Are you a mountain biking maniac who finds solace in it? Being in nature is the best to soothe your mind and bring positivity inside you. Mountain bikes are the best for spiky trails, but you also need to be cautious. Excessive riding around the challenging trails can damage your tires, and they may need faster replacement.

Many people don’t even realize their MTB tire needs replacement which can cause them to get in an accident. Hence, you must know when to replace mountain bike tires. The average life of an MTB tire is two years maximum. However, poor maintenance can cause the tire’s life to decrease significantly. This article aims to educate you about mountain bike tires and when to replace them.

Signs that are a tell-tale your tire needs replacing

Although the average life of a tire is two years, yours can need replacement before the expected time. Sometimes, your tire may be screaming at you for a replacement, but you may ignore all the signs. Investing in a tire may seem like a lot, but it significantly helps make your ride better. In this section, we will discuss some signs that are a tell-tale your tire needs replacing. Here we go:

1. The frequent flat tire situation

Flat tires can happen to anyone, and the reasons can be several. A sharp thing may hit the tire and create a gush that releases gas slowly. You can get the tire fixed and go on about your day in such cases. Are you experiencing flat tires more frequently? You must look into the matter deeply if a flat tire situation is happening with you every time you go for a ride. One of the signs indicates your tire is probably too old and damaged. Replacing the tire with a new one can solve the issue.

2. Loss of traction

Accidents are unavoidable sometimes, and they can happen due to various reasons. One of the reasons most people fall on the trail and hurt themselves is loss of traction. Brakes and suspension play a considerable role in stopping action, but tire also plays a pivotal role. If your MTB tires do not have enough grip, you must avoid biking altogether. Old tires can cause loss of traction; hence, accidents become more frequent. You must change the tires if you can to increase your riding confidence. Trust us; you will see a massive difference in MTB performance.

3. Tire bubbling

You may have often heard of the word ‘Bubbling’ when talking about cars, bikes, and vehicles. The term ‘Bubbling’ is associated with tires which often indicates that the tire is not in a good position. You will have a lot of difficulty riding MTB with wobbly tires. The chances of accidents increase tremendously, and your performance falls significantly. Often you can sort the issue by getting your bike aligned, but you have to replace the tire eventually. New tires will increase the bike’s performance and let you push it to its optimal speed.

4. Before race

You probably do not need to replace the tire before every championship or important race event. However, you must do your best to aim for the win. One of the things you must consider before an MTB race is to replace the tires. You will notice you can handle the bike much more efficiently. The chances of you winning the race increase significantly. So, why not take the chance and do the best you can? You must ensure that your hard work does not waste because of a faulty tire. Also, check the pressure before a race to ensure it is as per PSI standards.

5. Visible Wear and Tear

One of the things that quickly gives off that your tire needs replacement is wear and tear. Nature is heavenly, but it is not very forgiving for the poor rubber tires. Excessive exposure of tires to the sun and constant skidding on a hard surface can cause the rubber to chip off. If you ride on rugged trails, your tire will instantly show some signs of torture. The threads will start separating, and the fabric material begins to show. Also, you will start to notice cracks on the tire walls which can be dangerous if you ignore them.

6. Poor handling

If you mountain bike on challenging trails, you need to ensure your bike is in excellent condition. If the tires lose their traction, potential accidents increase significantly. On the other hand, damaged tires are not the best as they decrease bicycle performance. You will feel like you have less control over the handle and higher paddle resistance. Changing tires will help significantly in dealing with poor performance.

7. Flat Spots on Tire

Flat spots on mountain bike tires are not always a sign that the tire needs to be replaced. It could simply mean that the tire pressure is too high. When the pressure is too high, it can cause the tires to wear down in certain areas. This is commonly referred to as a “flat spot.”
If you’re experiencing flat spots on your mountain bike tires, it’s important to check the air pressure first and adjust it accordingly. If the pressure is still too high after adjusting it, then you may need to replace the tires.

8. Fabrics shown through

One sign that your mountain bike tire is worn out is when you see fabrics showing through the rubber. If the tire has a lot of cuts or if the fabric is visible, it is time for a replacement. Riding on a bald mountain bike tire can be dangerous because it can cause you to lose control of your bike. Replacing your mountain bike tires before they are completely bald will help prevent accidents and make your ride a lot safer.

9. Flat Ridges

The flat ridges on mountain bike tires are important for traction and control when riding over rocks, roots, and other obstacles. However, when these ridges become too worn down, the tire can lose its grip and traction, which can lead to a dangerous situation while riding. It is important to know when to replace mountain bike tires based on the level of wear and tear they have sustained.

