Take a look at our mini-guide to getting a bike out of winter storage and ensuring it is safe and in good condition ready for the cycling season.
Taking a bike out of winter/ long-term storage is an exciting time. You’re getting it fixed up for a new season of cycling! Adventures ahoy! Of course, it’s been stored for a while, which means that there are a few things to do before you can safely get on the go again. In this mini-guide, we take a look at the various ways to tune a bicycle up after it has been in self storage for a long time:
A Good Scrub
You’ll need to give your bike a good scrub, even if you did scrub it up well before placing it in local London self storage. Using a bicycle cleaning solution, get in all the crevices and gaps with an old toothbrush and give the whole machine lots of rinsing so that all the suds are gone, and all the dust and debris is removed. Ideally, you will allow it to dry naturally in the sunshine.
Tyres will lose pressure over time in self storage, even if you have used a tyre rack to elevate the bike from the floor. If you press down on the tyre and it doesn’t feel firm to the touch, you need to pump it up with air. If there is a puncture, it may be that it becomes evident during this time.
Over 1000 preventable deaths, and over 300,000 preventable non fatal injuries occur on bicycles annually in the UK. There are various reasons they happen, but one is easily preventable, and that is brake failure. You should always prioritise the health of your bike brakes, particularly when your bike has come out of storage. You can check the brakes by applying them whilst you spin the wheels on the bike as it is placed upside down, replacing the pads if there is a noise or lack of pressure when they are applied. Realistically, it is safest to have a specialist check the brakes so that you know 100% that they are safe.
Lots of places offer a cheap, or even free bicycle tune-up for bicycle owners. It is where experts check the bike over and make any minor adjustments needed, and potentially give you a quote for any more extensive work that needs doing. It is important to have this done, unless you are a bike expert and know how to do everything yourself. Experts can ensure the bike is completely safe and ready for you to ride.
If there is any doubt that your bike helmet is completely safe it should be replaced before you cycle again. This includes you suspecting the helmet fell from a shelf or height whilst in London storage. It is not worth risking your health and safety for the sake of buying a new helmet. If you have stored other accessories, it is worth checking them for signs of moth damage, ripping or mould whilst you do a general equipment check so you can replace those items before getting everything out ready for a cycle only to find holy shorts and gloves.
Are You Ready For Your Next Two-Wheeled Adventure?
When you take a bike out of winter storage you’ll be much safer, and your bike will look much better, if you follow the steps above. Your bicycle is a working machine, and it pays to put the effort it to not only keep it safe in high-quality self storage, but to give it regular maintenance when removing it from winter/ long-term self storage.