After a long winter in storage, your bike may need some care before the start of the new season. Our spring bike checklist is easy to follow, and helps keep your bike in good shape throughout the spring and summer.
Start off by wiping down your bike, getting rid of any salt, mud, or dust it accumulated over the winter. If using a hose to spray down your bike, be sure to use a low pressure setting. Check your bike seat over, and make sure it’s tightened and adjusted properly before getting back into the saddle.
Next, check the state of your tires, and tire pressure. Inspect your tires for any cracks, thorns, or bald patches. Once you've confirmed the tires are in good shape, check your tire pressure. After sitting for the winter, your tires will likely need to be inflated. Your bike tire will give you the recommended PSI range for riding.
Check the condition of your chain next, keeping an eye out for rust, cracking, or excessive wear. Use a degreaser and a clean rag to remove any grime or mud from your chain. Depending on your riding style, pick a wet or dry lube. If you ride primarily in dry locations, roads or trails, a dry lube is most likely the best option. Dry lube doesn’t let dirt or debris stick to it, however it will wash off in rain or wet conditions. Wet lube is usually a better option for cyclists biking in weather or through puddles. Keep in mind, however, that dirt, dust, and debris will stick to your chain. To lube the chain, place a drop of the lube on each link, while backpedaling. Use a minimal amount, and wipe off any excess used.
Overtime, brake pads will get worn down with use and by accumulating debris on your bike’s rims. If your brake pad is thinning, wiggles, or is too far from the rim, it’s time to replace. Other telltale signs of wear include losing the ability to brake, or grinding noises as you apply the brakes.
For more thorough maintenance and peace of mind, bring your bike to a repair shop for general servicing or a tune-up. Ensuring your bike is in good condition, and is safe to ride, is the best way to start off the season.