What Makes Bike Tires Wear Out

There are many reasons why bike tires wear out, but the main reason is simply due to use. No matter how good the quality of the tire or how well it’s maintained, it will eventually wear out from riding. However, there are some factors that can cause tires to wear out more quickly than others. Lets discuss them in detail

1. Terrain

There are a few key things to keep in mind when it comes to your bike tires and how they wear out. One of the most important is the terrain on which you ride. If you’re mostly riding on smooth pavement, your tires will last longer than if you’re riding on a lot of gravel or other rough terrain.

In general, mountain bike tires tend to wear out more quickly than road bike tires because they’re designed for rougher surfaces. However, there are now some mountain bike tires that are designed for pavement as well, so if you’re mostly riding on pavement, you can get a tire that will last longer.

2. Poor maintenance of Tire

One of the most common problems with bicycles is poor maintenance of the tires. This can lead to rapid wear and tear on the tires, which can cause them to need to be replaced more often than necessary.
There are a few things that you can do to help maintain your bike tires and keep them in good condition. One of the most important things is to make sure that you always keep them properly inflated. You should check the pressure regularly, and make sure that it is at the recommended level for your tires.

Another thing that you can do to help maintain your bike tires is to avoid using them on harsh surfaces. If you have to ride on rough terrain, try to find a way to do so that will not damage your tires.

3. Time

When it comes to bike tires, there are a lot of variables to consider. But one of the most common factors that leads to tires wearing out is time. Just like any other material, over time bike tires will lose their elasticity and durability. This means that the more you use them, the quicker they’ll wear out.

Tire TypeExpect Mileage Tire Should Last
Road Tires1,000 to 3,000 miles
High End Tires2,500+ miles
Racing Tires1,000+ miles
Touring TiresUp to 4,000 miles
Trail Tires3,000 miles to 8,000 miles

Intense Riding Style

Bikers who enjoy a more intense, daredevil style of riding can put extra wear and tear on their tires. In order to combat this, it’s important to be familiar with what makes bike tires wear out so that you can take steps to prevent it.
One of the main factors that contributes to tire wear is how much weight is being placed on them. When you’re doing tricks or taking sharp corners, your tires are under more pressure than when you’re just cruising around. This can cause them to wear down faster.

Tire quality

A good quality tire will have thicker rubber and be able to withstand more abuse. It will also have a tread that is designed for your type of riding. A mountain bike tire, for example, will have a different tread than a road bike tire.

You cannot push your tires more than their maximum life expectancy, but you can maintain it for better performance. Here is how:

  • Clean all the dirt and debris from the tire as it can cause corrosion of the rim faster.
  • Keep your MTB in a shaded area as the tires can be damaged in high-temperature.
  • Avoid skidding too much on abrasive and hard surfaces as it causes tires to wear out.
  • Do not purposely roll over sharp rocks and surfaces.

Do you need to change the front and rear tire at once?

No, it is not necessary to change the front and rear tires simultaneously. Inspect both the tires and change the visible wear and tear signs. If both tires are damaged, you can change both at once for better performance.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How long can I drive on a worn tire?

You can technically drive on them until they burst. However, we do not endorse doing this, as it can be very dangerous. Bald tires can cause you to lose control of your car while driving, and can lead to a serious accident.

What happens if you have worn out tires?

No one wants to have a blow-out on the highway, but it’s important to know what to do if you do. If you’re driving on bald or worn-out tires, there’s a greater chance that you’ll experience a blow-out.  Blowing a tire while driving can be very dangerous. It can cause you to lose control of your bike and lead to an accident.

Can you drive on a tire with no tread?

There’s no question that driving on bald tires is a risky proposition. Not only are you more likely to experience a blowout, but your bike is also less stable on the road. For this reason, it’s always best to replace bald tires as soon as possible.

When should I replace my mountain bike tires?

When the knobs in the tread are more than halfway worn down, you can see the threads beneath the rubber in places, or the tire has bulges in some spots, it is time to replace the tires.

How long should mountain bike tires last?

How long a mountain bike tire lasts depends on a variety of factors, including how often it is ridden, the type of terrain it is ridden on, and the rider’s weight. In general, mountain bike tires should last around 3,000 to 7,000 miles.


Mountain bikes are not easy to maintain; you need to keep them properly for better performance. You need to know when to replace mountain bike tires to avoid accidents. The tire may not show visible signs of damage, but MTB performance may be a tell-tale. So, look out for the signs and take action sooner.