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How to Replace a Bike Tire Valve Core

With sustainability being pushed to the forefront of everything we do, we cyclists must educate ourselves and learn proper bike maintenance to be as self-sufficient and resourceful as possible. 

Understanding how to replace bike tire valve cores can bail you out of sticky situations and will also mean that you won’t throw away inner tubes or valves that still have life left in them. 

Tire Valve Cores
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    There is little difference in the method of replacing valve cores when it comes to Presta vs Schrader.

    Presta valve cores are slightly easier to remove as you can remove the core with almost any pair of pliers. 

    If you don’t have needle nose pliers, you may struggle to remove the core of a Schrader valve without a unique valve removal tool, which can be purchased at a very affordable price.

    Schrader Valve Core Replacement

    To replace a Schrader valve core, you’ll need a unique valve core removal tool or a pair of super-thin needle-nosed pliers.

    If you’re unsure which valve your bike uses, compare yours to the images in this guide

    The steps below provide the easiest method to remove a Schrader valve core.

    Remove the valve stem cap (dust cap) and place it to one side. If the tire is inflated, deflate it before completing the following steps.

    Using your valve core replacement tool or pliers, position your tool onto either flat side of the valve core. If using pliers, be careful not to squeeze too hard on the core, or you may damage it.

    Then, gently begin twisting the core anti-clockwise until it reaches the end of the internal threading.

    Remove the existing core from the valve stem and place the replacement on the top of the internal thread, ensuring the threading is aligned correctly.

    Begin to wind the new core down the internal threading.

    Don’t force it if you feel resistance, as this can permanently damage the valve.

    The core is fully inserted into the valve stem when it becomes stiff to turn.

    The core is now in place, so remove your tool and inflate your tire to the desired pressure.

    If you need help with this, read our guide covering how to pump a bike tire

    Once inflated, replace the valve stem cap, and you’re done. 

    Presta Valve Core Replacement

    To replace a Presta valve core, you can use a regular pair of pliers or a valve core removal tool.

    If you’re unsure which valve your bike uses, compare yours to the images in this guide.

    Follow the simple steps below for the fastest method of removal.

    Unscrew the valve dust cap and keep it in a safe place. 

    If the Presta tire is inflated, loosen the valve core nut and remove the air from the tire. This will make removing the valve’s core much easier.

    Using your valve core replacement tool or pliers, position your tool onto either flat side of the valve core. If using pliers, be careful not to squeeze too hard on the core, or you may damage it.

    Then, gently begin twisting the core anti-clockwise until it reaches the end of the internal threading.

    Using a pair of pliers or your removal tool, gently place them on either flat side of the valve core.

    Slowly twist the core anti-clockwise until it reaches the end of the internal threading.

    Remove the existing core from the valve stem and place the replacement core onto the top of the internal thread, making sure the threading is aligned correctly.

    Then, slowly screw the new core onto the internal threading. Don’t apply too much force or over-tighten if you feel resistance, as this can permanently damage the valve.

    The core will now be in place, so remove your tool and inflate your tire to the desired pressure. 

    If you need help with this, read our guide covering how to pump a bike tire

    Once inflated, replace your valved stem cap, and you’re done!

    Summary - How to Replace a Bike Tire Valve Core

    As you’ll now have noticed, replacing valve cores on a bike tire takes little to no time and can normally be achieved without specialized tools. 

    If you’re not sure which valve type your bike uses, our bike valve guide will help you identify which valve you have, helping you to get back on the two wheels!

    Also, whatever you do, don’t forget to return your valve caps (dust caps) after replacing the cores. Without dust caps, bad things can start to happen to your bike tire valves

    Author of This Post:
    James Grear (Lead Editor)
    James Grear (Lead Editor)

    Understanding how devastating it is to have a bike stolen, I've researched & immersed myself in the world of bicycle security since 2013.

    I then built BikeLockWiki in 2019 to share everything I'd learned with the worldwide cycling community so that cyclists can improve their bike security skills and make informed decisions when purchasing new products and services.

    Learn More about Me & BikeLockWiki here.

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