Can You Put Tire Shine On Bicycle Tires? Tips And Tricks

Can you put tire shine on bicycle tires? This is not a question that has an easy answer.

The short answer is no, but there are some caveats to that response.

There are many products out there that claim they can be used for both car and bike tires, but the truth of the matter is most bicycle wheels will need something different than what works for cars.

Tire shine in particular should never be applied to bike tires because it could cause them to slip or skid when riding on pavement or other hard surfaces.

Can You Put Tire Shine On Bicycle Tires? Tips And Tricks

Reasons to never apply tire shine on your bicycle

1) Bicycle tires are not made to be shiny.

First of all, bicycle tires were never made to be shiny, and secondly, they are made to grip the road surface underneath them.

If you apply something like tire shine on your bike tires you stand a good chance of skidding out when you least expect it, such as when rounding a corner.

What happens is that tire shine makes your tires slick and causes them to lose their grip on the road, and once you skid there is nothing you can do to regain control.

2) Bicycle tires have different needs from car tires.

Bicycle tires need a certain degree of tackiness that allows them to grip the surface of the road as they roll over it.

They also require a certain level of resilience in the rubber so they don’t wear out too quickly and last for a long time.

Most of us think that more expensive tires are automatically better, but that is not always the case when it comes to bicycle tires.

3) Putting tire shine on a bicycle tire is a waste of money.

When you use tire shine on a bicycle, there’s a good chance that a large portion of it will end up being slung from the rear tire as you ride.

This means that you have basically wasted your hard-earned cash because most of this product was applied to the road instead of your tires.

Since tire shine is usually designed for car tires, it can also do damage to the wheel rims of a bicycle by making them rust more quickly.

4) Using tire shine on bicycle tires will often void your warranty.

Many of us are under the impression that bicycle manufacturers want you to keep their products in good working order, but that is not always the case.

For example, if you put tire shine on your bike tires and damage them in any way, it could void the warranty on your bicycle because many manufacturers see this as the direct result of the owner trying to make their bike look better than it should.  

How can I make my bike tire shine Without using a tire shine?

Cleaning your bicycle tires is all you need to do in order to make them look better.

However, if you insist on getting that “new tire” look then here are some things that could work for you.

1) Use a cleaner/degreaser

There are many bicycle-specific cleaners available these days, but your regular household cleaning products will get the job done just as well.

The key is to pick something that not only cleans the tire but also provides some shine or luster to it, such as Armor-All Autoshine or 303 Aerospace Protectant.

2) Use a cloth and tire cleaner

Another way you can make your bike tires look better without using a tire shine is to use a soft cloth and some tire cleaner.

Tire cleaners are available in spray cans, but you could also make your own by mixing four parts of water with one part of rubbing alcohol.

Spray the solution onto the surface of your tires, then allow it to sit for several minutes before using a clean cloth or sponge to remove it.

The key is to wipe away the solution in a circular motion so you don’t damage the tire.

3) Use silicone spray

Another way you can make your tires look better without using a tire shine is by spraying them with silicone water repellent.

This not only adds shine but it also helps protect your tires from the elements by adding a protective layer.

You don’t have to use a silicone-based spray, but it might be best since these types of products are designed not to damage rubber or plastic tires.

My final thoughts

Tire shine is good for cars because it’s on the road every day and only has to look nice for a short amount of time.

Bike tires, on the other hand, don’t need this extra protection on the road.

Putting tire shine on a bicycle tire is a waste of money.

When you use tire shine on a bicycle, there’s a good chance that a large portion of it will end up being slung from the rear tire as you ride.