Whatís the consensus on cracks in tires (due to age)
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  1. #1
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    Whatís the consensus on cracks in tires (due to age)

    I recently started bike riding again after quite a number of years off. I had replaced my tires not too long before I quit, but they have some cracks in them from sitting in my garage for the past 5 or so years. They have maybe 250 miles on them total, and Iíd hate to throw away a pair of tires if theyíre still structurally sound.

    I looked online and read everything from ďnever take a tire out with cracks.Ē to ďthere will be absolute no issues at allĒ. The cracks are not very deep and the tires are a pair of Continental Grand Prix 4000ís if that makes a difference.

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  2. #2
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    I would replace them.

  3. #3
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    Tires are much less expensive than hospital bills, replace them.
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  4. #4
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    ditch it. you can get a good tire for $30 on sale.

    the problem with a cracked tire is not in rolling straight on the flat. It's when you brake hard and/or corning is when it rears its ugly face.

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    The first thing you'll want to do is post this in the correct sub forum.

  6. #6
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    A road tire brand new bought and mounted, never used but then stored in the garage for five years should IMO be changed.

    Definitely, change the tires you reference!

    Good riding on your return to the roads. Be safe!

  7. #7
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    I recently had the same situation. With the same tires, in fact. Back on the bike after about 3 years off. My Conti's had more miles on them when I got back on, though. Back tire was already a bit squared off also. They were cracked about like yours, but I figured they were good enough, and that the worst thing that would happen would be that I'd have to call the Wife to come retrieve me, after one of the tires split under me 5 or 10 miles out. I put another 300 miles on them, before I decided I was pushing my luck, and bought a new set.
    It ain't rocket surgery. Buy everything on sale, pedal when you have too, coast when you can, and get home in one piece. Keep going forward - there is no reverse.

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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gimme Shoulder View Post
    I recently had the same situation. With the same tires, in fact. Back on the bike after about 3 years off. My Conti's had more miles on them when I got back on, though. Back tire was already a bit squared off also. They were cracked about like yours, but I figured they were good enough, and that the worst thing that would happen would be that I'd have to call the Wife to come retrieve me, after one of the tires split under me 5 or 10 miles out. I put another 300 miles on them, before I decided I was pushing my luck, and bought a new set.
    This was my game plan as well before I posted this thread, haha. I plan to spend 95%+ of my riding on designated bike paths completely separated from any traffic so worst case for me would also be having someone pick me up. I think Iím probably just gonna go ahead and replace them if everyone is recommending it.

    What tires did you end up replacing your GP4000ís with?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickRandhawa View Post
    What tires did you end up replacing your GP4000ís with?
    what size are yours? (diameter and width.)
    Yossarian: don't worry. nothing's going to happen to you that won't happen to the rest of us.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackfrancois View Post
    what size are yours? (diameter and width.)
    I have 700x23 on there now. Was planning on going with 700x25 this time around. I was planning on doing the conti Grand Prix 4000 again or maybe the gatorskin to better protect against flats. The trails I ride are super clean and well maintained overall, so Iíve never actually had a flat before but the peace of mind seems nice...I chose gp4000 last time because I heard they were more comfortable than the gator skins.

  11. #11
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    You canít go wrong with the GP4000s, but I wanted to try something I had not tried before. I bought a pair of Vittoria Open Cora. Smoother feeling than the Contiís, I think. Donít know about durability yet.

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    It's probably more likely than not you could ride them for a long time and they'd be fine. But the worst case scenario of replacing them is that it'd cost you like 50 or 60 bucks. The worst case scenario of keeping them on there is that you are seriously injured or die.

    I don't mess around with rubber. That's what keeps me off the pavement.

  13. #13
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    I'd keep riding those hardly used puppies. You probably aren't going to wear them out this year and maybe ask Santa for a new front tire and keep these for the rear if you're really worried. The cracks aren't that bad IMO.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gimme Shoulder View Post
    You canít go wrong with the GP4000s, but I wanted to try something I had not tried before. I bought a pair of Vittoria Open Cora. Smoother feeling than the Contiís, I think. Donít know about durability yet.
    Don't expect much durability from Vittorias.
    "L'enfer, c'est les autres"

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    Quote Originally Posted by No Time Toulouse View Post
    Don't expect much durability from Vittorias.
    Thatís what the reviews say. Weíll see. They sure feel good, though.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gimme Shoulder View Post
    Thatís what the reviews say. Weíll see. They sure feel good, though.
    Oh, I love the feeling too, but man, do they wear quickly!
    "L'enfer, c'est les autres"

  17. #17
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    Actually those don't look too bad. I love Michelin but they seem to get those type of surface cracks pretty quickly. I have a newish set of pro 4 endurance that have cracks like that. They last much longer then other Pro 4's and are pretty puncture resistant . I will ride them through the fall and replace them in the spring.

