How to Repair a Bicycle Tire Pump

Written by jonathan d. septer
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How to Repair a Bicycle Tire Pump
Typical standing floor style bicycle pump. (pressure image by Sergey Goruppa from

Repairing a bicycle tire pump is usually a simple task, but there are many different kinds of pumps, ranging from the old-fashioned foot pumps to traditional standing floor pumps to pumps that attach to a bicycle. The most common pump is the standing floor pump, and you can easily translate the knowledge used in fixing this style of pump to the other types. Service is usually performed on a pump when it begins leaking air, but following these steps as part of a yearly pump preventive maintenance schedule will probably increase the life of your pump.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • 6-inch adjustable wrench
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Hex-head wrench set: 2.5mm, 3mm, 4mm, 5mm and 6mm
  • Waterproof bearing grease
  • Clean cloth

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  1. 1

    Remove all attachments, such as the pump hose and the air gauge, by turning counterclockwise with the small wrench. Some pumps use a combination of small spherical parts and springs inside these attachment points to regulate airflow. Remove these parts, if applicable, and set them aside.

  2. 2

    Remove the retaining collar that attaches the pump body to the handle slide with a Phillips screwdriver or appropriate hex head wrench. There are typically two to four attachment bolts holding the collar to the pump; turn them counterclockwise to loosen. Once collar is detached, the handle slide and collar should easily separate from the main pump body. It is unnecessary to detach the pump body from the base stand.

  3. 3

    Inspect the round, flat attachment--the inner pump gasket--at the end of the handle slide. If it is dried, cracked or damaged, remove and replace it with an appropriate gasket easily found at or ordered by your local bicycle shop. If the part is in good condition, wipe the old grease off with a clean cloth and apply a thick layer of fresh grease. Set the greased handle slide aside.

  4. 4

    Inspect the pump hose for cracks or damage and remove the pump hose head from the hose. If damaged, obtain a new hose through your local bicycle shop or online. The hose head is attached with a hose clamp--a small metal or plastic clip encircling the hose at the attachment point--and will loosen with a Phillips screwdriver or 2.5 to 3mm hex head wrench turned counterclockwise.

  5. 5

    If the hose head is a permanent or fixed type, move to step 7. If the head is a removable type, detach and clean it, and apply fresh grease to the hose head attachment point.

  6. 6

    Reattach the clean, greased hose head to the hose. Turn the hose clamp attachment bolt clockwise to tighten. Set the hose aside.

  7. 7

    Wipe the old grease from the pump stand and base attachment points for the handle slide collar, hose and air gauge, and apply a thin layer of fresh grease to these points.

  8. 8

    Insert the greased handle slide and reattach the retaining collar to the pump stand by turning the attachment bolts clockwise to tighten.

  9. 9

    Apply a thin layer of grease and return the small pump parts for the hose and gauge attachments if applicable, then reattach the hose and gauge by turning the attachment points clockwise with the adjustable wrench.

  10. 10

    Test your pump on a bicycle tire to ensure the pump is working correctly.

    How to Repair a Bicycle Tire Pump
    A frame-attached bicycle pump (hand-priming pump image by Aleksandr Ugorenkov from

Tips and warnings

  • Make quick sketches of the way small parts are installed before removing them.
  • Some inexpensive pumps are not designed to be serviced and may break if your try to disassemble them. Check with your local bicycle shop before taking your pump apart.
  • Do not remove permanent or fixed pump hose heads should not be removed from the hose, because this will damage it so it will not longer work.

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