I removed the front tire on my bike for the first time this past week. After I put the tire back on and went for a ride, it appears the bike does not turn as crisply/smoothly as before. I didn't have this issue before I removed the front tire, so I believe it has something to so with me not aligning it correctly. Have you heard of this issue before and any suggestions on how I might fix it?

FYI. I checked and can confirmed the brake pad is not rubbing against the tire.

  • 2
    Did you put the tire on the same direction it was before? Is the axle bottomed at the slots in the fork? Is the tire correctly seated on the rim or does it bulge somewhere?
    – ojs
    Commented Sep 12, 2015 at 13:10

3 Answers 3


Title says wheel alignment but question says you removed and reinstalled the tyre.

Check alignmnent with your fingers - the space between the rim and the forks should be equal and consistant while the wheel rotates.

Does the wheel rotate less freely? Could be you've accidentally upset the cups on the axle. Test this by wiggling the rim left and right. It should have minimal movement.

Does the wheel spin okay when its off the ground (like in a stand) but badly when its being ridden? Did you put sufficient air back in the tube? May be simply low pressure increasing rolling resistance.

Finally - why did you remove the front tyre? Was there a problem with it? Did you refit the same one or did you replace it with another?


More details needed. Road or mountain bike? Did you just just removed the wheel (with tire on it) from the fork (like for transporting), or did you mean you pulled the tire off the wheel rim and replaced it (like repairing a flat)?

Some tires (especially more aggressive mountain bike tires) are directional - did you put the tire back on the same direction it was before? If you did not take the tire off the rim and did not remove the skewer, the skewer clamp should be on the left side of the fork (non-drive side of your bike).

If nothing else, flip your bike upside-down and re-seat the front wheel making sure it's to the bottom of the dropouts on both sides, then make sure the skewer is good and tight.

If you think you may have put the tire on the wheel backwards, remove the wheel and flip it around so the skewer is on the right and see if that makes any difference. If you have disc brakes this won't work, you would have to remove and tire from the wheel to change the direction.


If your rim isn't centered on the hub then putting it back on "backwards" (reversing the wheel so that what had been the right side was now the left side) will change the way the bike tracks down the road. I suppose this could result in the handling difference you describe.

You can't do this with disk brakes, but if you have rim brakes it would be an easy thing to do. If the difference in centering is significant you might also find that the brakes drag.

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