How to attach solid tyres to a wheelchair

Updated February 21, 2017

Knowing general maintenance and how to make repairs to a wheelchair is of utmost importance if you live with someone who is dependent on a wheelchair for mobility. One part of a wheelchair that will need the most maintenance due to wear-and-tear are the tyres. There are several types of tyres, and one of the most common is the solid tyre, also known as the airless or snap-on tyre. These tyres are notoriously difficult to replace once the tread has worn down. You'll need the assistance of several tools to get the job done.

Lay the wheel flat on a table or work bench. This will put you in a proper position to install a solid tyre. Trying to do this on the floor or anywhere else will be to awkward in regards to manoeuvring the chair.

Use an oil-based lubricant around the rim so the entire area where the tyre will be installed is slick. Solid tyres are difficult to put on and the extra lubrication will help the tire slide into place.

Place the tyre on top of the rim and begin inserting the tyre by snapping it into the wheel.

Continue inserting the tyre around the wheel by using a prying tool to lift up the tyre and snap it into place. You'll need the prying tool since it will be nearly impossible to bend and stretch the solid tyre with your hands to fit the wheel.

Inspect the entire wheel to make sure the tyre has completely snapped into place. Use your prying tool to snap any parts of the tyre that are not sitting in the wheel properly.


Use a tyre tool rod if you think you do not possess the strength to install a solid tyre yourself. A tyre tool rod will stretch out the tyre for you while you work your way around the wheel.

Things You'll Need

  • Table
  • Oil lubricant
  • Prying tool
  • Tyre tool rod (optional)
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About the Author

David Montoya is an attorney who graduated from the UCLA School of Law. He also holds a Master of Arts in American Indian studies. Montoya's writings often cover legal topics such as contract law, estate law, family law and business.