Tips for maintaining your bicycle

Get kitted up -
Always carry a multi-tool kit. These compact, robust, and lightweight bicycle repair kits serve as a mini toolbox and can be stored in your backpack or saddlebag.

Don't get let down -
Don’t let yourself down. Pack a bike tire repair kit. Perfect the art of changing a flat, because you’re not a proper cyclist unless you can patch your own tubes.

Where's the puncture? -
Remember that you can’t begin to repair a punctured tire without first identifying and removing the offending thorn, nail, tack, or glass shard.

Gleam machine -
Keep your machine clean! You can’t properly adjust and maintain a bicycle that is dirty and not lubricated.

Crank it up -
Check the tightness of your crank bolts every month or so. A creaky crankset, or chainset, likely indicates that it’s loose on the spindle.

Put the brakes on -
Periodically check for brake pad wear and tear, especially if you use your bike on a daily basis.

Don't risk the discs -
If your bike is fitted with disc brakes, avoid touching them with your fingers. The moisture from your skin can decrease their braking power.

Dishing out the dirt -
Speaking of dirt and grit, check places where crud is likely to accumulate such as in brake pads, between tubes and tires, in cleats, cogs and pedals, and along the chain.

Get in gear -
Here's a great tip: the easiest method of releasing the rear wheel is to shift into the highest gear so the chain is on the outer (smallest) cog.

Other way up -
While sometimes not practical, try and avoid turning your bike upside down to work on it. By inverting the frame you run the risk of chaffing cables, accessories, and the saddle.

Proper storage -
Storing your bike for an extended period? Shift to the smallest cog and ring combination to prevent pressure and wear on your derailleur springs.

Quick release -
It’s always worth giving the quick releases on both wheels a gentle tug occasionally to make sure they are fastened down firmly and comfortably.

Regular checkup -
How often should you check your bike? Well, that depends a lot on how often you use it. A general rule of thumb however is around every 320 km (200 mi) of cycling.

Be seen -
Ensure that your front and rear lights are always clean and remember to regularly charge each unit.

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