Bike Maintenance Basics

Bike maintenance is a wide-ranging topic, so in this article we start with the basics: a pre-ride inspection, securing bolts, and cleaning and lubricating key components.

Also, don’t overlook regular maintenance by a bike mechanic. If you ride regularly, bring your bike in for twice-yearly tune-ups to ensure that complex, hard-to-evaluate components such as spokes, bearing surfaces, derailleurs and cables are inspected and serviced regularly. These bike parts should always be serviced and adjusted by experienced mechanics.

Inspecting Your Bike

The best defense against loose components is a routine inspection before every ride. This will help you catch potential problems before they develop into safety hazards. Most pre-ride inspection adjustments can be made with a simple bike multitool.

The ABC’s: Air, Brakes, Chain

Before every ride, be sure to check the “ABC’s” to make your ride safer and help your bike last longer.

  • A is for Air: Having properly inflated tires helps prevent flats. Check the sidewall of your tire for the recommended tire pressure. While you’re checking the air, take the opportunity to ensure your quick-release levers and thru axles (if you have them) are properly tightened as well. Then, before you ride, make sure you have your patch kit and pump with you.
  • B is for Brakes: Squeeze your front and rear brake levers to make sure that the brakes engage properly and smoothly.
  • C is for Chain: Look at your chain and all the gears. Keeping your chain lubricated and everything clean will ensure your bike shifts easier and the drivetrain (made up of the front chain rings, rear cassette, rear derailleur and chain) last longer.

Securing Bike Bolts

Bicycles are held together by dozens of nuts and bolts. Maintaining a “tight ship” is important because loose (or improperly tightened) bike parts can lead to serious wear and tear, cause poor performance and create a safety hazard.

 

See more: https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/bike-maintenance.html

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