As anyone knows, the wheels of a road bike are one of the essential parts of the bike that allows it to spin on the road. Although, the fact that not so many people know is when to replace your road bike wheels.

Each rotation will affect the wheels of a bike in several ways, and the effects of riding on the wheels will differ according to the riding style of a person.

The whole weight of the bike, including the rider’s weight, is carried by the wheels, and it will get compressed from all the sides in each rotation.

Beyond everything, the wheels of a bike are the result of a combination of several parts together. As a result, every part can get affected by the rotations and other weather-related issues.

Like any other thing, road bike wheels also need to be replaced after using for a long term. Or, there are some situations in which you may be forced to change your road bike wheels. So, let us take a look at the different circumstances for changing the wheels.

Factors for Replacing Road Bike Wheels

Problems affect the Rims

In bikes that come with hand pull rim brakes, overtime braking can cause erosion in the sidewalls of the rims. Sometimes, there are some extra colorings of black shade so that the rider can notice when it starts wearing off.

Or, the chrome color might get flattened into a black shade. Even though these are just the starting point of the gradual erosion that leads to destroyed rims.

All these are not a fast process instead, it might take months or even years to happen during several rides you do on your road bike. Nowadays, most wheel manufacturers will add some indicator layers on the rim to indicate erosion to the rider.

At this point, you can either change the wheel completely or can check for the strength of the other wheel parts. If everything else other than rims can go a lot more, then you can change the rims alone easily.

Problems affect the hubs and Bearings

These are another set of parts in a wheel that can get destroyed by long-term use. Like the rims, with the rotation for a long time, the bearing and hub of the wheel will start getting flattened from the sides.

Besides, the dirt and other particles that get into these portions during the ride will help the erosion more alongside rotation. Finally, regular maintenance can help you keep the hub and bear for a little more time without wearing out.

As one of the main parts that support the whole structure of the wheel, you can never take wearing off of hubs or bearings not seriously. You can replace the hubs and bearing themselves if needed.

However, every wheel model in the market is not made to do this exchange of different parts. Especially, some road bike wheels that are made for racing purposes come with wheels that do not have the system to replace any of the parts from it.

Impacts of Crashes

During most bike accidents, the first thing to get a hit will be the front or back wheels of the bike. And the impacts of the crash will differ according to the pressure applied on the wheel by the crash.

It can make from small dents to completely ruin the wheel itself. Unfortunately, cracks and dents on the rims are not repairable, so replacing the wheel might be the only chance for a ride with the bike again.

However, if the impact only affected the rim and few spokes, then it is possible to replace those individual spokes and the rim. Doing this will help you with the money of a new hub, bearings, and the other healthy spokes.

In some accidents, multiple regions of the wheel can get destroyed. So now, it is best if you change the complete wheel itself to make sure about the safety of riding the bike and avoiding future problems.

Road Bike Wheel Sizes

You can get several sizes of wheels for your bike according to your height and comfort on the road. Wheels in all sizes have their own advantages and use. So, we can’t say one is better than the other.

However, we can say that one is better than the other specific cases. The most common wheel sizes now in the lead include 26″, 27.5″, and 29″ wheels.

Which wheels are the best for you is not confirmed according to other people’s words? Instead, it is your needs and comfort that choose the right wheel/tire for your bike.

The most common bike wheel used across the world is a 26″ wheel. Somehow, many bike riders misunderstood that 26″ wheels are no longer safe to use on bikes.

It is a big mistake that is spread by many marketers in the field right now. But, it is still safe and comfortable to ride with 26″ wheels on your bikes. After all, as mentioned, comfort is based on your physical dimensions and strength.

Otherwise, how did those riders, including extreme level athletes, survive with their bikes on 26″ wheels? So, there is no reason to worry about using a 26″ wheel on your bike.

These are mostly recommended now for a road bike used for normal needs like a long road trip. However, if you are routing for a racing-oriented size of wheels, then a 29″ wheel is the best one for you.

Although, this also currently fading into a section of touring bikes. The narrow size allows more aerodynamics when a 26″ offers more grip on the rough road conditions.

Types of Rims

A rim is another essential part of a wheel to which all the spokes will be connected. It is also one of the first impact regions alongside the tires that covers it from one side.

Different types of rims will help with the various types of bikes and riding you do across all kinds of terrains. For instance, if you are riding a bike for racing, a more aerodynamic model rim will be the best.

Like that, there are all kinds of bikes you can get from MTB rims, Road rims, and BMX rims. As the name suggests, all of these will be perfect for each kind of bike.

However, road bikes themselves can be used for normal daily uses, touring purposes, or high-speed races. You can get rims with different designs, shapes, and materials to take good advantage of doing any of these above-mentioned activities on your road bike.

One of the most common rim models is the traditional box model rim used in all kinds of conditions. This kind of rim has many spokes and has the advantage against the side wind that you may encounter on your riding route.

Another kind of rim is the deep-section rims that are the best for high-speed racing, requiring more aerodynamic performance. A deep-section rim will only have few spokes. Although, there is a disadvantage that these kinds of rims can only be safely used in calm conditions.

Strong winds make the riding very difficult with these kinds of rims and are not safe in harsh wind circumstances.


Here we went through some of the important factors about the wheels of bikes and when to replace your bike wheels.  In small words, erosion or accidental impacts are two main reasons for changing a bike wheel.

Besides, you can change the different parts of a wheel instead of changing the whole wheel itself. And you need to take good care of the beating and hub regularly to expand these parts’ lives.

Another thing you need to note is the color changes on the brake pad of the rim where the hand brake gets rubbed on each braking. Keeping good care of your wheels will offer more safety and long life to your bike and wheels.

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