Leak in tubeless wheel setup... HED Jet 6+/5000TL
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  1. #1
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    Leak in tubeless wheel setup... HED Jet 6+/5000TL

    I have tubless on my road bike and currently my rear tire is leaking air at a pretty high rate. It is a HED Jet 6+ with Silca tubeless, tape, Zipp tubeless valve stems and a Conti 5000TL tire.

    I did the obvious and sprayed the tire with soapy water but I'm not getting any bubbles. The only thing I can think of is that air is leaking somewhere around the inner part of the wheel... somewhare?

    I'm not getting any sort of sealant leaking or shooting out anywhere, so I'm sort of at a loss here... any ideas?

    I was thinking I've two choices here, pull it all apart, retape the wheel, reseat the valve stem or replace it... I think the Zipp stem sucks TBH and reset the tire.

    It's losing a significant amount of air, like going flat over night and my front wheel... same setup is fine.

    Looking for ideas to troubleshoot the leak...

  2. #2
    tlg
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    I wouldn't call going flat overnight a high rate leak. If you can't diagnose it with soapy water, that's a slow leak.

    What sealant are you using?

    I would fill it with sealant. Pump it up. Spin the wheel for a couple minutes. 0, 45, 90. All around to get the sealant spread around everywhere. Do it again after an hour.
    Sealant should seal up and leak at the bead or stem. If that doesn't work, I'd pull it apart and replace the tape. Inspect it closely as you remove the tape to see if there's any sealant getting under the tape.

    Oh... did you bubble test the valve core? Remove and inspect the valve core? Sometimes they get a little clogged with sealant and don't close properly.
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  3. #3
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    I got set a of 5000TL a couple of months ago,,, one of the tires leaked out the sidewall, ..

    It was replaced by my dealer.

  4. #4
    dcb
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    I've had mountain bike tires that leaked through the sidewalls before. The solution was to lay the wheels on their sides for 30-60 minutes each right after putting sealant in. The sealant actually coats the sidewalls and stops the leaks. There could be road/gravel tires like this as well but I'm not sure.

  5. #5
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    Agree its slow and isn't awful on an hour or two ride... but an interval workout on rollers is a killer. Air pressure makes a big difference with my rollers... I digress

    I'm using Truckerco Cream which I think is similar to Stan's race formula. Latex with rubber bits and definitely checked the valve... replaced it as well.

    Will do a bit more sealant and see if I can coat more of the tire, etc. Otherwise new tape it is...

    Quote Originally Posted by Kickgear View Post
    I got set a of 5000TL a couple of months ago,,, one of the tires leaked out the sidewall, ..

    It was replaced by my dealer.
    I've not gotten any bubbles on the actual tire and I sprayed it pretty good, could be though!

    Quote Originally Posted by dcb View Post
    in. The sealant actually coats the sidewalls and stops the leaks. There could be road/gravel tires like this as well but I'm not sure.
    Going to put in some more sealant to see if I can coat it well.

    Appreciate the feedback so far!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by tlg View Post
    ....
    Agree its slow and isn't awful on an hour or two ride... but an interval workout on rollers is a killer. Air pressure makes a big difference with my rollers... I digress

    I'm using Truckerco Cream which I think is similar to Stan's race formula. Latex with rubber bits and definitely checked the valve... replaced it as well.

    Will do a bit more sealant and see if I can coat more of the tire, etc. Otherwise new tape it is...

    Quote Originally Posted by Kickgear View Post
    I got set a of 5000TL a couple of months ago,,, one of the tires leaked out the sidewall, ..

    It was replaced by my dealer.
    I've not gotten any bubbles on the actual tire and I sprayed it pretty good, could be though!

    Quote Originally Posted by dcb View Post
    in. The sealant actually coats the sidewalls and stops the leaks. There could be road/gravel tires like this as well but I'm not sure.
    Going to put in some more sealant to see if I can coat it well.

    Appreciate the feedback so far!

  7. #7
    tlg
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    Quote Originally Posted by xeon View Post
    I'm using Truckerco Cream which I think is similar to Stan's race formula.
    I wasn't aware Truckerco made sealant. I've only ever used Orange Seal as it's always suited me well.

    I'm a big fan of Truckerco. Been using their disc pads for years. Recently switched to their carbon rim brake pads too and they're pretty awesome so far.
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  8. #8
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    If you aren't getting bubbles / suds at with soapy water on the bead and tire, it's not leaking there so it's either the tape or the valve stem, and I would check those before adding sealant. For the sidewall and bead leak check, I just take a soaking wet paper towel with a good blob of dish soap on it and wipe around the tire and bead till it's soaked and dripping.

    Were it me, I would start by looking at the stem doing 2 things

    1. Make sure it's as snug as you can get it by hand.

    2. If it is already snug, then break the tire bead loose at the stem and check to see that it didn't rotate when you tightened it. Correct and retighten and try again if it's not sitting in the channel correctly.

