When should I get my bike serviced?

11 February, 2020

One of the biggest questions we get in our stores is, when should I get my bike serviced?

We offer a free first service on all of our bikes. We’d recommend that you book that in after riding for few months. Those initial adjustments and checks are extra important. When your bike is first assembled the new parts take some time and riding to get to know each other. Thoroughly checking and adjusting all the parts of your bike is extra important at this early stage.

After this initial service, we recommend a major service each 12 months with a minor check up at each change of season. It’s a reasonable guideline, but it really does depend on how much you ride, and what kinds of conditions you're riding in. Heavy use, rain, mud and dust all mean more frequent servicing. It's worth keeping an eye out for the telltale signs that your bike might need a service.

Telltale signs that your bike is due for a service

>>  A squeaking chain can be a sign of insufficient lubrication
>>  Grinding, skipping or clicking noises from the gears indicate that they need adjustment
>>  Your bike chain should never fall off the sprocket; if it does, your derailleurs may need        adjustment
>>  Brake should engage smoothly and quietly, with only a short pull on the lever
>>  Any rattles, wobbles or creaks should be investigated early; usually it's an easy fix, but best to catch it early!

If you're seeing any of these signs, it may be time for a service or a tune-up. As with any mechanical device, prevention is better than cure, so here’s things to look for every time you ride, every week and every month. A couple of small maintenance tasks, done early, can extend the period between major services, help your components to last longer and give you better performance!

Every ride:

Do an ABC-Quick check!

This stands for Air, Brakes, Chain and Quick Releases. It’s just a quick way to remember to check the Air in your tyres, makes sure that your Brakes are working right, that your Chain is clean and lightly oiled and that your Quick Release skewers (or bolt-on axles) are done up right and tight. Having a floor pump at home with a gauge means that you can get the tyre pressure right, quickly. The mini-pumps are best for use out on the road. Some good lube like Rock’n’Roll Gold and a chain cleaner makes the chain part easy.

Every week:

>> Do a thorough check of your air pressure using a pump
>> Check your tyres for wear, cuts and grazes, and replace if necessary
>> Check brake and gear cables for rust or fraying, and replace if necessary
>> Check your pedals and cranks to make sure that they’re tight
>> Listen to your chain turning through the gears - are the gear shifts crisp and accurate, and is the chain quiet?

Every month:

>> Check that your wheels are true and straight
>> Lubricate brake levers, derailleurs and cables
>> Check and lubricate your pedal cleats (if applicable)
>> Check all the other bolts, such as those in crank, seatpost, handlebars, stems, brakes and gears
>> Inspect the bike frame and components for any dings, dents, cracks or scratches - giving the bike a thorough clean is sometimes the best way to do a detailed check, and it gives you the chance to get your bike looking bright and new!

If you notices any issues as part of the daily, weekly or monthly check over, it might be an indication that your bike is due for a check-up. If you're at all unsure, give us a buzz. We can help.

Need help?

As always, the Reid Cycles stores  are happy to provide advice over the phone or in person about what servicing and maintenance you might need on your bike. We also recommend buying our extended service pack with our new bikes, as you effectively get three services for the price of one! We also offer a full range of mechanical services. Click here for more info. If you give your bike a little love, it will love you back with years of happy and reliable riding!