If you are considering buying new wheels for your road bike, you should have in mind that is essential to choose the right type of tire in order to maximize all your potential.

For cycling road athletes, a bad choice of tire may compromise their performance, affecting comfort and speed. When buying your wheels, you should think about 3 important aspects. The type of terrain: flat and well-paved asks for light tires, while uneven terrain needs more resistant tires.

Tire width is the second point that must be considered. Most road riders use the 23mm profile, but others prefer to use 25mm or even 28mm because they feel safer and more comfortable. It just depends on each athlete’s preference.

In some cases, the usage of tubular wheels allows the cyclist to use an even more thin tire, until 19mm. Usually, the athletes prefer that width for time trials, where aerodynamics makes a huge difference.

The last critical point is tire pressure. Each type of tire needs a specific calibration, which is indicated by the manufacturer. In short: low-pressure tires provide more speed but are not recommended on rough terrain; Low-pressure tires require extra effort from the rider but are more stable on different surfaces.

Differences between bike tires

There are three tire types of bicycle road wheels, each of them has its advantages:


They are the most used on road bikes. Easy to install and maintain. They have an inner part that holds the tire and the inner tube. With high pressure, they keep the tire in the right place. They are usually the cheapest option.      width=


These are the most used tires on professional cycling. Lighter and faster than clincher tires, but also more expensive. The tires are fixed directly on the rim. Difficult transportation and the fact that doesn’t allow for patches are their main disadvantages.   width=


Mostly used for MTB, but there are road cyclists who also prefer this option. The tires are heavier and without an inner tube. It’s common to use a liquid inside the tire, which is able to cover and seal a puncture immediately. Thus, the risk of this type of accident is greatly reduced with the use of tubeless tires. However, they need a specific rim profile, which is usually more expensive than the other options. width=

In short, for cyclists who want to compete, investing in tubular tires is a great option. But, if the goal is only training, clincher is the best value for money option. This is definitely a point you should keep in mind when considering choosing a new pair of wheels because the rim type is essential to understanding which type of tire will be compatible.

Author: Tiago Torres, Segredos do Ciclismo