Even a casual bicycle rider can help keep his bicycle in good working condition. Here are five easy maintenance tips that every rider can and should do to keep his bicycle working well and to prevent problems.
- Check the air pressure in the tires. According to Tad Hylkema, a veteran bicycle industry expert and consultant at All Experts, checking the tire pressure is the easiest and most helpful maintenance step a rider can do. Low tire pressure makes it harder to pedal. The correct tire pressure can help also prevent punctures when the tire is pinched between a road object and the rim.
- Lubricate the chain. Wipe off any extra grease and road grime before lubricating the chain. Make sure the dirt gets wiped off the chain, not through the chain and onto the other side. Tad advises to get a lesson in lubrication technique that will prevent jumping gears and poor shifting. Check your local bike store for the proper lube to use.
- Inspect the tires. After a ride, inspect the tires for any foreign objects that could lead to punctures. If there are any, remove them. If they cause an air leak, repair them before the next ride.
- Check the brakes. Make sure the brakes are tight and are able to stop the bike. If they are not tight, learn how to adjust them.
- Inspect the wheels. Check the wheels for loose spokes.
All of these can be done easily either immediately after a ride or just before a ride. None of them take much time and they will prevent problems that easily could be avoided.