Maintenance Tips to Keep Your Mountain Bike Mechanically Sound
Taking care of your full suspension or hardtail mountain bike can be very simple and it will also help increase its mechanical life. Below is a maintenance guide that should be considered after every ride in order to help you keep your mountain bike mechanically sound. Once you perform this maintenance plan and become familiar with the process it should take you no more then 20 minutes to complete. Let’s get started:
- Remove all of the accessories (lights, bells, etc) on the top of the handlebars.
- Turn the bike upside down so you can remove the wheels and inspect the drive train.
- Carefully remove the front and rear wheels to give you more room to work on the bike.
- Clean the drive train (derailleurs, chain, and crank) with a brush and soapy water. Also use a wet soapy rag on the chain and rear derailleur. Try to do your best to clean all moving parts.
- After you clean your bike parts make sure you dry them thoroughly with a towel so they do not rust.
- Wash the underside, frame and front fork, of the bike and make sure all moving parts are free of debris.
- Wash your front and rear wheels by cleaning the rim, spokes and cassette. Then put the wheels back on the bike.
- After you put each wheel back on the bike spin them to make sure the wheels are true and also that they do not rub on the brake components. If the wheels are not true and or rubbing on the brake components make the necessary adjustments.
- After your chain is back in place turn the pedals to check the drive train. Make sure the bike pedals smooth. If you hear any strange noises coming from your wheel bearings investigate further.
- Turn your bike over so it is right side up and wash the top. Do not forget to dry the bike thoroughly.
- Test your front and rear brakes and make any necessary adjustments.
- If applicable inspect your front and rear shocks. Make sure they are in good working order.
- Thoroughly lubricate you drive train (chain, cassettes, crank and derailleur) with the recommended oil. Apply oil while moving the pedals in both directions to make sure the components are appropriately lubed.
- Finally reattach any of the accessories that you removed in step one.
The steps listed above will help you keep your bike in good working order and also help you prepare for your next ride. If any mechanical malfunction is noticed during the process make sure it is addressed. Your local bike shop, which sells mountain bikes for sale and bike parts, will be able to help replace a component if additional help is needed.
See you on the trail