What PSI Is Needed for Mountain Bike Tires?

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Since mountain bike tires are wider, they don’t need as much air pressure as road bikes do. Ideally, a mountain bike’s tires will usually need 25 to 35 psi.

However, everyone rides their bike differently, so there is no perfect psi that works for every mounting bike tire. Certain things make a difference on what psi for mountain bike tires is needed, like how you ride the bike, what tires are on it, and what terrain it travels on.  

Even though every rider has different preferences, you can still get your mountain bike’s psi just right. Keep reading to learn more about what psi for mountain bike tires.

Why Lower Pressure Is Better for Mountain Bike Tires

Mountain bike tires on rough terrain

A lot of times people are under the impression that more pressure was better and they would aim to pump their bike tires up as much as they would go. These days, most mountain bike riders realize that doesn’t make for the smoothest ride out on the trails. 

One thing to keep in mind about the difference in psi between mountain bike tires and road bike tires is that a road bike is typically taken on the pavement while the mountain bike is taken off-road. A mountain bike’s tires are more likely to travel over rocks, dips, roots, and other off-road imperfections. 

If a mountain bike’s tires have too much pressure, the rider will be bouncing around every time they hit a bump. That is why lower pressure is always better in mountain bike tires. The rider will have more grip when the tires have a lower psi, as well as improved traction and comfort over climbs and descents. Lower psi also results in lower tire resistance as well.

How to Find The Right PSI for Your Mountain Bike

Since every rider has a different experience with their bike, there are a few things to keep in mind when determining the right psi for your mountain bike tires. Your weight is one of the main things that could affect the tire’s psi. This is because a lighter rider won’t need as much pressure in their tires as a heavier rider will. 

Every rider takes their bike to different spots. If you prefer riding on smoother trails and the bike doesn’t hit too many bumps, then you can get away with a lower psi. However, if you’re an extreme rider who likes to go riding where there are a lot of rocks and roots, then you will need more pressure to keep up with the adventures. 

One more thing that needs to be considered when determining how much pressure your mountain bike tires will need is how hard you ride the bike on the trails. Since a lower psi can benefit mountain bike riders by allowing more grip, it’s the better choice for people who ride more precisely. However, if you do travel in a lot of rocky areas, more pressure could protect your tire’s components. 

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Paul Tuthill
Growing up in Scotland, Paul developed a love for the outdoors and a desire for adventure from an early age.