Spring is approaching! You can see it, you can hear it, you can smell it. More and more often you will see that the air temperature after waking up is positive, and the sun will make days warmer and warmer. Therefore, if you are wondering what servicing a bike after a winter break looks like, this article is for you!
It may seem different but preparing a bike for riding after a winter break is not so difficult, and with a bit of will and thanks to a few tools, you can carry out it at home. And if you come to the conclusion that this is too difficult, you can walk your bike to one of KROSS's shops. But before we get to that point, let's go through all the steps that will allow you to enjoy a spring bike ride!
What tools should you prepare for the bike?
To prepare your bike for riding, you don't need all the bike tools you can usually find in a workshop. The key tools will be Allen wrenches, thanks to which you will be able to check the tightness of individual screws. A degreaser and chain oil may also be helpful. If you are planning to replace brake cables or gears, it is worth having the right tools to shorten them.
How to clean the bike drivetrain after winter?
If you haven't been riding on your bike for a long time, e.g. all winter, it would be a good idea to clean the drivetrain. Getting rid of old oil and accumulated dirt from the chain will have a beneficial effect not only on its service life, but also on its quieter operation. Cleaning the chain is also a good moment to take a closer look at it - whether it is rusty or excessively long. A rusted chain should be replaced immediately, while an excessively long chain should be checked with a special tool - a chain measure. If it is pulled, it should also be replaced with a new one.
All right, but how do you wash your bike in the comfort of your own home? Especially without the risk of getting the floor dirty? The answer to this question is the Clean Box bike chain cleaning tool. Its principle of operation is simple - pour a degreaser such as KROSS D3 into the container and turn the crank a dozen times. Using brushes, the device cleans the chain very thoroughly and prevents the room in which you will do it from getting dirty. Afterwards, just wipe the chain with a cloth and apply new oil. In spring, we recommend using oil for wet conditions.
How to check any loose parts in a bike?
Preparing the bike for riding does not only include cleaning and lubricating the drivetrain. It also covers taking a careful look at all the elements that can become loose. Like the fork, for example. Whether you have a bike with a shock absorber or a rigid fork, there may be some loose spaces. Leaving them will result in worsened and more difficult cycling, but also - in very extreme cases - damage to the frame head or breaking the steering tube.
To prevent this, you need to clamp the front brake and gently move the bike back and forth with your other hand on the head of the frame. If you feel a slight movement of the fork, it will be necessary to remove such looseness. In theory, this is a very simple process, especially if you know what type of rudders you have. However, we recommend going to an authorized KROSS service centre, which will fix such loose spaces in just moments. You will find a list of KROSS points on this page.
Replacement of wires and armours in the bicycle
It is also worth replacing the wires and armours in the bike before the season starts. This is a very often overlooked element of preparing the bike for the season, but it is very important! Good and fresh wires and armours have a very positive effect on the operation of the gears and brakes. This is especially important in the case of bicycles equipped with hydraulic disc brakes as there is a need to replace the wires, but it is worth checking whether the system has not been aerated during winter. You will certainly notice the difference in braking power easily if it happened to your bike. Can the brake handle be pushed all the way to the handlebar and the bike is still going? It's a signal to check the braking system.
When starting to ride in spring, pay attention to the condition of your brake linings. Are they not excessively worn out? Take a close look and check whether you can still see all the markings indicating when they should be replaced. The right condition of the lining ensures your safety while riding - without it you can't brake! Excessively worn brakes can also damage the brake discs or the braking surface in the case of shoe brakes.
You don't want to do the inspection yourself?
If you do not want to do the inspection yourself or you do not feel like you will be able to do it, it is worth considering giving the bike to a specialised service that will do it for you. Many of them will free you from the need to prepare your bike for the season, taking on all the responsibilities and giving you a bike fully functional and ready to go. Many times, this will create a big time saving, especially if you have a lot of responsibilities on your hands. And sometimes it's better not to wait and enjoy the ride as quickly as possible. Otherwise, you may end up waiting till the middle of the summer, and the bike will still not be ready to ride. No bike enthusiast would want that!