Anybody out there who loves to cycle knows the importance of regular bicycle maintenance. Maintaining your bike properly allows you to keep it in good shape so that it serves you for longer. Doing your own maintenance does not necessarily mean that you need to know how to take apart the entire bicycle and reassemble it.
Basic bike maintenance involves cleaning and lubricating the key components as well as inspecting and securing the bolts on a regular basis. If you ride your bike regularly, you should take it to the mechanic at least once every month depending on your riding. The mechanic will check and inspect the hard to evaluate components such as the 48v e-bike battery, bearing surfaces, spokes, and cables.
Steps to take for easy maintenance
In this article, we’ll focus on the steps that you should take to ensure that your electric bike is well maintained. Here are some tips to get you started:
- Inspect your bike
To protect yourself and keep it safe from loose components, you ought to do a routine inspection. Inspecting regularly helps you catch any potential problem before it develops into something serious.
The most important things that you should check before riding are the “ABCs”. This abbreviation stands for air, brakes, and the chain. Inspect it regularly not only helps your it last longer but also keeps you safer.
Check that you have properly inflated tires, squeeze the brakes to makes sure that they engage smoothly, and also check your chain as well as all the gears.
- Keep your bicycle clean and lubricated
Most parts of the bike can be cleaned by wiping them using either a dry or damp cloth. There are, however, other parts that require occasional scrubbing and brushing. Cleaning might sound simple but its half the battle.
The basic supplies that you need when cleaning your bike include:
- Water. Avoid using water from high-pressure hose pipes as this might damage sensitive systems.
- Brush. These help you to get into the hard-to-reach places.
- Chain scrubber. This will help you remove all the grime from your chain.
- A degreasing solvent. A bike specific degreaser cleans up gummy parts of the bike such as the chain.
- Detergent. You can either use dishwasher soap or bike wash cleaner.
- Chain lubricant. Lubricants help extend the life of your chain.
- Sponge/ piece of cloth. These come in handy for general cleaning and drying.
- Bike stand. This will allow you to position the bike in a stationary position while you work on it.
Keeping your bike parts clean and well lubricated enhances performance especially if you spend a lot of time riding in wet, muddy conditions or if you ride it frequently and for long distances.
Lubricating the bike protects the moving parts from excessive wear and tear that is caused by friction. Lubricants also keep rust and corrosion at bay. Always allow the lubricants enough time to soak and then wipe away excess lube before riding the bike. Excess lube would attract dirt to the chain.
- Fix flat tires as soon as possible
At some point in your riding experience, you are sure to experience a flat tire. Always ensure that you bring a replacement with you wherever you go. To fix a flat tire, you only need a brand new tire tube, a pump, and either one or two tire levers.
Instead of getting an entirely new tire tube, you could use a tire patch to fix the old tube instead of throwing it away.
To fix a flat tire, start by removing the wheel from the bike and then deflating it. Take out the tire off the tube and carefully inspect it to see what caused the puncture.
- Secure the bolts
Bicycle parts are held together by dozens of nuts and bolts.
Any loose parts can lead to serious accidents and create a safety hazard for the rider. Improperly tightened parts could also lower the performance and cause wear and tear of the bike parts.
You should also make sure that you do not over-tighten the parts as this could lead to damage or failure of the parts.
Regularly check your chain and replace it if need be
The chain starts to stretch when it gets old. After, the loose chain starts slipping under pressure and causes wear and tear to the drivetrain. To avoid damaging parts of the drivetrain, it’s recommended that you regularly replace your chain.
To change a bicycle chain, you need a new chain and a chain breaker. The chain breaker takes the pin out of one of the chain links.