Old 01-20-21, 01:53 PM
  #180  
cyccommute 
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Originally Posted by cbrstar View Post
Maybe I am wrong? Reading up I was kind of surprised to read cold air preserves tires because it slows dry rot. And I was also surprised to read that rubber actually expands in cold temperatures. I'm just going off my own observations where I have stored tires and bikes in my shed only to find hairline cracks in the sidewalls of the tire next spring. Where as the ones I've kept in my house are still in great shape. The other thing I have encountered is my GF put some tires in the furnace room, and a year or two later when I wanted to use them for a classic build they were ROCK hard!! I attributed it to heat from the furnace but there must be a different explanation.
Cold temperatures almost always slow chemical reactions. Any degradation is a chemical reaction that may be the result of UV or ozone. Heat also causes the rubber to further crosslink, which causes the rubber to stiffen. Some crosslinking is good but too much is bad.

Iím not sure what you mean by the rubber expands in cold weather. I think you are referring to the rubber expanding when inflated cold but it will be a little stiffer. Itís not harmed by putting air in it, however.

Cracks in rubber can be caused by a number of different conditions. They shouldnít crack when stored in the cold outside in single winter. If they happen to be exposed to light or if there is something electrical running in the building, that can cause rubber embrittlement. The tires that hardened in a furnace room is due to the ozone that is created by the electrical motor running. Something as simple as putting the tires and tubes in a plastic bag can go a long ways toward keeping the ozone away from the rubber and they will last longer.
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