How to Fix Leaking Schrader Valves – A Brief Description
Every part of your bike has its importance to the overall function of the bike. Whether it is your chain, crank, tube, tires, or derailleur, it is necessary to ensure all of your bike’s components are functioning as they should.
For instance, you will notice that when you pump air into the tube, there is a valve that regulates airflow into and out of the tube. This prevents the tube from leaking air. Thus, It contributes to the overall safety and comfort of your ride.
Types of Bike Valves
There are two major types of valves used in bikes, namely:
- Schrader valves
- Presta valves
The Schrader valve’s core is made primarily of brass. However, some are made of stainless steel, and it is present in less expensive bikes. Schrader valves tend to be more common than the Presta valve.
Presta valves, on the other hand, are usually found in road bikes. They have a smaller diameter than Schrader valves and do not always have removable valve cores.
Why Does A Valve Leak?
The valve can only perform its functions if it is not compromised in its parts, such as the stem and the core.
Once the valve stem is bent within the ring-opening and rubs with the tube, there will be leakage. Valve leakage occurs mostly with the valve core. It happens whenever the fiber of the tube sealant settles in the center.
An incorrect position of the valve can also cause leakage. This occurs whenever the valve protrudes away from the rim instead of being placed squarely within the rim.
Additionally, when the valve stem bonds to the rubber jacket, valve leakage may occur.
How to Detect Leaking In Your Schrader Valve
Inflate the tube, then immerse it in water. Once you notice air bubbles, you will know that there is a leakage. If the bubble is through the valve, you only need to tighten the valve core to stop leakage. However, if the bubble is around the valve, it means that the valve stem leaks at the base.
Here’s How to Fix Your Leaking Schrader Valve
Here’s is a video explaining the process (credit to BikeBlogger):
Follow the steps below to fix your Schrader valve with ease:
- Wet the valve: You should wet the various parts with a soap solution and look for bubbles at the leaking spot
- Deflate the tire: The remaining air should be out once you open the valve. The presence of residual air can make fixing difficult
- Unscrew the valve: A valve core tool is the best equipment to use when you want to unscrew the valve. You can also use the Schrader cap on one wheel of the bicycle to facilitate valve removal
- Examine for dirt: The seat, rubber, and sealing ring need proper examination for cuts, fiber, and dust that may prevent the valve from closing fully
- Clean the valve: Immediately after you examine the area surrounding the valve, you should clean the valve seat and the hollow area (bore) of the valve stem
- Tighten the valve core
If you are still uncertain about how to fix a leaking Schrader valve, it is advisable to ask for help from a local bike store. You should also get a replacement valve core if yours has become broken or worn out.