How to “Boot” a Ripped Tire

You need:

  • Tire levers (optional)
  • Tire “boot”

If you mountain bike through rocky terrain or commute on rough roads, you could end up ripping your tire. Whether the rip is on the tread or the sidewall, it must be repaired so you can ride. Otherwise the tube will pop out the hole and you’ll get endless flat tires!

What you will want to do is “boot” the tire. That basically means to put a piece of material between the tire and tube to keep the tube inside the tire.

That piece of material could be anything tough – a piece of kevlar, an energy bar wrapper, or a dollar bill – just so it is bigger than the rip in the tire.

Once you have your “boot” handy, just slip it in between the tire and tube, and inflate. The tube should inflate like normal, and the boot should hold it inside the tire.

Now ride home and then get a new tire!

(Or just patch the tire if the hole is small enough.)