A season of riding, if lucky. On the other side you can get hard-rubber commuting tyres that can last you more than 10K miles.

Tubes are good as long as they hold air. In my student days I used to have tubes with about 30 patches and they worked OK. Tubes are not like tyres, they don't wear out with mileage. So don't worry about it.

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I often find that if anything, the valves end up breaking. Happens more often on Presta than Schrader but I've seen it happen on both. –  Kibbee Jan 25 '13 at 16:49
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