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Electric Scooter Tires: A Beginner’s Guide

From solid rubber to pneumatics, street to off-road tread, and size to shape, there are a lot of factors that determine the performance of an electric scooter based on its tires.

In this guide, we're going to run through the different types of tires, help you find the right kind of tread for your specific needs, and explain how varying tire profiles affect ride quality and performance.

We'll also share expert tips on how to prevent flats, as well as step-by-step guides on how to fix, replace, and upgrade your tires.

Electric Scooter Tires

From pneumatic to honeycomb, learn about different types of tires.

Learn how different tire treads perform across varying terrain.

Discover how size and shape affect ride quality and performance.

Learn about common causes of flat tires.

Discover the steps you can take to prevent flat tires.

Step-by-step guides on how to fix and change damaged tires.

Tires Types: Which is Best?

Air-Filled (Pneumatic)

Air-filled tires are the most common type of tire found on electric scooters. They’re widely considered to be the best because they provide good grip and are excellent at absorbing shocks and vibrations.

You’re most probably familiar with air-filled tires because they’re used on many other vehicles, including bikes, motorbikes, and cars. However, not all are made equal.

Inner Tube

These tires have a protective outer tire and an air-filled inner tube. They’re easy to repair because the inner tube can be quickly patched or replaced.

Pneumatic Inner-Tube Tire     


Like cars, tubeless electric scooter tires have a thick exterior wall that has an airtight seal against the rim of the wheel hub. They’re tougher than those with inner tubes but are harder to repair if you get a flat.

Pneumatic Tubeless Tire

No Flat Tubeless

These borrow the same design as tubeless tires, but inside is a thick gel-like coating that protects against punctures and flats.

If the tire gets penetrated, the gel flows into the hole to seal the gap and prevent air from escaping.

No-Flat Tire


Solid tires are most often found on kids' scooters, as well as those that are destined for the budget market. However, a handful of premium models are equipped with them for the purpose of low-maintenance design.

Thanks to their solid interior they never get punctured or go flat. However, two major drawbacks are that they offer little to no shock absorption and that they have significantly less traction – especially on wet surfaces.

Solid Rubber

Like skateboard wheels, these are completely solid, and heavier than air-filled tires. There’s very little shock absorption and traction is poor.

Solid Rubber Tire


These are rubber tires with a network of holes to reduce their weight and increase shock absorption. The idea is that the air pockets allow the tire to flex, therefore delivering a more cushioned ride, whilst also reaping the rewards of a low-maintenance design.

However, despite their attempt at being more cushioned, ride quality is only fractionally better than their solid counterparts.

Honeycomb Tire


Filled with polyurethane foam, these are solid but lighter than rubber tires. Like honeycomb tires, they are designed to try and alleviate the lack of shock absorption. However, they have very little give so comfort is still an issue and traction remains low.

Foam Tire

Tire Tread: What’s Right For Me?

The tread of a tire is the grippy surface that maintains traction with the ground.

Different tread patterns provide varying levels of grip and make a tire more or less suitable for different terrain. Some treads can even prevent damage to your tire and protect against flats.


Street tires are slick but with a light pattern. This means they grip well on the flat surface of the road and are harder to wear than racing tires.

However, the shallow pattern means that they don’t cope well with loose or gritty terrain.

Street Tire

Hybrid (Terrain-Agnostic)

Hybrid tires are moderately patterned with a deep tread. They’re suitable for a range of different terrains stretching from well-maintained urban roads to country tracks.

Hybrid Tire


Designed specifically to be taken off-road, these tires feature three-dimensional tread patterns that are knobbly. This helps them to maintain traction on loose surfaces.

They can also be used while riding over streets and paved environments, but because of their shape, they limit the scooter from hitting its top speed. They can be loud, too.

Off-Road Tire


Perfect for extreme conditions, snow tires are studded, knobbly, and heavily patterned. The deep tread combines with metal studs to help them grip surfaces covered in snow and ice.

Snow Tire


Racing tires are slick and have no pattern. This means that the entire surface is in contact with the ground to ensure extreme traction at all times.

While these are ideal for fast-paced and aggressive riding, they’re less suitable for everyday use because they wear out quickly and don’t perform well on rough surfaces.