    Why I would change the tires you have though is the combination of age and cracks. Probably nothing will happen but if it does you will seriously regret not spending the money. Order some from ProBikeKit or Merlin etc. You should be able to find a real nice set for <60.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by 50x25 View Post
    Actually those don't look too bad. I love Michelin but they seem to get those type of surface cracks pretty quickly. I have a newish set of pro 4 endurance that have cracks like that. They last much longer then other Pro 4's and are pretty puncture resistant . I will ride them through the fall and replace them in the spring.

    Why I would change the tires you have though is the combination of age and cracks. Probably nothing will happen but if it does you will seriously regret not spending the money. Order some from ProBikeKit or Merlin etc. You should be able to find a real nice set for <60.
    Thanks for the tip on Merlin, I ended up ordering through them and saved about $10 or so over amazon or Jensen

  19. #19
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    Ok guys, I went ahead and ordered a pair of the Grand Prix 4000s IIís and a couple inner tubes. Figure I might as well change those as well. I think maybe the tires would have been ok, but I didnít wanna risk it based off what everyone said. Itíll be nice to use a 700x25 over the 23ís so thatís cool too.

    Next question....any good videos or articles on how to change a tire? I ended up ruining two tubes last time I replaced my tires...
    Last edited by RickRandhawa; 08-19-2018 at 01:13 PM.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickRandhawa View Post
    Any videos or articles on how to change a tire? I ended up ruining two tubes last time I replaced my tires.
    try to use your hands only to mount the tire. if you must use a tire lever to mount it (as i often do), use a plastic one. some tires are impossible to mount on certain rims without a dedicated bead tool. a few tips:

    - center the tire label over the valve on the drive side.
    - mount one tire bead without the tube in place.
    - air the tube with your mouth/lungs before insertion.
    - insert the tube, stem first.
    - then start working the other bead in the rim, stem area first.
    - be careful when using a lever. don't pinch the tube.
    - once mounted, inflate to 15-20 psi and work the tire on the rim. bounce it on the floor.
    - deflate a little, then inflate to desired pressure.
    Yossarian: don't worry. nothing's going to happen to you that won't happen to the rest of us.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackfrancois View Post
    try to use your hands only to mount the tire. if you must use a tire lever to mount it (as i often do), use a plastic one. some tires are impossible to mount on certain rims without a dedicated bead tool. a few tips:

    - center the tire label over the valve on the drive side.
    - mount one tire bead without the tube in place.
    - air the tube with your mouth/lungs before insertion.
    - insert the tube, stem first.
    - then start working the other bead in the rim, stem area first.
    - be careful when using a lever. don't pinch the tube.
    - once mounted, inflate to 15-20 psi and work the tire on the rim. bounce it on the floor.
    - deflate a little, then inflate to desired pressure.
    This is a great write-up. I pretty much do this, exactly.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickRandhawa View Post
    I recently started bike riding again after quite a number of years off. I had replaced my tires not too long before I quit, but they have some cracks in them from sitting in my garage for the past 5 or so years. They have maybe 250 miles on them total, and Iíd hate to throw away a pair of tires if theyíre still structurally sound.

    I looked online and read everything from ďnever take a tire out with cracks.Ē to ďthere will be absolute no issues at allĒ. The cracks are not very deep and the tires are a pair of Continental Grand Prix 4000ís if that makes a difference.

    FD0C4AD1-2A81-45E8-82AC-2478B9EC24EC.jpg
    ADA60407-4E99-44BD-9397-9A2B473E22AA.jpg
    I wouldn't be concerned with that little bit of crazing, as long as it's in the tread rubber and not the casing. Run them on the back instead of the front. A flat on the rear is much easier to control. I ran Michelin HiLites for years that were horribly prone to tread cracking, and never had an issue due to that.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickRandhawa View Post
    I have 700x23 on there now. Was planning on going with 700x25 this time around. I was planning on doing the conti Grand Prix 4000 again or maybe the gatorskin to better protect against flats. The trails I ride are super clean and well maintained overall, so Iíve never actually had a flat before but the peace of mind seems nice...I chose gp4000 last time because I heard they were more comfortable than the gator skins.
    At the comfort end of the spectrum are the Vittoria Open Corsas at the cost of puncture resistance and durability. At the bombproof end of the spectrum are the Maxxis refuses at the cost of comfort.

    I have found a good compromise tire is the Vittoria Rubino Pro G+. I'm running those now and they are pretty comfy, price is less than Contis, and haven't had any cuts or punctures in over 1,000 miles.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    ďStatistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.Ē -- Aaron Levenstein



  24. #24
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    Why not use car tire conditioner. Some do leave a slickness so whipping clean before riding to be save. Some will do good to soften up hardened dry rubber. I've used super glue on my gp4000 after punctures. I'd try glueing any minor cracks after treating my tires with conditioner. I wouldn't try super glueing a dry rot tire without getting moisture back into the rubber. If the tires rubber is brittle forget it. I'd use a conditioner before you park the bike for long gaps.

  25. #25
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    I just noticed similar mild cracks on a 8-month old S-Works Turbo tire that has maybe 1,200 miles tops on it. Itís kind of a delicate slick tire that has little chunks missing here and there. Time to replace. Iíve been wanting to try the 28c GP4000sii anyhow.


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