This question is often asked by novice mountain biking enthusiasts who want to purchase a new or a used bike.
Depending on where you live, the average cost of a bike tune-up costs will be between $60 and $100. You will be offered two options at most bike mechanic shops:
- A Minor/Basic Tune-up that is priced between $50-90
- Major tune-up will cost you anywhere between $120 and $150.
The cost will vary depending on what’s included in the tune-up. Let’s take a more detailed look at the pricing.
Why Pay For A Bike Tune-Up?
If you are looking for the cost of a bike tune-up, chances are that you care about your bike and want to keep it maintained.
However, bike tune-ups aren’t cheap and this could be a deterrent in your decision-making if you want to convince yourself.
Like any other vehicle be it a car or a motorcycle, bicycles also need regular maintenance to perform well and have a prolonged life.
Tune-ups aren’t only about performance though, they allow you to prevent any potential safety issues and ensure that your bike is safe to ride.
In any type of mechanism that involves moving metal parts, it is important to properly lubricate them preventing wear and tear and allowing optimum performance.
Regardless of the conditions, you are riding in, whether it is the pavement or through mud, a poorly maintained bicycle will quickly wear down. Regular tune-ups will prevent these issues.
Another very important point of bike tune-ups is that they catch problems before they can get serious and expensive.
For example, it is better to detect and fix a faulty fork before it gets totally broken and becomes 3x more expensive to fix. Even if it’s costly, a bike tune-up will save you money in the long term.
Also, you will have a smooth-riding bike!
What A Bike Tune-up Includes
This changes slightly from bike shop to the bike shop, however, most places will have main services included in a tune-up that is core to your bike.
As we mentioned earlier, it’s likely that you will have two options to choose from in minor and major tune-up. Here’s what you can expect from a bike tune-up:
- Check Tire pressure
- Adjust Gears, Brakes, and Cabling
- Drivetrain Service
- Clean and Degrease Chain
- Clean and Degrease Bike
- Minor Wheel Truing
- Adjust Headset and Bottom Bracket
- Check and Tighten all screws and bolts
- Lubrication of moving parts
- Safety Check
Where basic tune-ups typically consist of minor cleaning and adjustment, Major tune-ups usually involve replacing cables, chains, and cogs, and even disassembly for cleaning and lubrication.
Tune-up of your bike in the workshop does not require a lot of time. As for cleaning, it all depends on the type of practice.
For mountain biking, it is recommended to do cleaning after each outing; for the road one, every 3-4 outings or after an outing in the rain, and for the one for urban use, cleaning from time to time will be appropriate, depending on the temperature, the route taken (asphalt versus gravel) and the frequency of use.
What You Can Do At Home
Proper Inflating of Tires
A poorly inflated bicycle tire is prone to bursting. To inflate the tires you need a foot pump with a bar and a PSI indicator. You can see the letters PSI written next to your tire number.
This number tells you how much air you need to push. Generally, 80 – 130 PSI is sufficient for road bikes, 30 – 50 PSI for mountain bike tires, and 50 – 70 PSI for hybrid tires.
This is simple enough, but if you notice air escaping from the tube or not inflating while pumping, it may mean that the pump is not properly connected.
In this case, try inflating the tires again. Your tires naturally lose pressure over time during use. It is generally recommended to have the tires checked every week to ensure that the ride is smooth and efficient.
Lubrication of the Pedals and Chain
Check the entire chain by regularly looking to the side of your bike and lifting the rear wheel off the ground. Slowly turn one of the pedals with your free hand, inspecting the individual chain links for dirt buildup and rust.
Check for adequate lubrication by listening for squeaking sounds. If you have one or more of these problems, your chain needs cleaning. Things to consider about oil maintenance:
- Squeeze the oil bottle and turn the pedal in the opposite direction while applying.
- Wrap the chain around the chainrings several times while continuing to apply oil to each part of the chain.
- Brush the connections with a firm brush or an old toothbrush.
- Wipe off excess oil with a clean, dry cloth. Do not skip this step, excessive lubrication can, on the contrary, attract new dirt.
- You can use a chain cleaner for a more thorough cleaning.
- Always use a cleaner and oil designed for bicycle drivetrains.
- If you will be cycling in wet weather, choose a wet oil. Rain, snow, and muddy roads can wipe dry oil from the bike chain. Therefore, wet lubrication will be more durable. If you live in a dry climate, choose a dry oil. If you are cycling in dry weather conditions, wet lubrication is not necessary and it attracts more dirt than dry lubrication. Dry lubrication will keep your chain cleaner. However, you usually need to renew this process every 80-160 km.
- Do not lubricate your bicycle chain with WD-40. Only use lubricants specifically designed for use in bicycle chains. WD-40 is a solvent that evaporates quickly and contains only a small amount of oil. This product can cause dirt and dust to accumulate on the chain.
Cleaning the Bike
If there’s one thing you can do to prolong the life of your bike, it’s to keep the bike parts and frame clean. You don’t need a special cleaning kit for this; a bucket of water, soap, sponge, and an old toothbrush will do.
But a good degreaser will help break up the oil and dust from the chain and sprockets. Rinse all parts of the bike with water before cleaning (do not increase the pressure too much if you are rinsing with the hose).
Use a cleaner and degreaser (bicycle-specific, of course) on the bike fender, frame, chain, gears, and gears. You need to make sure you dry the bike thoroughly after rinsing. Because water is one of the biggest enemies of rust.
The drivetrain (chain, chainring, rudder, and gearshift) quickly becomes clogged with oil and dust when wet.
It is therefore important that you remove all dirt from this part, especially if it is wet. Making sure to avoid braking surfaces such as rims and disc brake rotors, you can buff the bike frame with PTFE spray or silicone bike polish and then wipe it off with a paper towel.
So you can also help prevent mud and dust from sticking to your next ride.
Whether you’re just commuting or using it for sports, your bike should always be clean and ready for use. A bike’s maintenance schedule can vary depending on how often and under what conditions it is used.
Cyclists in the field, on rough roads, or on rainy days need more frequent maintenance and cleaning than others.
Bicycle Seat Adjustment
If you have piriformis syndrome (a condition in which the piriformis muscle in the hip area causes spasm and hip pain), try raising or lowering your saddle slightly to make the bike’s seat more comfy. But, if you experience pain while cycling, you may have lowered your saddle too low.
It is recommended that the saddle length is generally at waist level. If you experience uncomfortable friction while riding, it may mean you need a seat with a narrower nose.
Women have a wider pelvis. This means many women need a wider saddle (preferably a space in the middle of the saddle to avoid pressure while riding)