Racing Tire

Tire Size & Shape

Understanding Tire Size

Common Tire Sizes

Scooter tires come in a range of shapes and sizes. Generally, cheaper, less powerful scooters have smaller wheels and larger more expensive models have bigger wheels. The most common tire sizes are:

Tire Height (Inches)Tire Width (Inches)

Short vs Tall: Pros and Cons

The height of a wheel influences the stability and performance of a scooter.

Tall wheels provide greater ground clearance, a smoother ride, and better momentum. They also roll over bumps and obstacles easier and they don’t sink as much into dirt or other loose terrains. Plus, because they retain inertia better, they coast more, and as a result, lead to greater range over small wheels.

Short vs Tall Tires

On the other hand, small wheels are generally cheaper to produce and designed for lower-powered scooters. They can be more maneuverable at low speeds, which is why they’re often found on slow-budget models. Unfortunately, though, they have less ground clearance, transmit bumps and jolts to the rider much more severely, and don’t deliver the same level of handling as those that are bigger.

Narrow vs Wide: Pros and Cons

Wide tires have a bigger contact patch with the ground, thereby improving traction for acceleration, braking, and general riding. They also provide more stability.

Narrow vs Wide Tires

The downsides are that wider tires require more force to turn from side to side, but they do promise better cornering at speed. Narrow tires are, therefore, more nimble at slow speeds but don’t provide as much stability, and are more likely to lose traction in wet conditions.

The Correlation Between Tire Size and Motor Power

As tire size increases so too does motor power.

Small vs Large Tire and Motor

Motors are mounted in the scooter’s wheel hubs, so the size of the tire somewhat reflects the size of the motor. For instance, a budget scooter with a small 36V 350W motor may only have tires that measure 8.5 inches in diameter, while an ultra-performance model with 72V 2000W motors may have 11-inch tires. Ultimately, the more powerful the motor/s, the larger the tires.

This is why the scooter community refers to different models by their tire size (i.e. 10-inch or 11-inch) – it's a quick way to categorize performance.

Understanding Tire Shape


Tires with a rounded front-on profile make a scooter more nimble.

Apollo Ghost 2022 Push Tire

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t rotate the handlebars when you want to turn, but rather lean in the direction that you want the scooter to go. While leaning, the scooter goes from a 90-degree upright angle to a 50 to 70-degree tilt.

As the scooter rolls over, so do the tires, and it’s here where a rounded profile lends itself to better handling than those that are square in their design. Because the tire is rounded, it ensures that a large surface area remains in contact with the road, meaning you can lean into the corners while maintaining traction. This is vital for fast electric scooters since it means you have as much control in the turn as you do on the straight.


Tires with a square front-on profile provide a wide contact patch with the ground while riding in a straight line. This makes them ideal for fast acceleration and quick braking.

SPLACH Twin Solid Rubber Tire

However, square tires don’t provide as good handling as those that have a rounded profile. As you lean into corners, they roll onto their edges, meaning grip is lost. Under these circumstances, square tires can slide out from underneath you.

Common Causes of Flat Tires


Over-inflated tires can cause a host of issues, including:

  • Smaller contact patch, meaning less traction
  • Less shock absorption since the tire is unable to soak up bumps
  • Compromised handling
  • Reduced braking performance
  • Uneven tread wear since the center of the tire bows out and wears first
  • Risk of a blowout, which could lead to an accident

Electric Scooter Being Pumped Up


Under-inflation is one of the leading causes of electric scooter tire failure. If tire pressure is too low, it can cause many issues, including:

  • Increased rolling resistance, and therefore increased fuel consumption as a result of the motors working harder
  • Sidewalls of the tires can become misshapen and bulge out, leading to uneven tread wear
  • Compromised handling, especially steering
  • Reduced braking performance
  • Excessive heat build-up
  • Reduces the load that the scooter can carry

Electric Scooter With Flat Tire

Improper Installation

If a tire is incorrectly installed it increases the chance of getting a flat.

For inner tubes, incorrect installation can cause them to become tangled or bunched up, thereby putting pressure on certain areas of the tube and tire.

For tubeless tires, it's vital to make sure that their inner edge is intact and fits closely with the rim.

And the final thing you need to be mindful of is the direction of a tire’s rotation. Installing a tire backward will result in it wearing down faster. It’s also detrimental to your scooter’s overall performance since the tires aren’t able to grip the road as well.

Most tires will indicate rotation via an arrow, but if your tires don’t have this, then you need to make sure that the tread is always pointing forward.

