Man Inspecting Mountain Bike

BASIC GUIDE ON MOUNTAIN BIKE MAINTENANCE

Getting a mountain bike is an investment, so why not make the money and time you spent on it worth it by giving it proper and regular mountain bike maintenance? Doing this saves you from repair and replacement costs.

It’s not complicated to maintain a bike. To get you started, here’s a basic guide on mountain bike maintenance.

CLEAN YOUR BIKE

Extend the life of your bike with proper and regular cleaning. This won’t take too much of your time and effort but will let you reap benefits in the long term.

To clean your mountain bike, use a basic biodegradable soap, a sponge, an old toothbrush and a towel. Use these to remove dirt, grease, grime and stains. Scrub and brush everything, from the frame, chain, brakes, pedals to derailleurs and seat.

Rinse everything with a gentle spray of water. It’s also good to remove the seat post so you can thoroughly clean it. Wipe your bike dry after.

CHECK YOUR BRAKES

Checking the brakes is important because this ensures your safety more than letting enjoy flawless maneuvers especially in corners. Prevent injuries by checking them regularly.

To thoroughly inspect the brakes, check every part of it — from brake pads to the small rectangular part that rubs against the wheel rim. Check for signs if they’re already worn down and need to be replaced.

CHECK YOUR WHEELS

Checking the wheels/rims are important because these are what hold your tires in place. Ensuring your wheels are in good condition provides you with stability and smoothness while you’re on the road.

To check the wheels, raise your bike and spin the wheels. Check if both wheels are moving smoothly, without any wobble or interruption. In case of wobbly wheels, adjust them with a spoke wrench. However, if there’s excessive damage, make the effort to replace your wheels.

INSPECT YOUR TIRES

Another important step to mountain bike maintenance is to regularly check the bike tires. Tires need to be in excellent condition to let you ride on a variety of unlikely surfaces efficiently and safely.

To inspect the tires, check the tire pressure first. Tire pressure varies, depending on the terrain you’re riding. But to keep it simple, the general guide is to maintain a 30-45 psi.

Next is to check if your tires are damaged by splits, cracks or tears. It’s also recommended to check the tread for excessive wear, in which case your best option is to have it replaced.

Changing tires and tubes is a simple fix but this step in mountain bike maintenance can save you from the dangers of a bursting tire, which can lead to loss of control while you’re riding.

ADD LUBRICANT

Adding lubricants to the chain and other parts of the drivetrain not only maintains the efficiency of your bike but also helps it last longer. Lube also prevents dirt and grime accumulation, letting all the moving parts of the bike perform well.

To lubricate your mountain bike, apply an even layer of lubricant to the chain while slowly rotating the pedals. Rotate it in a counter-clockwise direction. Don’t forget to lubricate the moving parts on the derailleur, the pivot point on the brake levers and any cable wire that’s exposed. Wipe off the excess oil with a clean and dry rag.

Learning proper steps to mountain bike maintenance is one of the best ways to make you enjoy your investment longer. By simply cleaning it and regularly checking the parts, you’re assuring yourself and your bike more years of riding and racing on different kinds of trails and terrain.

 


 

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Peter Williams
peterwilliams@dinga.com.au

Peter loves bikes of all kinds. He has a passion for mountain biking right through to cycling long distance. He is sharing his experience here OnDECK.