From my experience, I've learned that Slime will plug/seal a small hole in a tube. Sometimes the tube needs to be inflated 2 or 3 times for hole to seal.

If a glueless patch is applied over a small hole, the Slime will eventually loosen the patch. The Slime will seal the hole if the patch is removed.

I have a tube with a large hole that Slime isn't sealing. What are some ways to patch it?

I'd like to try to patch it with a piece of tube and rubber cement:

  1. scuff both the tube and piece
  2. apply the rubber cement to the tube and piece
  3. allow to dry
  4. apply piece
  • 1
    In my experience, once you go sealant then patching becomes a waste of time and you're better off replacing the whole tube if the sealant doesn't work.
    – Criggie
    Jul 17 '19 at 20:02
  • 1
    A simple two-step process: 1) Throw out the old tube. 2) Install a new tube. Jul 17 '19 at 20:10

There is exactly one way to fix that tube: Toss it in the trash can, and buy a new one. Whether patches are glue-less or not, they all get unglued over time by the slime.

And while you are buying a new tube, don't buy more slime. Buy a serious puncture proof tire instead. For any slime, there is an upper limit of how much puncture it can seal before failing you, and then you are again reduced to patching/replacing slime filled tubes. This happens much more frequently than that you find shards large enough to defeat a good puncture proof tire.

(I used slime myself for many years, and I patched my tubes over, and over again. Then I switched to puncture proof tires many years ago, and had exactly three punctures since, one of which was largely my own fault. With all the time I'm saving on the futile patching of those puncture riddled squishy tubes, I find the extra money for the better tires is an excellent investment.)

  • I've never had puncture using slime however I have had to replace a couple of tubes where the slime has destroyed the Schrader valve.
    – Dan K
    Jul 18 '19 at 7:32
  • How fast are those puncture-proof tyres? Are they competitive with high performance supple tyres? A good tyre can make a big difference. Just bu changing from a stock Schwalbe to a G-One I decreased my commute time by 5 minutes from one hour.
    – Vladimir F
    Jul 19 '19 at 13:34
  • @VladimirF Well, of course you loose a bit of energy due to the thicker rubber layers. How much, I cannot say. But, as long as you are not riding in a race where every second counts, you are generally saving more time by not needing to patch than you loose by being a tad slower. I mean, how long does it take to patch a tube, when you include all the required steps, starting at getting off the bike, taking out your patch kit, etc., and how often does that happen* Plus, if you put slime into your tubes, you definitely also loose a bit of speed. Because stirring slime is also an energy drain. Jul 19 '19 at 18:00

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