AnyHill UM-1 Pneumatic Tire

Punctures From Sharp Objects

Sharp objects such as nails, glass, and even rocks are the most common causes of flat tires.

They quickly damage the tire by either splitting the tread or penetrating through it.

Electric Scooter Tire Rolling Over Glass

Strong Impacts From Aggressive Riding

When a tubeless tire hits a rock or curb, it can break the seal between the tire and the rim. For tires with inner tubes, if it’s hit hard enough, the impact can create enough pressure to burst the tube.

Josh Doing a Wheelie on an Electric Scooter


Overheating is either caused by improper inflation, or due to riding conditions (i.e. a hot summer day).

In general, tires lose or gain 1 PSI for every 10℉ change in temperature. As previously discussed, over and under-inflation can lead to significant tire damage, so if the temperature does spike then be sure to adjust your tire’s PSI accordingly.

If you don’t adjust the pressure and let it build as a result of overheating, tires can become distorted, leading to weak patches.

General Wear & Tear

As tires age, they get worn down and can develop cracks. After a while, these damaged areas can work their way deeper in the tread and eventually let air escape – this is most likely to happen when a worn tire bead is no longer resting on the rim as it should.

Similarly, a malfunction or leak in the valve can be the culprit and slowly let the air out of the tire.

Electric Scooter Tire Valve

How to Prevent Flat Tires

Inflate Tires to the Correct Pressure

PSI stands for pounds per square inch and is the measurement used for tire pressure. The higher the PSI, the more pressurized the air is inside the tire.

Every tire comes with a recommended PSI value that can be found in the scooter’s user manual. We recommend inflating your tires to this value because properly inflated tires are less likely to get damaged and have been configured to get the best performance from the scooter.

Inflating Electric Scooter Tire

Add Tire Sealant / Slime

Sealant can be squeezed inside a tire via its valve. Once injected it coats the inner surface, meaning it flows into punctures to prevent air from escaping. It’s best to use tire sealant as a preemptive measure.

Electric Scooter Tire Slime

Install Tire Liners

Tire liners are made to fit between your tire and the inner tube. If anything penetrates through the outer shell of the tire, the liner provides added protection to prevent the tube from being punctured.

Electric Scooter Tire Liner

Clean Regularly

Regularly removing dirt and debris that’s accumulated on your tires will reduce their wear and get rid of any sharp items that may have become attached.

Reduce Sudden Braking & Wheel Spinning

Sudden braking and wheel spinning heat up tires making them more susceptible to uneven wear, which can eventually lead to flats.

Solid tires can even become deformed if they’re mistreated. Excessive heat build-up combined with skidding can wear away at the tread that’s in contact with the road.

Electric scooters with anti-lock braking systems (ABS) help prevent tire wear by sensing when the wheels are about to lock and applying optimal braking pressure to prevent them from skidding.

Josh Braking on the INOKIM Ox

Replace Old Or Worn Tires

The older a tire is, the more likely it’ll develop a crack or flat. It’s essential that you regularly check your tires and replace any that look old or worn out. A good indicator of this is if the tires are going bald. By this, we mean inspecting the tread pattern to see if it’s too low.

How to Fix Flat Tires

How to Fix an Inner Tube (and Outer Tire)

  1. Deflate the tire
  2. Unscrew the bolts that hold the axle to the forks
  3. Ease the wheel out from between the forks.
  4. Remove any brake units from around the wheel (if necessary)
  5. Line the rim of the wheel with warm soapy water.
  6. Now use a tire spoon to pry the tire off the wheel hub.
  7. Once the outer tire, is off the inner tube should come away from it with ease.
  8. Reinflate the tube and inspect it to see where the air is escaping.
  9. If it’s hard to find the puncture, submerge it in water and look for where the bubbles are coming from.
  10. Mark the puncture with a permanent marker then deflate the tube.
  11. Use sandpaper to scrape the area around the puncture.
  12. Clean the area with an alcohol wipe and leave to dry.
  13. Position an adhesive patch over the puncture and press it down to ensure it’s sealed.
  14. Put the tube back into the tire.
  15. Slide the tire over the wheel hub and complete steps 4, 3, and 2 in reverse. (At this point, the wheel should be attached to the scooter as it was when you started this process).
  16. Reinflate the tube and tighten the valve cap.

