How often should you be servicing your bike?
A common question asked at bike shops is 'how often should I be servicing my bike?'. Unfortunately, there is no blanket rule, and a lot of variables influence our answer.
For arguments sake lets say you are a cyclist who rides 4-5 times a week, races a crit on the weekend and has a few big goals throughout the year. Apart from a major incident, the components on your bike will wear out a pretty steady rate. This makes it difficult to know when your bike needs a service until its blatantly obvious, (e.g a cable splitting inside the lever).
For the most part, the work that should be done to keep your bike in a great condition is stuff that can be done at home, so I have come up with a bit of a schedule of what you should be doing to keep your bike rolling as it did when you bought it.
· Pump up your tyres and check for cuts
· If you have done a sweaty ergo session, hose your bike down, and get the sweat off your bars and levers. We sweat a lot in Qld, and the amount of salt that gathers under some peoples bar tape is incredible. The last thing you want is for your alloy bars to snap under you. It happens.
· Wash your bike. Degrease the drive-train and apply some fresh lube to the chain, jockey wheels and pivot points on the derailleurs and brakes.
· Look for any wear and tear while doing this, particularly fraying cables and gritty bottom bracket and headset bearings.
· Check the state of your chain. Bring your bike into The Pedaler and let us measure the chain to check the wear.
· If you have Di2, we can check for new firmware updates and make sure you have the latest software and do an error check.
· Degrease and re-grease the Headset and Bottom Bracket. Its good to know how much life you have left in your bearings. Spin the bearings with your finger and feel for roughness.
· Replace Cables, chain, tyres, handlebar tape and cleats. For both safety and aesthetics.
The most important aspects of this process are the first two. By keeping your bike clean and tidy you will be fixing problems before they arise. Your drive-train will last longer and you won’t be getting any corrosion on your bars and levers.
Obviously this can all be quite time consuming, and that’s where we step in. We are happy to do the little jobs, and keep your bike running smoothly and looking awesome. A good quality bike deserves to be maintained, not ridden into the ground then resurrected.