Just like any other machine, our bicycles need constant maintenance to keep them in great working condition. It’s not that hard to give bikes some much-needed care and attention, actually: all you need are the right tools, a working knowledge of what you should and shouldn’t do and some bike specialists on speed dial in case things get really hairy.
Leading bike shops offer great maintenance services. But, your responsibilities involving caring for your bike shouldn’t be limited to just contacting professional service providers when something goes wrong.
Don’t forget how to tighten and loosen things!
Something as simple as mistakenly turning to the left to tighten a screw and to the right to loosen it can result in major damage for your bike. Remember that your bike is really just a system of metal and independently functioning simple machines taken together, and that damaging one part could render your bike effectively useless.
Remember to keep bike tires pumped.
It’s natural for bike tires to lose air, mainly because they don’t hold much to begin with. Biking on soft tires is basically asking for bike damage or injuries. Check the air pressure in your tires on a regular basis.
Tire pressure varies depending on the type of tires your bike has.
Often, road tires range from 95 (for lighter passengers) to 125 pounds per square inch (psi), while mountain tires range from 35 to 45 pounds.
Store your bike properly.
Don’t just lazily leave your bike lying outside your house after a day’s worth of biking. It would be subjected to the harsh elements, and can quickly deteriorate in under a year. Why not invest in a bike hook that you can attach anywhere (unobtrusive) inside your house?
Run regular checks on it.
Be prepared for breakage by checking your bike regularly. Regular checks (whether weekly or monthly) can prevent failure, cut costs and, more importantly, save your life.
Take good care of your bicycle, and you’ll have many years of healthy living and fun exercise ahead of you.