To help you with this step-by-step guide, take a look at the video below. While your scooter may be different from the one shown, the fundamental process of fixing/replacing an inner tube is shown.

While the above is the recommended method to repair inner tubes, you can also take preemptive measures by installing tire sealant too. To do this, follow the steps below:

  1. Once you have completed the steps above, deflate the tire.
  2. Use a valve core removal tool (included in the box when you buy tire sealant) to remove the core from the valve and gain access to the interior of the inner tube.
  3. Remove the cap from the tire sealant to allow it to flow.
  4. Squeeze the prescribed amount of sealant into the tube.
  5. Reinstall the valve core with the removal tool.
  6. Reinflate the tire.
  7. Spin the tire to evenly distribute the sealant.

How to Change a Tubeless Tire

  1. Deflate the tire
  2. Unscrew the bolts that hold the axle to the forks
  3. Ease the wheel out from between the forks.
  4. Remove any brake units from around the wheel (if necessary)
  5. Line the rim of the wheel with warm soapy water.
  6. Now use a tire spoon to pry the tire off the wheel hub.
  7. Once the tire is free, it can now be repaired or replaced.
  8. To get the new tire on the wheel, use a tire spoon to hook the lip of it over the rim of the wheel hub.
  9. After completing the step above, you should be left with a tire that is half on/half off the wheel hub.
  10. Now, you need to get three or four zip ties.
  11. Feed the zip ties from one side of the tire through to the other. Make sure to spread them around the tire.
  12. Squeeze the tire and have another person tighten the zip ties. This will bunch the tire together, making it far easier to slide over the wheel hub. You may need to use a tire spoon to leverage the rest of the tire onto the hub.
  13. Then, once the tire is sitting over the hub, cut one side of the zip ties, and pull the remaining parts of them through the other side.
  14. Inflate the tire.
  15. Reattach the wheel to the scooter.

To help you with this step-by-step guide, take a look at the video below. While your scooter may be different from the one shown, the fundamental process of replacing a tubeless tire is shown.

How to Change a Solid Tire

  1. Before you begin the process of replacing a solid tire, you first need to fill a bucket with hot water and lay the new tire in it. This will make it more pliable for when you need to stretch it over the wheel hub.
  2. Unscrew the bolts that hold the axle to the forks.
  3. Ease the wheel out from between the forks.
  4. Remove any brake units from around the wheel (if necessary)
  5. Line the rim of the wheel with warm soapy water.
  6. Now use a tire spoon to pry the tire off the wheel hub. Or, if your tire has air pockets, poke a screwdriver through them to leverage the tire away from the hub. You can make this process a little easier if you use a heat gun or hair dryer to heat the tire.
  7. Once the tire is free, it can now be replaced.
  8. Next, get the new tire that’s been sitting in a bucket of hot water.
  9. Use a clamp or vice to hold one side of the tire and wheel together. This will ensure it doesn’t move or pop out as you leverage the rest of the tire onto the hub.
  10. With a tire spoon, go around the tire to pop it over the hub. Be careful to not apply too much pressure because you can damage the rim.
  11. Make sure that all the edges line up correctly with the rim.
  12. Reattach the wheel to the scooter.

To help you with this step-by-step guide, take a look at the video below. While your scooter may be different from the one shown, the fundamental process of replacing a solid tire is shown.

Why You Should Choose an Electric Scooter With Split Rims

Changing your scooter's tires can be a long and complicated job; however, if your scooter has split rims it will take half the time and be less stressful.

A split wheel rim can be unbolted and pulled apart, letting the tire slide off the hub more easily. If the scooter doesn’t have a split rim, then you have to forcefully pry the tire on/off the rim using a tire spoon.

To see this in action, watch the video below (04:03-04:30):

Where to Find Replacement Tires

The first place to check when searching for replacement tires is the website of the brand or retailer that you purchased your scooter from.

To help you find the correct parts, we've listed some popular scooter brands below and linked to retailers that sell tires for each.

Scooter BrandReplacement Tires
ApolloGet Tires
DualtronGet Tires
EMOVEGet Tires
FluidGet Tires
GoTraxGet Tires
KaaboGet Tires
MercaneGet Tires
NAMIGet Tires
TurboantGet Tires
VarlaGet Tires


How Many Miles Do Electric Scooter Tires Last?

