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Prepairing your bike for winter

Winter is quickly approaching, and if you’re not keen on braving the slushy streets on arctic days then it's almost time to hang up your bike for the season. You most likely want to keep your bike in top condition so it's ready the moment the snow melts. Follow these simple steps to make sure your bike makes it through the winter unscathed.

Use a slightly damp cloth to wipe all the grime and dirt from the frame. Make sure to clean all the crevasses and the spaces between your frame and anything you have attached. If dirt is allowed to build up in these areas, the vibrations when riding your bike may wear off the protective coating and allow rust to form. Since you're going over every square inch of your bike take a moment to adjust all the bolts, seat, gears and brakes.

Purchase some good quality oil and carefully lubricate each link. Your chain is typically 57 links, made up of 570 different parts. In fact, a chain contains more parts then used in your entire bike. Do not use spray lubricants as these can be messy and ineffective. A lubricant that you can precisely apply with a nozzle is preferred. Starting at the lowest portion of the chain, apply the lubricant to the inside track. Slowly turn a peddle until your entire chain is lubricated. Wipe off any oil that may have dripped onto the frame. You can apply the same oil to all the moving pieces of your gears.

Over time, the air will slowly escape from your tires. If your tires deflate, the pressure of your bike against the floor may weaken areas of your tire that are compressed. Take a moment and make sure your tires are inflated to the recommended psi. Hang up your bike on hooks to help alleviate the pressure the tires will be enduring over the course of the winter.

Indoors, or in your garage; your bike should be stored in a clean, dry place. Damp locations may promote rusting, while dirty and dusty locations may cause sludge to build up inside the gears, on the chain and in all moving parts.

Keeping your bike clean and tuned up, along with storing it properly will ensure your investment in healthy living will keep paying off for years to come.


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