Can I Use A Presta Tube In A Schrader Rim?

Can I Use a Presta Tube in a Schrader Rim

There are cases where you go to purchase a tube for your bicycle and will not find the specific one you want.

It is often due to a shortage in supply; however, there may be a part you can use in place of the specific tube. 

Do not expect another tube to be 100% effective and efficient as the real one. Therefore, deciding whether to use a Presta tube in a Schrader rim becomes difficult.

Yes, you can use a Presta tube in a Schrader rim. Although a Presta tube is not a perfect fit for a Schrader rim, use a Schrader – Presta adaptor to make it fit. The adaptor is a ‘grommet,’ which helps prevent the tube from puncturing around the valve stem.

Do Presta Valves Work on Schrader Rims?

Can I Use a Presta Tube in a Schrader Rim

Yes, Presta valves work on Schrader rims, but it comes with a few risks. Ordinarily, a Schrader rim is wider than a Presta valve, exposing your rim to sand, mud, and water.

However, you can use a grommet to lessen the risks involved in using Presta valves on Schrader rims.

A Presta valve is a substitute for a Schrader valve, so you use a Presta in the absence of a Schrader.

Due to the unevenness of the Presta and Schrader valve, the rim of a Schrader is wider. One of these risks is exposing your tube to the particles on the ground.

You also risk bursting your bicycle’s tube when you use a Presta valve in the Schrader rim.

Although a Presta valve fits into the Schrader rim, it slightly exposes the space around the rim.

It, in turn, paves the way for sand and other particles on the ground to find their way into your tube.

The more pressure you put into your tube while using a Presta valve on a Schrader rim, the likelihood of bursting your tube.

At higher pressure, the Presta valve protrudes and presses against the tube. And it will burst the tube of your bicycle if it continues.

So, a Presta valve that works on a Schrader rim does not make it void of risks. However, there are ways you can control the risks involved to the barest minimum.

At best, it will reduce the chances of bursting your tube and picking foreign materials into your tube.

How Do You Use Presta to Schrader?

You can use Presta to Schrader by reducing the tube’s pressure or using the Presta valve’s tension nuts.

It depends on the situation’s urgency and the duration you want the Presta on the Schrader. There are other basic ways to use a Presta valve on a Schrader rim.

I will never recommend using a Presta on a Schrader for a month. Notwithstanding, we cannot help most things, and that is why we often take risks.

Imagine if a delivery guy has an issue with his Schrader valve, and they tell him that the Schrader valve is not available.

Since he would not like to risk his job, he would have no choice but to use a Presta valve as a substitute.

It depends on whether you want to use it for a short term or longer. Luckily, there are a couple of ways you can safely use Presta to Schrader.

#1. Short term

  • Cut some tubes and use them to cover the likely spaces around the Schrader rim or put them beneath to handle the protruding valve.
  • You can also use wrapping tape to make the Presta valve bigger and cover the likely spaces around the rim.
  • Use the tension nut that mostly comes with the Presta valve to breach the gap around the rim.
  • High pressure is the surest way of bursting your tube, so stick to a lower pressure when using the Presta valve, preferably 60 psi maximum.

#2. Long term

  • Make a separate hole opposite the original hole to install a Presta rim.
  • Use a grommet to seal the hole around the rim.

Although drilling another hole in your bicycle rim may sound risky, it is not as risky as you think.

However, a grommet is the safest way to use a Presta valve on a Schrader rim. It is because the grommet is the special equipment for this specific purpose.

Are Schrader and Presta Tube Interchangeable?

Schrader and Presta’s tubes are not interchangeable. Although you can manage to use a Presta valve on a Schrader rim, it is inappropriate to say they are interchangeable.

Using Schrader and Presta tubes interchangeably tempers with the integrity of your tube, so it is best you stick to one tube.

A Schrader tube is a general provision for the automobile industry. That is why you see it on car and motorcycle tires as well.

For this reason, a Schrader tube set is more popular and used widely than a Presta tube.

More so, a Presta tube is a new development only for the new generation of bicycles.

These tubes are built differently with just the same functions. So it is unethical to say a Schrader and Presta tube are interchangeable.

Are Presta and Schrader Valves the Same Diameter?

No, a Presta and Schrader valve is completely different in diameter. A Presta valve measures approximately six (6mm); a Schrader valve is eight (8mm) in diameter.

Schrader valves are two (2mm) larger in diameter compared to Presta valves.

The actual measurements of Presta and Schrader valves are 5.92mm and 7.83mm, respectively.

The difference will be 1.92mm, while the approximate values are 6, 8, and 2. That is the reason why the rim of a Schrader tube is wider than a Presta rim.

Which Is Better, Presta or Schrader Tube?

Presta tube is inarguably better compared to a Schrader tube. Unlike a Schrader tube, a Presta tube is a dedicated tube that is specifically suited and constructed for a bicycle. 

A Presta tube has extra parts that help to secure and lock the valve to prevent leakage. The differences between the two tubes make the Presta tube a better choice.

Below are the differences between a Presta and a Schrader tube.

Presta tubeSchrader tube
The Presta valve is tall and slim.The Schrader valve is short and wide.
It does not have any cover around them and is completely metallic.It has a rubber coating around them.
It uses the pressure in the tube and tire to control airflow.Schrader valve controls airflow direction in one way with a spring-loaded check valve.
It reduces in thickness, making the top pointed.It is the same size from top to bottom. 
It is spiral-threaded from top to bottom.Only the top of the valve is spiral-threaded.

A Schrader tube can be better than a Presta tube when you speak of availability and ease of use.

Since the Schrader tube is a product for the entire automobile industry, it will be available everywhere.

A Presta tube will be scarce due to the build of use on modern bicycles alone. A Presta tube is more secure even though a Schrader tube is easier to use.

Also, unlike a Presta tube where you need to unscrew the cover before pumping, Schrader is direct. It does not have any cover, so fix your pump and blow in some air.


You can use a Presta valve in a Schrader rim when there are no alternatives. However, you are risking the reliability of your tube since the Schrader rim is wider than the Presta valve.

Therefore, using Presta to Schrader does not mean they are interchangeable.

Josh Matthews

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