Based on expert data, most electric scooter tires last between 1,500 and 3,000 miles. However, it depends on how well you maintain them, how regularly you use them, and your riding style.

When Should You Replace an Electric Scooter Tire?

Unlike cars, there are no legal requirements for electric scooter tires to have a minimum tread depth.

As a result, you should replace your tires based on their condition.

Can I Swap My Tires With Those From a Different Brand?

You can swap your scooter tires for those of a different brand as long as they are the correct size. Most scooter tire manufacturers use standard sizing so it should be relatively easy to find the correct replacement.

– CST vs PMT: Which is Best?

Cheng Shin Tires (CST) are made by the world’s largest manufacturer of bicycle and scooter tires. As a result, the vast majority of electric scooters are equipped with them.

CST vs PMT Electric Scooter Tires

On the other hand, Pauselli Model Tires (PMT) is an Italian manufacturer of high-performance tires. We tested PMT tires on the NAMI Burn-e 2 and the difference in performance was night and day. They had outstandingly good grip, wheel spin was controlled, and the scooter felt glued to the ground, propelling you forward and around sharp corners with a complete sense of control.

Can I Swap Solid Tires For Pneumatic Tires? And Vice Versa

Most scooters that are equipped with solid tires have been designed in this way for a specific reason, and consequently, they shouldn’t be swapped for pneumatic ones.

However, in some cases, you can swap them but it’s always best to check with the manufacturer. The same can be said for swapping pneumatic tires for solid ones.

Can I Swap Smaller Tires For Larger Tires? And Vice Versa

Smaller tires can’t be swapped for those that are larger, and larger tires can’t be swapped for smaller ones. This is because the chassis of each scooter is designed to fit a specific size of wheel and tire.

Can You Have Different Tires for the Front and Back?

You can have different tires for the front and back wheels of your scooter; however, this is only recommended if this configuration was already in place when you purchased the scooter.

A common option is for manufacturers to equip their scooters with an air-filled tire at the front and a solid rubber one at the rear. Rear tires bear more of the rider’s weight and as a result, are more susceptible to flats. So, by using a configuration that mixes the best of both worlds, it significantly reduces the chances of getting a flat, while still benefiting from the shock-absorption capabilities of the air-filled tire. Examples of scooters with mixed configurations like this, include the Horizon and EMOVE Touring.

Do All Electric Scooters Come With the Option of Using Tires With Different Treads?

Only some scooters come with the option of swapping tires for those with different treads. For example:

  • 8-inch tires tend to have street tread.
  • 10-inch tires commonly come with street, hybrid, or off-road tread.
  • 11-inch tires come with racing, street, or off-road tread.

As you can see there’s a correlation between tire size and tread. This is because scooters with larger wheels tend to harness more power, making them suitable for a wider range of terrains and use cases.

How Much Do Electric Scooter Tires Cost?

Electric scooter tires can cost anywhere between $20 and $100.

To give you an idea of what different tires cost, see the cost tables below:

8 Inch Tire Costs:

Tire SizeTire TypeTire TreadPrice
8 InchesSolidStreet$20 – $30
8 InchesPneumatic (Inner-Tube)Street$20 – $40

10 Inch Tire Costs:

Tire SizeTire TypeTire TreadPrice
10 InchesPneumatic (Inner-Tube)Street$30 – $50
10 InchesPneumatic (Tubeless)Street$30 – $50
10 InchesPneumatic (Inner-Tube)Hybrid$40 – $50
10 InchesPneumatic (Inner-Tube)Off-Road$50 – $60

11 Inch Tire Costs:

Tire SizeTire TypeTire TreadPrice
11 InchesPneumatic (Tubeless)Street$40 – $60
11 InchesPneumatic (Tubeless)Off-Road$40 – $60
11 InchesPneumatic (Tubeless)Racing$50 – $70
11 InchesPneumatic (Tubeless & Never-Flat)Street$50 – $100
11 InchesPneumatic (Tubeless & Never-Flat)Off-Road$50 – $100

Josh Frisby
Josh Frisby

From basic budget and feature-packed commuters to all-terrain trailblazers and ultra-performance behemoths, I've spent the last 5 years testing every type of electric scooter. All of the scooters that I review are put through a rigorous review process so that I can clearly distinguish where one is better or worse than another. See how I test electric scooters or check out my guide to the best electric scooters. Contact me anytime:

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