How to Use a Bike Pump – A Complete Guide

How to Use a Bike Pump

Many bikers out there know how to use a bike pump to fix issues by themselves. It’s a very good practice.

Solving some common issues related to the bike may be new if you are riding a bike as a new rider. Sometimes due to less tire pressure, your bike may work slower than usual which is a common scenario to face as a biker. If you know how to use a bike pump properly then you can fix it and have a continuously smooth ride.

Pumping the bike tires with the proper amount and technique is a very essential task of a biker. There are different types of bike pumps that require different techniques to use while pumping the tires. In this article, we are representing different bike pumps and how you can use them properly.

Types of Bike Pumps

You should know the type of bike pump that you have. You cannot pump your tires only by holding the bottom of the pump with your feet. You also have to know the type of pump and how to use it effectively.

Floor Pump

A floor pump is a commonly used pump that can be kept on the back of your car or any corner of your home. This tall pump can be held at any place by placing the feet on the stand of the pump at the bottom.

Frame Pump

Frame pumps are usually kept on the top tube of a bike and it can pump up flat tire whenever you need to. This long, slender pump needs fewer strokes to pump a tire and create higher pressure. It is an important tool while you are on the road with your bike.

Hand Pump

Hand pumps are ideal for emergency or occasional use and it’s portable. These pumps are small in size and the perfect tool to keep while traveling.

CO2 Inflators

A CO2 inflator can pump tires rapidly and efficiently unless you are out of CO2 inflators. These pumps can be used as an alternative to hand pumps. Standard 700*23c road tire can be inflated to 100psi. These canisters can be used once so you are out of luck if you have only one.

Also Check: Best Mountain Bike Floor Pumps

Types of Pump Needed

To determine the pump type, you have to check your bike tires’ valve. Generally, two types of tire valves named Presta and Shrader are commonly available in the market. Presta is a tall valve with a skinny build that includes a small nut on its top. Schrader is a black tire valve that looks similar to a car tire valve.

Choosing the Right Pump

It’s a common mistake for a bike owner to use the wrong bike pump while pumping the tires. To avoid this mistake, you should be careful about selecting the compatible pump for your tire’s valve. Some bike pump includes a dual pump head which you can modify whereas other models are simple.

To inflate the tire, you just need to attach the pump to the valve of the tire and start inflating. If the tire does not inflate then you may have chosen the wrong pump for your bike.

How to Use a Bike Pump
How to Use a Bike Pump

Removing Cap from the Tire Valve

Removing the cap from the tire valve is very easy and it must be done before attaching the pump to your tire valve. You have to spin the nut of the cap in a counterclockwise direction to open it. After opening the cap, don’t forget to place it so that you don’t lose it.

Open Valve of the Tire (If Presta Valve)

If you have a Schrader valve you can skip this step but in case if you have a Presta valve then you should open the valve first. Unscrew the valve after several turns and take left turns than right turns. You have to use needle-nose pliers to loosen the valve cap when you can’t open it normally.

Attaching the Bike Pump Properly With the Valve

This is another easy step to complete that includes some important things to remember. After removing the cap, you have to loosen the core and press down the nozzle firmly on the valve.

Your tire will not expand while pumping and the air will dodge from the tube if the pump head is not attached properly. To pump properly, you have to make sure that the pump head is properly attached to the valve.

Pulling and Pushing the Pump Lever

After joining the head with the valve, you need to pull the handle of your bike pump and push it down to inflate the tire.

Applying Optimum Pressure

It is wise to use a tire gauge to measure the air inside your tire. Get the necessary info from the body of the tire before pumping it. Now, use the suggested pressure value and pump uphill the given number. You can also touch the tire after pumping for a while to determine if it is inflated properly or not.

Dethatching the Pump Nozzle

You should not rush while dethatching the pump nozzle from the valve. You have to lose the nozzle by flipping the switch that is located on the pump head.

Closing the Cap or Valve

Now you have to close the valve by screwing it in a clockwise direction and replace the dust cap. You should put the dust cap back in its position when you are done pumping the tire.


After opening the tire of your bike, support it with your feet and pump up the tube. The nozzle will not come off the valve if you can follow this step.

You should carry extra tubes and patches while riding. It is recommended to use the extra tube if your tube is flattened. Patch your flattened tube later to minimize the damage to the tube.

Check your tire condition routinely because the air inside it may decrease over time. Weather conditions can also deflate the air pressure of the tire.


Our mentioned steps will surely assist you to use a bike pump properly. By following the mentioned process of how to use a bike pump, you can have a smooth ride and avoid extra hassle even if you have to pump the tire.

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