Has your bike been sitting in the shed all winter? Time to shake off the cobwebs and get your bike road ready this spring. Enda from The Bike Room in The Sports Room gives his top tips for maintaining your road and mountain bikes.
Find a clean, open space that you don’t mind spilling grease on, make yourself a coffee and get going!
For those of you who have not been out during the cold and dark winter months, it’s now time to resurface for the spring. But before you head out for your first ride of the season, it’s worth spending some time getting your bike ready for the road or mountain. Here are some basic bike maintenance tips to spring-clean your bike that will help ensure a safe, efficient ride now and all season.
If you don’t want to get your hands dirty or it’s not your thing, drop into to us here at the Bike Room for a full service and tune-up.
1. Clean the bike
A clean bike extends the life of all its components. Remove general dirt and excess grease and oil. Use a basic cleaner product such as MUC-OFF and brush to clean everything: the frame, chain, chain rings, cassette, derailleurs, pedals, brakes, and seat.
2. Check the brake system
First, check the brake pads for even wear and the brake lever tension. If you notice an uneven wear pattern or slack in the cable, you may need to have your brakes adjusted.
3. Check the wheels
Clean the wheels. Check the rims for nicks, dents or other damage. Next, elevate one end of the bike and spin the wheel. The wheel should move smoothly, without wobbling or buckles. Repeat for the other wheel. Damaged rims cause uneven wear to tires and brake pads.
4. Check the drivetrain
Shift through all the gears. Shifting should be smooth and easy to perform. Inefficient shifting can be addressed by a tune up or can be the result of wear and tear of drive chain components. Experiencing issues with smooth gear change.
5. Check the tyres
Check your tyre threads and walls for splits, cracks or tears and the correct pressure.
6. Check the gear shifter and brake cables
Inspect the cables and housing for cracks, rust, dirt and the correct tension. Have the correct tension and good quality cables make shifting and braking smooth, which increases bike performance. If you notice poor tension damaged or worn out cables, get them replaced.
Apply bike lubricant evenly to the chain while slowly rotating the pedals in a counterclockwise direction. Also, remember to lube moving parts on the derailleur, the pivot point on the brake levers and any exposed cable wire. Remember to wipe off any excess oil with a clean, dry rag, especially on the chain. Note if your bike has disc brakes be careful to avoid getting lube on the rotor and pads ! A properly lubricated bike makes shifting and braking smooth, thereby increasing performance.
The Sports Room, Wicklow Town has a bike and bike repair shop in store – The Bike Room. Enda is a certified Cytech mechanic and can service any bike – road, mountain, hybrid and kids bikes. You can purchase bike accessories at The Sports Room – brands such as Lezyne, Pirelli, Topeak are stocked. You can also purchase bike wear from brands such as Santini, Spiuk and Fox.