Rinse your Bike
Bikes are made to get dirty. They want to be ridden in mud and to enjoy nature as much as you do. They still need TLC though, and the first place we start is with a good wash. Using regular water pressure from the hose, spray your bike down getting the big chunks of dirt and surface dust. DO NOT USE A HIGH-PRESSURE HOSE. This is just a rinse, and using a High-Pressure Hose can force water into places you don’t want, like your fork seals.
Wash your bike
Once your bike has been rinsed, use a non-abrasive cleaning product (Bike Market has some great options), to get your bike nice and soapy. Use soft bristle brushes, a soft cloth, (and a chain cleaner if you have one), to get all the dirt and grime off of your bicycle. Once every inch has been covered, give your bike a light rinse again. Ensure all soap has been rinsed off before moving on. We strongly advise against using regular daily cleaners such as Sunlight, as this tends to leave a residue/contaminant on your brake pads and disks, which in turn will lead to squeaking, as well as possible poor performance of those components.
Lube your chain
As arguably the most important moving part on any bike, a smooth chain is of utmost importance. With the lube nozzle directly over the chain on the rear cassette, rotate your cranks backwards while depositing a small, constant amount of lube until the chain has been completely covered. Then rotate forwards, changing slowly through each gear, until the lube is evenly distributed along the entire chain and cassette. We recommend wax based lubricant during dry conditions. Avoid getting any lubricant on your brake disks and pads, as such we recommend staying away from aerosol lubricants.
Keep your Tyres Pumped Up
As all tyre pressures differ, it’s important to know what pressure your tyres should be at any given time. If you’re unsure, your Bike Market representative will be able to help you out. Before setting out on every ride, you should ensure your tyres are at the correct pressure. Under inflated tyres can be a danger in corners, they will not grip as well, and you run the risk of your tyres blowing off of the rim in a hard turn. Over inflated tyres can be just as dangerous, as you run the risk of crashing in a corner when you expect grip and it’s just not there. Over inflated tyres also attribute to a jarring ride as your tyres are not absorbing as much of the shock as they should.
Ensure your Suspension is dialled in
Suspension can be a difficult nut to crack, but it’s a lot easier than most people think. Your Bike Market representative will be able to show you how to pump your suspension to the required PSI, as well as set the sag level on your rear suspension. Most forks have a small table printed on the side of the fork arm which will let you know to what pressure you should pump your fork to, with regards to your weight. And that’s all you really need to do to be Ready to Ride!
The speed at which your shocks return to their original position after being compressed is an incredibly important aspect of off-road riding. If your rebound is too slow, your suspension will not be back and ready to go when you hit your next bump. If your rebound is too fast, the bike will be kicking back at you every time you hit a divot. Neither of these scenarios is ideal, but rebound is a quick and easy change to make, even on the fly.
Keep your sealant topped up
Most bikes are Tubeless Ready, and if not, we can talk about options to get it to that point. Once you have converted to the wonderful world of Tubeless tyres, it’s important your sealant is kept at an optimal level, and your tyres are rotated often. Bike Market offers fantastic quality sealant at great prices. Topping up your sealant is a fairly simple process, but tends to be incredibly messy. We can certainly show you how it’s done, but keep in mind you will need a strong burst of initial air in to the tyres to ensure your tyre seats properly on the rim, and you always run the risk of sealant getting everywhere. Rather bring it in to Bike Market for one of our qualified mechanics to do the dirty work for you.
Tighten those bolts!
A bike is only as strong as its weakest part. Before every ride make sure all nuts and bolts are fastened as tightly as they should be (Whilst also being aware of over tightening). Stems and brake levers are the biggest culprits, as well as being the most dangerous of parts to leave not fully tightened.