Ok, you have just concluded the most intense in-home workout on your reliable exercise bike. You’ve made a lot of progress over the last months with a lot of effort, and your bike has helped a lot.
Still, if you don’t pay proper care of it, then its services won’t be around for long. Sooner than you think it will start squealing and complaining, and if you don’t head its complaints, it will fail you.
So, why not avoid all these unpleasant developments by properly maintaining your exercise bike? Besides, it is easy and can be easily done at home in just a few minutes.
Start by Cleaning the Frame… Regularly
Any type of liquids, like sweat or water, which come in contact with the frame of the bike is bad news for your exercise bike. When sweat and water drop on the frame or other parts of the bike, it corrodes the metal and deteriorates fabrics and soft-touch materials.
So, be mindful of them. So, as soon as you come down from your bike after a workout, check out for wet spots on the seat, the handlebars, the pedals and the frame. Also, make sure to disinfect the exercise bike after every use.
An easy way to do that is to make your own, homemade cleaning solution: just use 10% soap and 90% warm water. Use a spray bottle with the mixture, and spray it all over the bike, especially on parts that come in contact with your body. Make sure, though, to wipe the solution off the bike with fabric or cloth of some kind.
Otherwise, you can always use a disinfectant, or, again, create one of your own: just mix half a cup of water (preferably warm) and half a cup of vinegar. Again, fill a spray bottle and use it to disinfect the exercise bike. Of course, store-bought cleaning solutions can do the trick as well.
No matter which solution you choose, what is important is to clean your exercise bike regularly, after every singly use, and thus minimise the risk of corrosion.
Keep the Brakes in Good Condition
Exercise bikes come with two types of brakes, contact and magnetic ones. Each type requires its own maintenance routine to work properly.
Magnetic brakes are the easiest to maintain. Since they stop the flywheel with contactless magnetic force, they just require proper cleaning from time to time.
Contact brakes on the other hand, like felt pads, use friction: they apply pressure against the flywheel and impede the motion, eventually stopping it. Contact brakes need proper and regular maintenance to perform efficiently. All you actually need is a cleaning brush and some silicon-based lubricant. Here’s what you have to do:
- Loosen the brake tensioner of your exercise bike. It is very easy actually: just turn the corresponding knob counterclockwise.
- If the felt brake pads are visibly worn you must replace them.
- Find the pair of brake pads in between the flywheel and the metal bracket holding it into position, then sway the brake pad from side to side. At the same time, pull down gently on it. This way you will be able to gradually remove the brake pad from the metal bracket.
- As soon as the brake pad is removed, check it for any debris and dirt and clean it, using a brush or some sort of abrasive material that could scrub the brake pad effectively.
- When you are done, apply a silicon-based lubricant across the brake pad.
- Next, slide the brake pad back amidst the flywheel and its metal bracket. Tighten the brake tensioner.
- Inspect the setting, again and again, to make sure that it suits your needs and cycling style. That’s it! You are ready!
Check Regularly the Belt or Chain Drive
Exercise bikes come either with a chain-drive system, or a belt-drive system to provide motion to the flywheel. Regardless of what your exercise bike has, you should check the belt or chain regularly for wear or replacement.
Chain-drive mechanisms require maintenance every month, whereas belt-drive mechanisms provide a far smoother ride and need minimum maintenance. Still, the belt requires replacement after some years, depending on how much or vigorously you use the bike.
Keep your KEEP A CLEAN SPACE
Space is always an important factor when it comes to stationary gym equipment at the home. Exercise bikes, no matter how compact, do require plenty of space. They also need a surrounding are that is clean and free from other objects.
You should also keep in mind that almost all types of flooring can cause dust to accumulate in and around the exercise bike. That means that you should always make sure that the area around the bike or your home gym is regularly vacuumed – best every week. This way you ensure that the exercise bike is free from dirt and has the longest life possible.
In addition to that, always bear in mind that all home gym gear is kept in better condition when stationed in dry rooms. Under no circumstance leave your exercise bike outside for extended periods of time! Neither place nor store it in damp rooms with high levels of humidity, or in places where the temperature can drop and rise rapidly. This could damage the metal frame, the fabrics and soft-touch materials, as well as the drive mechanism of the exercise bike.