Best Bike Tool Kit Under 50 (Revealed)

Buying the right set of tools for a bike isn’t an easy task, is it? I know, I was sent out recently with a crisp fifty in my back pocket and a brief to “Go and buy the best bike tool kit you can find for Uncle Tom”.

Hmm… where do you start with that one?

So, I did some research and came up with a kit that I believe (a) covers all the essentials of cycle maintenance, and (b) comes in at less than $50. I also found out the answers to a few of the most interesting questions in the world of bike repairs. I thought these might be useful to other people, so I decided to write it all up.

Let’s take a look, shall we?

Answer: Multi-tool, Lubricant, Tire Inflator, Bike bag


How to pump up a bike tire with your mouth

Ok, so technically, this is possible to do. If you find yourself in the middle of nowhere, with a tire that needs air, and no other means of filling it. Then, as I say, TECHNICALLY, this is possible.

Here’s how you do it:

  1. Give the inner tube valve a good wipe off with a piece of cloth or your bike gloves. Please, please try and get it as clean as you can
  2. Clean it again
  3. Clean it a little more
  4. Blow a little air into the tire using your tongue to press the valve and keep it open whilst you blow
  5. Check the wheel to make sure that the tire is seated properly in the rims. If not, adjust it gently by hand
  6. Carry on inflating the tire by blowing into the valve until you’ve inflated it as much as you can

Now, I say that it’s technically possible to do because frankly, this is disgusting. If you imagine all the gunk, mud, bits of roadkill, and everything else that lies on the roads and trails and gets picked up by your bike. Then imagine wrapping your lips around that and….

Excuse me, I just have to run to the bathroom…

Phew. Back now.

Look, if you’ve got no other option then this is possible to do. But I don’t exactly recommend it because of all the muck that is going to come off your bike tire valve and into your mouth. Not nice.

Besides, there are better options! Check out the CO2 tire inflator below to see what I mean.


How to fix a flat bike tire with duct tape

I’d always recommend that you carry a spare inner tube with you when you head out on the bike. To my mind replacing a damaged inner is always the best and fastest way of sorting out a puncture. A new one is only a few dollars or pounds and they’re small and easy to carry with you.

Sometimes though I’ve found myself out without an inner tube and I’ve wondered what I’d do if I had a puncture.

One of the best ways to fix a flat bike tire if you don’t have any other means is to use strong sticky tape like duct tape. I found a great video explaining it here. This guy uses electrical tape, but I think that duct tape would give a much stronger hold and make the finished repair more airtight.

Assuming that you have a slash or hole in your tire and also in your inner tube. Then the process is to:

  1. Take off the wheel
  2. Remove the tire and inner tube from the wheel
  3. Apply duct tape to the inside of the tire. Press down firmly to seal and make sure you cover a wider area than the actual damage
  4. Repeat with duct tape to the outside of the tire
  5. With the inner deflated, apply duct tape strips over the damage
  6. Inflate the inner to give it some shape. Wrap duct tape around the repair area and press it in place firmly
  7. Put the tire back onto the wheel and fit the inner tube inside
  8. Fully pump the inner tube
  9. Wrap duct tape around the tire and wheel around the repair area
  10. Fit the wheel back on and ride home carefully

Make sure you take off all the tape and replace the inner tube and tire (if damaged) before your next bike ride. Remember that this method is only a temporary fix to get you home.


Repair bike puncture without removing wheel

I once had an issue where I was out for a bike ride. I was feeling quite smug because I had a spare inner tube with me, but then disaster struck. I got a nail through the inner tube and couldn’t take the wheel off the bike to replace the tube.

One lengthy walk home and a bit of internet searching told me that the only option in this situation is to use either a patch repair kit or the duct tape method above. I think I would generally always reach for the duct tape in similar circumstances as I’ve had too many failed patch kit repairs. But I thought I’d mention it as the repair kits are small and cheap and easy to chuck in a backpack before you head out for a ride (much like a roll of duct tape though…)


Types of bike tire valve

There are two types of inner tube valves that you’ll see on bikes: Presta and Schrader. Generally, road bikes will use Presta valves, and mountain bikes will use Schrader valves.

