Cycling as a simple way of getting from one place to another is becoming more and more popular, with government drives, more cycle lanes, the lower cost, health benefits and it being friendly to the environment all being points in its favour for the commuter. If you’ve got an old bike languishing in a corner, then dust it off and follow these easy tricks to look after it.
Keep it Clean
You wouldn’t let your car get covered with grime week after week without cleaning it off, so why should you treat your bike any differently? You can clean it using a bucket of soapy water and a sponge; do try and choose a sensitive or eco-friendly soap though as some can contain harsh chemicals that may not be so good for your bike. It is particularly important to clean your bike regularly in winter time of course, when grit and salt can get on the frame and corrode it. Remember to dry it off thoroughly with a rag too.
Sort out that Rust
If they are any parts of the bike frame that have been corroded and are now rusted, don’t worry, you can solve this problem. Simple get some anti-rust primer which even comes in spray can form, for those awkward to reach nooks and crannies meaning you can then paint over the rust if you can match the colour. There are even some spray can paints that you can use directly on rust too. By treating the rust in this way, it can help prevent any further corrosion.
Keep Your Tyres Pumped
Tyres naturally lose a little air over time, so the best thing to do is to test them and pump them up each month. Especially if you are heavier, having firmer wheels can make cycling much easier. If you do this, it will be easier to spot if you get a puncture too, or a slow puncture in the inner tube.
Greasing the Chain
Keeping the chain well lubricated is important, but don’t overdo it; give the chain a wipe down every week to remove any excess grease. And when you are lubricating it again, leave the oil to ink in for a few minutes before wiping off the excess with a rag.
Greasing the Seat Post
Since you’ve got the oil out any way, don’t forget to grease the seat post too; even if you always keep the seat at the same height, it’s a good idea to grease it every once in a while to keep it in good working order. This not only helps to prevent rust, but makes it easier if you do need to ever move the seat.