100psi and above

I have a road bike. What is the best pressure to pump the tires to =100PSi? What are the benefits/disadvantages of pumping to 110PSi regularly?

All tires are a bit different, check the sidewall for the manufacturer’s recommended tire pressures. You generally want to stay within that range and you’ll be good. You could keep the tire in the lower end of that range and small bumps in the road would smooth out a bit better. When you get higher in that range you should get less rolling resistance (faster) and probably better cornering.

Even the recommended tire pressures are usually conservative in my opinion, so you probably could play with the tire pressure beyond the recommended to a point to find the right balance of comfort/performance for you. But when you go into the low extremes your wheel might bottom out and get damaged when running over something hard and you could get a pinch flat, which is when the tube gets pinched between the rim and the hard thing you just ran over. Go into the high extremes range and you’ll feel every bump in the road and could blow out your tire.

This might be an oversimplification as things sometimes depend on road conditions, rider weight, and the tire itself. But for the example you gave, I would say try it. Inflate to 110 and see if you can feel a difference and are able to get the bike going easier and faster. If so, maybe that’s best for you and that particular tire.

I usually inflate my tires to the recommended tire pressure before I go on long rides. My max PSI is 130, so I keep it around 125-130, but do not bother to inflate on casual rides during the week. If you do not have enough tire pressure you can get pinch flats as stated above.

i ride max psi for the reasons stated above

Comprehensive thanks - I will stick with 110.

I find (the late) Sheldon Brown has a hell of a lot of helpful information on his website. I don’t know how true this is but for what it is worth:


[quote]Most tires have a “maximum” pressure, or a recommended pressure range marked on the side of the tire. These pressure ratings are established by the tire manufacturers after consultation with the legal and marketing departments.

The lawyers want the number kept conservatively low, in case the tire gets mounted on a defective or otherwise loose fitting rim. They commonly shoot for half of the real blow-off pressure.

The marketing department wants the number high, because many tire purchasers make the (unreliable) assumption that the higher the pressure rating, the better the quality of the tire.

Newbies often take these arbitrary ratings as if they had some scientific basis. While you’ll rarely get in trouble with this rote approach, you will usually not be getting the best possible performance.

Savvy cyclists experiment with different pressures, and often even vary the pressure for different surface conditions.[/quote]

I normally inflate mine to somewhere between 95 and 100psi (with both 23 mm and 25 mm tyres). Any softer and I know I’m risking pinch flats. Any harder and (strangely) I’ve found I’m a little more prone to punctures for other reasons. This is just my experience from 10 years here in Taiwan.