Three Simple Bike Repairs
Summer is here and there is no better time to take a carefree bike ride around the greenbelt or neighborhood. However, as with any faithful machine, your bike can become vulnerable to wear and tear. So, it is always best to be prepared before taking to the road by knowing a little bit about bicycle repair. Here are three common issues and how to fix them fast.
Getting a Loose Seat to Budge
It can be pretty irritating to deal with a seat that is stuck in a position that is either too low or too high. This usually happens, though, when you purchase a secondhand bicycle that has been ridden by the previous owner for several years. Fortunately, this is a simple problem to fix.
First, loosen your binder completely and remove the bolt and collar. Then, slather the entire area with grease and let your bike sit overnight. This should loosen the appropriate parts and the problem should take care of itself. If this method is not sufficient, simply grip your bike’s saddle, and attempt to twist the post free, or use a pair of pliers and a clamp to pull the pieces apart by twisting firmly.
Fix a Flat Tire
Before you even begin, you should take a moment to check your tire pressure before searching for punctures. If your tires have not been inflated correctly, flats may occur, even without a hole. Just look on the sidewall of each tire for an indicator of the intended air pressure range, and use a bike pump with a built-in pressure gauge to inflate them to the specified levels if they are low.
If your tires continue to sag, then you will know right away that you are dealing with a dreaded puncture. For this reason, you should always travel with a spare inner tube in case of emergency.
Changing bike tires these days is easier than ever since most models contain a quick wheel release that doesn’t even require any tools. You will simply open the lever and the easily remove the wheel. Then, open the valve and let the remaining air escape. To avoid the valve sticking out on the tire’s inside; push the valve up into the tire.
Take two to three tire levers and wedge them under the tire’s edge. This will pop the tire from the rim. Now remove the inner tube, cautiously lifting it over the valve. Then, inflate the replacement inner tube halfway and slip it carefully into the outer tire. Once that’s done, you can tuck the edges back into the rim and re-inflate your tire to the specified pressure, and shut the valve.
Replacing your Slipped Chain
You won’t even need any special tools to replace your slipped chain, so this is an easy fix. This common issue usually occurs on the front chainring, but no matter where the slip is, you need to put the chain back into the bottom groove on the rear cog before attaching it to the top teeth of the front chainring. This makes the process go a lot smoother.
As soon as you reestablish the connection between the front chainring and the rear cogs, you can push your pedals forward, pulling the chain around each for a full rotation.
With a few simple tools, some elbow grease, and a bit of common sense, pretty much any amateur cyclist can take care of these common bicycle repairs with little assistance or downtime. After all, why would you want to waste your time in the garage when you could be pedaling the day away in the great outdoors?