Bike Maintenance

Words by Aaron Scott

on 29/08/2013 17:59:00

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Bike Maintenance
Our Technical Manager leads a class at Whitwell

New to cycling?

We show you how to get the best out of your bike and keep those wheels turning.

With every new bike purchase comes a honeymoon period where you want to keep your pride and joy in pristine condition. Unfortunately the new bike glow fades quite quickly and with that comes a tendency to spend your cycling time on the bike and very little time making sure it's in a roadworthy condition for its next outing.

These are a few things that every cyclist should get into the habit of doing after using your bike especially if you've been on a particularly long or wet ride.

1. Perform a quick M-Check

The M-Check - as the name suggests - follows a rough M shape across the bike, starting at the bottom of your front forks, and ending at the bottom of your rear forks. It makes sure that wheels and contact points are all tight and the bike has two functioning brakes. Over time, bolts and fixings on a bike can be shaken loose so it is important to keep on top of this.

Download a handy M-Check PDF >

2. Muddy bikes are not happy bikes

While the first thought on your mind after a wet ride is getting inside and a hot shower, cleaning your bike before it has time to dry off is a much easier job and if you use a good water disperspent such as GT85, it will definitely help prolong the life of your drivetrain. Nobody wants a rusty bike, now do they?

3. Tyre pressure check

If you spend all your time on the road (either on a road bike for fun or a hybrid for commuting), having the correct tyre pressure can make the job a whole lot easier. Tubes are porous, some more so than others, so even without getting a puncture your tyres will still go down over time. 50 - 60 psi for a hybrid bike is about right, but be sure to check the manufacturers recommendation (usually on the sidewall).

One further word of warning: the lower your tyre pressure, the greater your chance of getting a puncture - and of damaging your rims.

4. Lubrication for a smoother ride

A suitable lube helps all the moving parts move a little easier which in turn makes the job of turning the pedals that little bit easier too! Make sure you apply fresh lube onto a clean chain and wipe of any excess. If you are riding your bike in wet conditions then it may be worth thinking about a specific wet weather lube such as Finish Line.