Can You Paint Bike Tires- Introduction
Painting bike tires is possible – although it isn’t advisable – as the chemicals in some paints can damage your bike tires. There’s also no guarantee that the paint will not peel off, as even a single bump caused by a pothole can ruin your work. If you don’t plan on using your tires for anything beyond decoration, then go for it. But if you still want to ride the bike, it is much preferable to simply buy tires in your desired color.
Buying tires in your favorite colors directly from the manufacturer guarantees you long-lasting tires that won’t be damaged or peeled during use.
Why Paint Your Bike Tires?
Tires could surely be painted for the sake of aesthetics – something is truly awe-inspiring about a full-color bike in your favorite shade. As wonderful or eye-catching as it would be, it is still not a good idea to paint your bike tires for use – instead, get the tires from the manufacturer in the color you want. Remember that painting the tires can cause damage to your bike because of chemicals contained in the paint.
What Kind of Paints are Suitable for Rubber Tires?
This is a decision that must be made carefully, as many oil-based paints may dissolve the tire material. If you still want to paint your tire, the best kind of paints would be acrylic paints. Be ready to buy one of good quality. Settling for the cheapest may not be favorable in the long run.
A good quality acrylic paint ensures that you don’t have to worry about the paint falling off rubber tires, as acrylic paints stick more easily to them. To get the paint to adhere to the tires, first apply a spray primer to ensure a longer lasting application. Acrylic paints, compared to traditional car paints, are wonderful.
How to Make a Whitewall Tire
The whitewall tire can be a classy option. Whitewalls give your bike or vehicle a different, shinier look.
There are two options you could choose from to realize the dream of a whitewall tire. One option is to choose whitewall rubber strips, and though these might be a bit expensive, they can also withstand more extreme conditions and daily wear. Ensure that before application you clean the area for the strips thoroughly, until free from any kind of dirt or oil. Then, simply apply glue to the cleaned area and place the rubber strips. Apply pressure for two minutes, then inspect to ensure there is no oozing or leakage.
Next, the alternative to whitewall rubber strips is a can of specialized whitewall paint.
This video shows how you can make a whitewall tire using spray paint (Credit to Granddog08rules):
Besides spraying, you could also brush on whitewall paint. The paint is not water-based and formulated to stick to rubber and industrial surfaces, so it is preferable. As usual, you will need to clean your tires thoroughly before you proceed. Depending on your setup, it may be easier to remove the tire for application.
Use masking tape to help you define the area you want to paint. Carefully cover your rims to protect them and let only the area you want to paint be visible. Then, simply proceed to apply the whitewall paint with a paintbrush, but don’t hurry this process, so you don’t end up having uneven tones. Let the paint dry.
Depending on your work, decide if the first coat of paint you’ve applied is enough. If it isn’t, you can go ahead to apply a second or even a third coat. Once it is dry, you can take off the masking tape and assess your results, scraping back gently as needed.
Revive Yellowed Bicycle Whitewall Tires
Yellowed tires may develop on older tires as a result of wear and tear or just dirt. It is absolutely possible to remove the yellowing from your whitewall. Though the tires won’t automatically become brand new, they will become more pleasing to the eyes, and more familiar through a little elbow grease.
You can buy specialized products and solvents for cleaning whitewall tires, or you could use a more inexpensive method. This latter method requires you to use either bleach or a generic washing product. Start by carefully spraying the bleach along the yellowed part, and then brush that area vigorously. At this step you should remove and dismantle the tires because bleach can cause damage to rims and other metals. Scrub until satisfied and rinse thoroughly. Another way to prevent your whitewall from turning yellow is by washing your bike more frequently.