Posted by Ryan on Dec 17, 2009 | General
Here are some things anyone can do to keep your bike running smoothly:
- Check tire pressure weekly, make sure tires are inflated to manufacturers recommended specs printed on the sidewalls. Also, check tires for cuts, severe cracking, holes, and glass.
- Clean/lube chain regularly, more often during rainy weather. Always clean first with a rag and soapy water or degreaser, then apply one drop of lube on each roller, cycle through the gears and then wipe off excess. Do not over lube! Too much lube will wear out the chain prematurely. If chain is shiny, rusty or squeaking, it's a good time to re-lube. Also, have a shop measure your 'chain-wear' every four to six months, depending on how much you ride and your riding style (aggressive, leisurely, commuting, etc.). If you replace your chain when needed, you can prolong the life of your drivetrain and save yourself a lot of money.
- Check your quick release levers every time you ride, especially if you transport your bike by car. Make sure your wheels are straight in the frame before tightening down. If you have bolt-on wheels, put a wrench on them and make sure the nuts are tight.
- Put your weight on the bars and make sure they don't slip. Put the front wheel between your legs and rock the bars back and forth to check for stem tightness. Make sure seatpost is tight by rocking the saddle back and forth. Make sure saddle is bolted to the seatpost securely.
- Check brake pads are bolted down securely and pads aren't worn past the wear line. Make sure pads do not touch the tire when you squeeze the brake levers. Check brake cable anchor bolts for tightness.
- Always carry a pump or a CO2 kit, spare tubes and/or patch kit, tire levers (more than one), and a multi-tool when you ride.