What Is The Point Of A Presta Valve?(Pros and Cons)

Presta valve is a good valve you can use on your bike, it’s likely to be compared with Schrader valves.

The advantages of Presta valves are that they allow a higher air pressure but require a smaller hole in the rim.

Presta valve can also be purchased in different lengths to fit the profile of the rims.

What are Presta Valves?

What Is The Point Of A Presta Valve?(Pros and Cons)

Presta valve is a bike tire inner tube valve, that is more narrow and longer than Schrader valves.

Presta valve stem is manufactured out of metal and is also threaded from the top all the way down to the base.

  • The Presta valves taper toward the top and likely have a lock nut that secures the valve stem to the rim.

Presta valves have a removable inner core that can thread into the valve stem. It includes a little locknut on top that holds the valve closed when tightened.

There’s not any internal spring and when the locknut is loosened, Presta valves the pressure within the tube holds the valve closed.

Presta valves are a little more complicated to use, unlike the Schrader valve

How does a Presta valve work?

1. To allow air to go through the valve, you need to loosen the little locknut on top and make sure it does not loosen it too much therefore the nut doesn’t come off

2. You’ll then push the inner pin right down to open the valve and when it’s open, you will be able to put air in, let the air out, or check the tire pressure.

3. After you let the pressure from the pin, the air pressure within the tube will close the valve.

4. So now you tighten the top locknut to avoid the valve from opening or leaking.

Presta valves are used almost only on bikes and they can be used with both tubeless and tubed tires. Producers likely to place Presta valves on:

What are Presta valve’s other names?

Other names of Presta valves are Sclaverand valves (SV) or French valves (FV).

Presta valves were created to be used on bicycles, not motorcycles or cars and they are manufactured entirely out of metal. 

Presta valves are more secure when it comes to holding air pressure because they are slightly more advanced to use, it has a locknut rather than a spring to make sure closure.

They are typically found on the higher-end mountain, gravel, and road bicycles for improved performance.

What Are The Presta Valve Pros?

Presta valves have great advantages that you will definitely need on your bicycle.

1) There are different valve lengths for Presta valves:- Presta valves have several ranges of lengths such as 80, 60, 48, 40, and 32mm. keep in mind that you simply need longer valves if you are using deep rims, like carbon fiber aero rims. It is necessary for the valve to reach from the rim bed to the opposite of the rim.

2) Presta valves make wheels stronger:- Having smaller valve holes may help the wheels stronger and stronger wheels are more durable. They’ll stay true longer. If your rim accepts tires less than 28mm, you should be using Presta valves.

3) Presta valves can suit narrower rims:- In some road rims, Schrader valves won’t fit between the beads of the tire due to the narrow of rims, especially on the racing bicycles that use clincher tires. That’s where Presta valves come in because are narrow enough to suit between the beads.

4) Presta valves allow flat tires easier to inflate:- The Presta locknut on the base of Presta valves holds the valve against the rim and this avoids the valve from moving up and down in the rim when your tire is flat.

5) No need for valve cap:- Because of the nature of the design, Presta valves do not require any cap. They lock closed, but you can install a cap if you like.

6) Presta valves will stay straight in the rim:- The locknut will help the valve holds the valve perpendicular to the rim, this helps to avoid the Presta valve from sitting at an angle. When the valve sits straight, it looks great and is less to get damaged by the rim.

7). You are able to release pressure in a more controlled manner using your finger:- If you want to allow the air out of Presta valves, simply loosen the top locknut and slowly press down on the pin with your finger. No tools are required, you can do this if you overfilled your tires to allow the air out until they reach the proper pressure.

8) To convert Presta valves to Schrader valves you can use an adapter:- If you have installed the Presta valves on your bicycle and you no longer want them, you can install a simple converter. This will allow you to use a gauge or Schrader pump on Presta tubes.

9) Presta valves are associated with higher-end bicycles:- This point is about appearance. If you ride a high-end bicycle, you may absolutely want the more premium look of Presta valves.

10) No need to lose air pressure when you remove the pump or stop pumping:- This is very important when you are filling high-pressure road tires. The pressure in the tube keeps the Presta valves closed and when you remove the pump, you won’t lose any air pressure at all.

11) Presta valves are lighter:- Presta valves weigh a few grams less compares to Schrader valves. The lighter weight can lower rolling resistance.

12) Presta valves are many in cycling:- Nowadays Presta valves have become the standard. Any mid-range or higher mountain or road bicycle will come from the factory with Presta valves on their rims. Presta tubes are often in bicycle shops.

13) Presta valves can hold more air pressure:- Since road bicycle tires need to be inflated to 90-125 psi. Presta valves can handle that kind of pressure without any problem.

14) Presta valves may maintain pressure better:- Some cyclists claim that Presta can maintain pressure better. Presta valves can drop less pressure over time than Shrader valves, this is because the air pressure within the tube helps to hold the valve closed. Personally, I’ve never had issues with valves leaking only when they are in good condition.

What Are The Presta Valve Cons?

Presta also has disadvantages just like Schreader valves have.

1) Presta valves are a little more expensive:- Presta valves tubes can be more expensive than tubes with Shrader valves. Possibly due to they being considered more high-end.

2) It may be not easy to find Presta tubes and replacement parts:- Presta valve tubes are likely to be only available in online and modern bicycle shops. it’s not easy to find a replacement tube in a department store.

3) Some Presta valve cores can not be removed:- Especially the Older Presta valves. This may be an issue if you want to add puncture-resistant sealant to your tube if the valve gets damaged or the valve gets gummed up with dirt.

4) You can not use standard automobile tire pumps with Presta valves:- Because standard automobile pumps only work with Schrader valves. This means you can not just go to the local gas station to air up your bicycle tires, meaning you can’t use a normal air compressor. You need to have a pump that is compatible with Presta valves (that is designed for only Presta valves)

5) Presta valves may be a little harder to use:- Non-cyclists are not familiar with Presta valves. To check the pressure or pump up your tires, you first need to loosen the locknut on top of the valve by turning it counter-clockwise with your fingers. You can then attach your gauge or pump. If you forget to loosen the nut, the valve won’t let the air pass through. Don’t forget to tighten the locknut back down after removing the pamp so the valve doesn’t open and let the air leak out.

6) Presta valves are more fragile:- Presta valves can be more easily broken due to their tall and skinny design. The locknut may break off the top and the top section can get bent. You need to be a little bit more careful when pumping up your tires in order to avoid breaking or bending the skinny tip of the valve

7) You can’t fit Schrader tubes in a rim that has been drilled for Presta Valves:- Because the hole is too narrow to accommodate them, in order to use Schrader valves in your Presta rims, you must drill the valve hole out so it’s larger. This compromises wheel strength, but is not a good idea if your bicycle has narrow road rims. If your bicycle has wide MTB rims, you can drill larger valve holes and switch to Schrader valves, but if your rims are drilled for Presta valves, just stick with them.

Are Schrader valves better than Presta valves?

Schrader valves are mostly found on bicycles with wide rims. They are the same style you will find on most automobiles and they use an internal spring to let the inflation while keeping the valve closed

You can absolutely inflate this style simply with any regular air pump. You can also check out the Schrader valves’ pros and cons to choose that suits your bike.


In conclusion, Presta valves and Schrader valves are the most common valves nowadays, and which one is better can depend on your preference.

I love using Presta valves on my bicycle, but as for you I recommend also checking out the Schrader valves’ pros and cons