How to Remove and Clean Presta Valve Core

By : Mr Mamil
Updated :

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Valve core maintenance is an integral part of basic bike maintenance if you’re running a tubeless tire setup. Many cyclists often overlook this task, especially when topping up the sealant.

This article will discuss the steps to remove the valve core (with and without a tool) and clean it.

Why clean the valve core?

Over time, the tire sealant clogs up around the spring-loaded pin inside the valve. This causes the pin to get stuck, making it hard to inflate or deflate the tire. In some cases, the tire sealant completely blocks off the airway, making inflating impossible.

Should I clean or replace the valve core?

Replace the valve core if you’re unable to remove the clogged sealant. A valve core costs around $2/piece and can be considered a consumable part of the bike.

How to remove sealant from the valve core?

Use your fingers or a pricking tool in most cases to remove the old sealant. For stubborn sealants, any household cleaners with ammonia will do the job. Some cyclists soak the valve core in Windex Multi-purpose cleaner overnight.

How to remove the Presta valve core

The easiest way is to use the valve core removal tool. These days, they can come in various designs, but the way it works stays the same. The simplest form of the removal tool is a small, black piece of plastic with two holes; closed and open-ended. It usually costs around $1 to $2.

The tool grabs on the tiny flat section of the Presta valve core, allowing you to turn it counterclockwise to loosen it.

How to remove the Presta valve core without a tool

If you don’t have a valve core removal tool, you can use a needle-nose plier. Gently grip the valve core with the tip and turn it counterclockwise. Be careful not to use too much force to prevent ruining the threads.