Q: Everybody says converting my mountain bike tires to tubeless would reduce the number of flats I have. Is that true? A: It is true you’ll get less flats with a tubeless system.Generally with tubeless, instead of an inner tube, your tire is filled with a fluid that seals the tire to the rim. It’s a latex solution that’s self-healing, so it cuts down on pinch flats and small puncture flats. But the real advantage of tubeless is that you can lower your air pressure, giving you a completely different “feel” on the trail. With lower air pressure, your tire will absorb more of the rocks and roots underneath, giving you a more cushioned, less bouncy ride.
—Van Moralis, mechanic at Blackwater Bikes in Canaan Valley, W.Va.