How To Maintain your Mountain Bike
A mountain bike takes some serious punishment when you’re tearing up the woods. Mud, sand, grime, and water. Mashing the pedals up a climb, thundering down hills, smashing through deep holes and gutters… it all causes wear and tear on your beloved bike. This makes it especially important to perform regular maintenance. This blog focuses on doing exactly that! So what can you do to ensure your mountain bike keeps running like a dream?
Wash your bike
Don’t use a high pressure washer, but lather the bike instead. The pressure of a high-pressure jet can cause grease and lubricant to be pushed out of bearings and moving parts. This allows water and dirt to corrode and damage the bearings.
After a wash, it’s best to clean the chain and cogs with a clean rag while you’re at it.
Washing the bike is a perfect time to thoroughly inspect the pain on your bike, and look for any indications that there might be structural damage to the frame or components.
Maintain your bike
Regularly clean the chain with a dry cloth, keeping it shiny and silver. Lubricate the chain with oil at least every two rides. WD40, teflon, or silicone spray alone aren’t resilient enough to lubricate your chain!
You only have to lubricate the chain, and not the cassette as well. It’s best not to use a spray-based lubricant, as this will also settle onto your brakes which is the one place you definitely don’t want to apply lubricant!
Check your bike
Check the brake pads of your disc- or V-brakes regularly. If you hear a grinding noise, then replace the pads before damage can be done to other components. If you’re not sure how to do so, check our blog or visit your local bike store.
YouTube clips can also be a great help! Cleaning agents for brakes can only be used on separate rotors or pads, and should never be used on or in the caliper!
The right pressure
Regularly check the tyre pressure. The maximum pressure is denoted on the side of the tyre.
Normally, a mountain bike tyre is inflated to between 2 and 2.5 Bar.
Check your components
Regularly check the bolts on your bike. The many bumps and vibrations can easily cause something to come loose. Simply retightening them will suffice.
We recommend using a torque wrench especially with carbon frames, but it’s preferable with aluminium ones as well.
If you need to re(assemble) your pedals, seat post, or stem then do so with a little assembly paste, which ensures you’ll be able to remove the components again later should you have to. It also helps to protect your frame from water and dirt.
Before you jump on your bike and set out for the trails, just quickly run through the checklist below:
- Tyre pressure (approximately 2 Bar);
- Brake check (is there enough pressure in the system and are your pads in good condition?);
- Check for any play in the front or rear wheel;
- Bounce the bike a few times to check for any loose components
- Apply some force to the saddle and bars, testing whether they can be twisted or turned.
- Helmet on?
- Pump, spare tube, and multitool packed?