How to Change a Bicycle Inner Tube when Bike Touring

If you have recently discovered that your bike has got a flat, this how to change a bicycle inner tube article will get you back on the road again in no time at all!

How to change a bicycle inner tube

How to change a bike inner tube easily

At some point during your bike tour, you will end up with a flat tire.

When you do, it will probably be on the back wheel, which means unloading all your bags in order to sort it out.

Whilst some people are happy to fix the flat by patching it straight away, it's far easier to simply swap in a spare inner tube.

Not carrying one? I highly recommend taking a spare inner tube on a bike tour, no matter how short the tour!

Take a look here for more essential items I take with me on every bike tour.

Step by Step guide to changing a bicycle inner tube

It's super-easy to change a bike inner tube. Here's my simple step by step guide to swapping an inner tube. You can even print it out!

How to Change a Bicycle Inner Tube when Bike Touring

How to Change a Bicycle Inner Tube when Bike Touring

A simple step by step guide to changing a bicycle inner tube. The process shouldn't take more than 5 minutes when you get the hang of it!

Prep Time 2 minutes
Active Time 5 minutes
Total Time 7 minutes
Difficulty Easy


  • Inner Tube
  • Inner tube Patch Kit


  • Tyre Levers
  • Bike Pump


  1. Get the flat end of the tyre lever or spoon between the tyre and rim, making sure to get under the inside edge of the tyre.
  2. Bend the tyre lever back towards the spokes.
  3. Hook the tyre lever under a spoke, or hold the spoon there.
  4. Move about 9 inches around the rim from the first tyre lever.
  5. Repeat steps 2 and 3.
  6. Now get your fingers under the edge of the tyre to start to force it off.
  7. Remove the tyre levers.
  8. Use your fingers or a tyre lever to force the rest of the inner edge of the tyre off of the rim. Once it starts moving it should be easy. Then take off the tyre and inner tube.
  9. Before inserting the new tube, run your fingers along the inside of the tyre and along the rim, feeling for any rough or sharp spots. You don't want another puncture now, do you!
  10. Inflate the new inner tube with just a pump or maybe two, and place it in the tyre. Put the valve through the valve hole on the rim and use your fingers to push on one side of the tyre. Try not to pinch the tube!
  11. Use your fingers to squeeze the tyre so that you are pulling the second edge of the tyre onto the rim. When you have some of the second edge on the rim, work your way round, squeezing to get more of the tyre on the rim. When you are almost all the way around, it may get hard to get the second edge of the tyre onto the rim. As more of the tyre gets on the rim, it will become hard work, so put some muscle into it!
  12. Pump up your tyre and bounce it a couple of times from a couple of inches onto the floor. now put it back in the frame and pedal off!

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.



More Bike Touring Articles

You might also want to check out these other bike touring tips and guides:

Adventure cyclist Dave Briggs bike touring the PanAmerican HighwayDave Briggs
Dave wrote this travel guide to patching an inner tube when bike touring after years spent cycling all around the world.

Check out two of his long distance bike tours here: Cycling from England to South Africa and Cycling from Alaska to Argentina.

Follow Dave on social media for travel, adventure and bike touring inspiration:

Leave a Comment

Skip to Instructions