The two valves look quite different so it’s not easy to get them mixed up. The Presta valve is thinner and has a locking nut on top to close it. Schrader valves are much wider and more robust looking than the Presta and also have a spring mechanism inside to keep the valve shut. You may recognize Schrader valves as these are common on car tires.

Because the two valves are a different size and shape, they need two different types of fitting on the pump i.e. you can’t use a Schrader pump for inflating a Presta valve tube and vice versa.

Luckily, the CO2 inflator that I recommend below has got an adaptor meaning that it can fit both Presta and Schrader valves. So, whatever type of inner tube valve you have, this will do the job nicely.


Home bike mechanic tool list

So, here we have the best under seat bike tool kit for less than $50. It’s got four main components, these are:

  • On-the-road bike tool
  • CO2 Gas tire pump
  • Bike oil
  • Tool kit storage

You can buy all four for less than $50 and you should still have room in the budget for a spare inner tube (like this one).

Let’s take a look at each of these in more detail:

WOTOW 16 in 1 Multi-Function Bike Repair Tool

A multi-tool like this one is something that I wouldn’t leave the house on my bike without. It’s so incredibly useful for all the little niggly repairs that you need to do to a bike. Most of which you don’t even know about (or conveniently, forget about) until you’re miles away from home. Having a tool like this, either in your back pocket or in the seat bag below, means that you can just hop off the bike and get them sorted there and then.
Most bikes have similar-sized screw heads, nuts, and bolts, and this has the tool sizes to match them all perfectly. It also has 3 useful tire levers, which are an essential for taking a tire off to repair or replace an inner tube.


CO2 Tire Inflator Kit

I’ve mentioned the CO2 tire inflator once or twice already and with good reason. Messing about with a tiny little bike pump is a total pain when you’re on the road (or anywhere else for that matter). Yes, they’re small, but they take an absolute age to pump a tire up to a pressure that you can actually ride on. I find that one of these CO2 canisters can easily pump up one mtb/road bike tire and should do two mtb and one-and-a-half road bike tires total. They’re small, they’re lightweight, and they get the job done. This is a fantastic set that comes with 3 cartridges and works with both types of inner tube valve (Presta and Schrader).


3-IN-ONE Multi-Purpose Oil

You need three things to keep your bike wheels turning: regular maintenance, a good strong pair of legs, and bike oil.

I’ve had at least one can of 3-in-one in my garage for as long as I can remember and use it on my bike at every opportunity. It’s particularly important to give it a few drops on all the moving parts (not the brakes!) before you go out for a ride, after you’ve been out for a ride, and after you’ve given it a clean.


BV Bike Seat Bag

When I’m out for a cycle my pockets tend to be stuffed full of snacks, maps, phone, and all sorts of other paraphernalia. I need to make sure that I don’t forget to take the repair kit out with me when I go, but don’t necessarily have room for it in my pockets.

It also doesn’t have to be so readily accessible as those snacks – I might eat a banana on-the-go, but I’m unlikely to attempt to repair a puncture!

For that reason, I like to keep the kit always on the bike but tucked away safe, and the BV seat bag is ideal for that. Room for the essentials (multi-tool, CO2 and inner tube) and strapped safely to the underside of the saddle.


Essential bike tools to carry

Well, Uncle Tom was happy with his $50 bike tool kit and I hope you will be too. Buying the right set of tools for cycling isn’t an easy task but I hope my article has made it slightly easier for you? And I hope I’ve even answered some of those questions about cycling that have been rattling around in your head?

Having a few key bike tools can allow you to do those niggly little repairs yourself. Rather than paying much more to a bike shop to get them to do the repairs for you.


A multi-tool like this one is something that I wouldn’t leave the house on my bike without.

It’s so incredibly useful for all the little niggly repairs that you need to do to a bike. Most of which you don’t even know about (or conveniently, forget about) until you’re miles away from home. Having a tool like this, either in your back pocket or in the seat bag below, means that you can just hop off the bike and get them sorted there and then.

Most bikes have similar-sized screw heads, nuts, and bolts, and this has the tool sizes to match them all perfectly. It also has 3 useful tire levers, which are an essential for taking a tire off to repair or replace an inner tube.