Caffélatex, valves and inner tubes
Caffélatex is used with success as puncture-preventative inside latex and butyl tubes, for tyres and tubulars. Knowing how to use Caffélatex, valves and inner tubes together is easy and might avoid problems down the road.
Being a synthetic latex, Caffélatex is not as intrinsically "sticky" as natural latex sealants, showing a lower tendency to clog valves and valve mechanisms.
Still, it's important to learn how to use it properly to take full advantage of the puncture protection, reducing the drawbacks to the minimum.
General tips for long lasting valves, when using sealants:
- to prevent clogging in the valve mechanisms, immediately inflate the inner tube after injecting Caffélatex through the valve, so that the air pumped inside will push any residual sealant inside, away from the valve mechanism.
- As a regular practice whenever inflating Caffélatex-treated inner tubes, valve should be kept at a 3 or 9 o'clock position, to avoid sealant leaks through the valve.
- Valves should always be closed after inflation.
What to do when clogging happens?
- With RVC valves, clean or replace the valve core.
- If the valve mechanism can't be removed, a droplet of Caffélatex Remover can save the day (or the valve, or the tubular).
What to do when clogging happens in presence of valve extensions?
Valve extensions, like our Caffélatex Valve Extension, fitted on replaceable valve core valves (threading the valve mechanism on top of the extension) reduce the internal valve opening from 4 to 2 mm, a size compatible with that of punctures usually sealed by Caffélatex. The sealant has obviously no way to distinguish the valve opening from an actual puncture, and might want to "fix" it. In similar cases the valve functionality can be easily restored removing the valve mechanism and inserting a spoke inside the valve extension, freeing the valve opening.
If the valve extension (acting more like an inflating extension) leaves the valve mechanism on the original valve, so that it's recessed inside the rim, freeing it becomes more difficult... but Caffélatex Remover is recommended.
Maximum repairable damage in a tube:
inner tubes stretch when inflated - being limited in their expansion only by the tyre - and punctures in a tube tend to change geometry and size depending on the inflating pressure. As punctures in a tube grow in size increasing the pressure, the maximum damage a sealant can repair in a tubeless tyre (where the puncture size and geometry don't change much with pressure) is bigger than that of an inner tube. A sealant can generally repair punctures up to 1 mm in tubes, while it's up to 4 or 5 times more in a tubeless tyre.
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