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Road tubeless setup, and have been happy with it for several years. In the past year I have had a couple of my tires blister either on the centerline of the tread or just slightly off it. In one case it was just one blister, and in another I had eight (!) blisters on one tire. Nothing catastrophic happened and I replaced the tires both times. This occurred on a name-brand performance-level tire (not silly light, but still respectable) that I have been using for a couple years now without issue (700c x 25 on a wide rim that nets a true 28mm width). Both incidents were on the rear tire and the tire pressure was at a reasonable 82 psi (5.7 bar). Incidents have happened when tire was only 25% worn in one case and 50% worn in the other. I am not a heavyweight. I do corner a bit hard when the occasion presents itself (love the feeling of railing a corner at speed). A fellow rider using the same tire also had this happen once recently, which somewhat eliminates it being just me. I have had a flawless run with these tires for 3+ years before the recent incidents.

the blister

What causes this to happen, especially more than one time? A bad batch of tires? Hard cornering? Bad luck?

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  • Any chance you used it on an indoor trainer where the drum rubs against the tire? May 17 at 18:47
  • @NoahSutherland nope, not this one. It is purely on the road. My old road bike is on the wheel-off smart trainer for a few years now. I could see that as a possible for a wheel-on trainer, especially with a lot of power being put down (not a problem I have). ;)
    – Ted Hohl
    May 17 at 19:43

2 Answers 2

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This problem was not uncommon when tubeless was new, but this is the first case i've seen in a modern tyre.

In the early days this was thought to be due to Stans sealant containing ammonia and some sort of chemical reaction. However I think the case was actually that tyre manufacturers didn't have a robust manufacturing method for tubeless tyres.

More recently this is generally accepted as a manufacturing fault and distributors should exchange these for new tyres. The layers of tyre have delaminated and air is getting between them.

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Manufacturing defect. The bond between the casing and tread has broken down, air is leaking though the casing and stuck under the outer lay.

I would look at taking back to place of purchase and see if you have a warranty claim.

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