How Often Should You Service Your Bike?
Just like a car, your bike needs regular servicing to keep it running smoothly. But how often should you service your bike? The answer depends on how often you ride, the type of bike you have, and the conditions you ride in. Here's a breakdown of what you need to know.
First Free Service
When you buy a bike from Cycles UK we do a free service after about 4 to 6 weeks. This is because new bikes often need a little bit of adjustment as they bed in. Cables stretch and bolts work loose. The first service is designed to catch these kind of standard issues before they develop into a problem.
Quick Daily or Weekly Checks
It’s good to get into the habit of doing a quick check before and after rides, or once a week if regularly commuting. It’s often easiest to do this while giving your bike a wash. Things to check are:
- Are the tyres pumped up to the correct pressure?
- Are your brakes working and do you have plenty of brake pad left?
- Is your chain dry, does it need lubrication?
- Is anything obviously rattling, rubbing or feeling off?
- While you are washing your bike keep an eye out for cracks, dents or loose parts
As with a car if your bike starts making weird noises get it to the shop and have someone look at it.
How Often to Service Your Bike
Assuming that you are doing the basic daily and weekly checks above the general rule of thumb is that you should service your bike every 3 months or 6 months. However, if you ride frequently or in harsh conditions, you may need to service your bike more often. For example, if you live in an area with a lot of dust or sand, you may find parts wear out more quickly.
Similarly, if you ride in the rain often, you'll need to pay special attention to your brakes and gears to make sure they're not rusting. If you don't ride very often, you can probably get away with servicing your bike once every 6 months. But no matter how often you ride, it's important to give your bike a thorough inspection at least once a year.
Types of Bike Services
There are three main types of bike services—Bronze, Silver and Gold—and each one covers different aspects of your bike.
- The Bronze service is a basic safety check of the bike, making sure everything is tight and there is no obvious play in common problem areas like the bottom bracket or headset. It also includes a quick tune of your brakes and gears.
- A silver service includes the same checks as a bronze service but also includes cleaning and degreasing the gears and checking the wheels to see if they need truing.
- The Gold service is a complete strip down and re-build of the bike with everything being greased and checked.
If you are servicing your bike regularly, every 3 to 6 months, then you can normally get by on having a bonze or silver service done each time as there will be relatively little work to do.
Where to get your bike serviced?
Cycles UK have 7 bike shops covering Essex, Kent, London and Hertfordshire. All our shops have qualified and experienced mechanics on hand who can service your bike. We are authorised dealers for big brands including Trek, Specialized, Orbea and Cannondale but can service bikes from most manufacturers.
If you are not close to a Cycles UK store then look out for good independent local bike shops, especially ones who have Cytech qualified mechanics.
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