    If it's leaking enough to go flat over night and it's not at the stem, sealant probably isn't going to fix it, you likely have something wrong with your taping. Putting sealant in before you pass all these checks is may result in and avoidable mess. If it passes 1 and 2, I would pull the tire off and inspect the tape before putting sealant in. Its pretty easy to pull the tape toward the center and lose the seal when putting a tight tire on (which most tubeless tires are - tight that is). I haven't had sealant correct a taping problem or a turned or lose valve stem.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by xeon View Post
    I did the obvious and sprayed the tire with soapy water but I'm not getting any bubbles. The only thing I can think of is that air is leaking somewhere around the inner part of the wheel... somewhare?
    Fill a laundry tub with enough water to fully submerge a section of the rim. Put the tire in the tub an rotate it slowly. You should be able to easily see bubbles.

  10. #10
    tlg
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    Fill a laundry tub with enough water to fully submerge a section of the rim. Put the tire in the tub an rotate it slowly. You should be able to easily see bubbles.
    That'll work if the leak is at the bead or stem. If it's leaking through the rim tape it won't work. The air will disperse and come out of the spoke holes above the water.
    Plus you'll start filling the rim with water through the spoke holes and get air bubbles escaping the rim. Which isn't the leak.
    It'd be better to fill a bathtub with enough water to cover the tire bead but not the entire rim section.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by tlg View Post
    It'd be better to fill a bathtub with enough water to cover the tire bead but not the entire rim section.
    That would be impossible, but you could use a round horse trough. And without diving goggles, how are you going to see the bubbles, and what about the waves, ...????

    After every ride just take it into the bathtub with you and try and figure it out. That should speed up the whole process immensely.
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  12. #12
    tlg
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    Quote Originally Posted by duriel View Post
    That would be impossible, but you could use a round horse trough. And without diving goggles, how are you going to see the bubbles, and what about the waves, ...????
    The 'impossible' is really simple. Read closer. I didn't say fill the entire tub. ~1" of water will do it.

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  13. #13
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    So we are spending hours proving where it is not leaking?
    Where is it leaking should be priority!
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  14. #14
    tlg
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    Quote Originally Posted by duriel View Post
    So we are spending hours proving where it is not leaking?
    Where is it leaking should be priority!
    So rather than trolling... give the OP your expert advice how to 'quickly' find the leak.
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  15. #15
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    ... can't help, I run tubes in everything except my KIA & Kawa. ..sorry!
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by tlg View Post
    That'll work if the leak is at the bead or stem. If it's leaking through the rim tape it won't work. The air will disperse and come out of the spoke holes above the water.
    It might well not tell you where the leak is, but it will tell you a bunch of places where the leak is not. The OP asked about sidewall leakage, and it would detect that as well as valve, bead, and puncture leakage. Seems like a pretty good head start on identifying where the leak is.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Srode View Post

    Were it me, I would start by looking at the stem doing 2 things
    So I think I found the mystery... you I did a facepalm when I found it AND again after it held air over night and into the next day... and until now.

    I increased the soap/water mixture in my spray bottle and it was super sudsy. Sprayed down the whole tire, sidewall, bead... nothing. Sprayed the valve stem and nothing... then I came back and SURPRISE! The valve stem had a bloom of bubbles.

    So I pulled it, slapped in another one it holds air! So it was the #$%! valve stem all along!

    Visible the little rubber seal looks fine, no latex buildup but that was it. Been a couple of day and its holding air reasonably like it should.

    Tubeless is nice in some regards but I feel like I'm learning a lot as I live with them. Moreso than I ever did with good ol tubed wheels.

    Thanks for all the ideas and I'm glad I checked the valve before retaping, etc. Wouldn't have been a loss but wasn't the issue afterall.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by xeon View Post
    So I think I found the mystery... you I did a facepalm when I found it AND again after it held air over night and into the next day... and until now.

    I increased the soap/water mixture in my spray bottle and it was super sudsy. Sprayed down the whole tire, sidewall, bead... nothing. Sprayed the valve stem and nothing... then I came back and SURPRISE! The valve stem had a bloom of bubbles.

    So I pulled it, slapped in another one it holds air! So it was the #$%! valve stem all along!

    Visible the little rubber seal looks fine, no latex buildup but that was it. Been a couple of day and its holding air reasonably like it should.

    Tubeless is nice in some regards but I feel like I'm learning a lot as I live with them. Moreso than I ever did with good ol tubed wheels.

    Thanks for all the ideas and I'm glad I checked the valve before retaping, etc. Wouldn't have been a loss but wasn't the issue afterall.
    Awesome, good to hear you figured it out. It's amazing what some good soapy water will uncover when it sits a few minutes. It's my best friend installing tubeless on a rim too.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Srode View Post
    Awesome, good to hear you figured it out. It's amazing what some good soapy water will uncover when it sits a few minutes. It's my best friend installing tubeless on a rim too.
    And my "wheel in the tub" method would have found that on the first pass.

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