How Long Does A Mountain Bike Last? We Have The Answer For You

Regardless of how much you take care of your mountain bike, it can’t last forever. After a while, you would have to replace some parts like the chain or the wheels, or even the entire bike. 

This is discouraging for many people who want to buy a mountain bike because it can cost thousands of dollars.

Different factors determine how long a mountain bike would last and if you’re considering buying one continue reading below to know more.

How Long May Your Mountain Bike Last?

A high-quality, well-maintained, and expensive bike would last for up to 20 years, although various factors affect this. This doesn’t mean that you won’t have to replace different parts of the bike during this time, including the wheels, brakes, and chains. 

Also, although a mountain bike can last for that long, it does not offer the same value as when you first purchased it. A mountain bike starts losing value from the moment it has been set on the trail.

Your mountain bike would lose a little over 25% of its value from the first year, which is worse than your experience with a car. It depreciates by about 35% in the second year and almost 45% by the third year. If you decide to sell your mountain bike ten years after owning it, it would have lost about 85% of its value.

So, it’s much better to keep your mountain bike maintained, up, and running, even if you have purchased a new one. Or, you can replace the existing parts of the bike and get it a paint job to improve its value for resale. 

Even if your entire mountain bike can last for a very long time, this is not the same case with the different parts of the bike.

How Long Each Bike Part Can Last

Drivetrain 

A mountain bike’s drivetrain lasts for up to 15,000 miles before being replaced, although the components have different lifespans. As long as it is adequately maintained, you can use it fully before replacing it to avoid accidents while riding.

The chain on the drivetrain usually wears out first, followed by the chainrings and cassette. Your drivetrain can last for a shorter time if you ride your mountain bike often in harsh conditions. It gets covered in dirt, dust, and mud and can also get covered by rust if it’s not stored correctly. 

Also, avoid storing your bike outside and clean it often to keep the drivetrain in good condition. Once you notice that other parts around the drivetrain, like the chain and derailleur, are worn out, you should replace them along with them.

Chain 

The standard mountain bike chain lasts for an average of 750 miles, although some remain fully functional until 2000 miles. Your bike chain can break, and you’ll have to replace it immediately. But if this doesn’t happen, bike chains still go through wear and tear after 2000 miles.

If your mountain bike chain is worn out, it stretches out and makes it uncomfortable and even dangerous to ride. It also becomes rusty, making it stiff and easy to break at any time. You can recognize chain wear when the chain is stretched out from the chainring.

You can make your bike chain last longer and prevent rusting through proper maintenance. This involves storing your bike indoors and lubricating it regularly. You should also put enough lubricant on the chain, as too little causes friction, contributing to wear and tear.

Brakes 

Another essential part of your mountain bike is the brake, although this comes with different components. The brake pads of your MTB can last between 25,000 miles and 60,000 miles, depending on how well you maintain it. 

Another component is the brake disc, which will last between 80,000 and 120,000 miles. If your MTB is fitted with a hydraulic disc brake, it lasts for a shorter time, 1,250 miles. Except you have an accident and your brake is damaged, you will only need to replace it because of wear and tear.

With continual use, the brake pad and discs will get worn out. But, you can also make it last longer through proper maintenance. Whenever your bike pads become low, you should replace them, as they are affordable to maintain. It’s dangerous if they give out while riding.

Suspension 

Another part of your mountain bike is its suspension, and its quality reduces as you ride constantly. Your MTB suspension would need servicing annually to keep it in proper working conditions.

The suspension seals will crack and wear out because of constant riding, and their performance can even reduce with debris and dirt entering the chamber. Although you can stop it from breaking through proper maintenance, you’ll need to replace it eventually. 

If you ride your mountain bike regularly, especially in bad riding conditions, you need to check it and service it often to prevent damage. 

Frame 

Bike frames last the longest on a mountain bike, and if properly maintained, you might not have to replace it for the entire 20 years that you might end up using the bike. 

These frames can last between 6 and 40 years, depending on how well you maintain them, the external riding conditions, and the frame material.

If your mountain bike frame is made with titanium or carbon, it would last way longer than other types and might even last longer than the bike or the owner. An aluminum bike frame would last between 5 and 10 years.

Thus, wear and tear on a bike frame is less likely to happen, except you don’t maintain it regularly. But while riding, your bike frame can also get broken, which would reduce the performance. You’ll need to get a new mountain bike rather than trying to replace it.

Wheels (Rims and Tires) 

The rims and tires of a mountain bike make up the wheels, and they wear out with use, especially the tires. While tires and rims are meant to last for a long time, monitoring them is also essential. 

When the thread gets low or the rim becomes rusted, you will need to replace the wheels. Luckily, you won’t spend a lot on buying a new one.

While you use the mountain bike, you can’t avoid riding on rough terrains and hard braking, all of which cause the tire to wear out. The back tire usually wears out first, and punctures can increase damage while riding.

Mountain bike tires can last for between 1000 and 4000 miles, depending on the type and how well you maintain it. Talking about rims, it can have a short lifespan at 1500 miles or keep on working up to 12000 miles.  

FAQs

How often should I service my mountain bike? 

It’s important to service your mountain bike regularly, and fortunately, it doesn’t take a long time to do so. When servicing, you need to wipe the bike chain, clean the bike, and check tire pressure.

You should also check on the mountain bike after every ride. And after every four rides, you should check the brake pads, bolt tension, chain wear, air fork, and shock.

How best should I store my mountain bike? 

You should avoid leaving your mountain bike outside for storage, as it can quickly get rusty, worn out, or affected by weather conditions. When storing for more extended periods, you should use a bike cover and wall-mounted options to protect it.

When should I upgrade my bike parts? 

You should upgrade your mountain bike parts whenever you notice that they have rusted or worn out or if you have completed their expected lifespan. But if your mountain bike is very old and you’ll have to replace all the parts, it might be more cost-effective to purchase a new one.

How many miles can a mountain bike last? 

With proper maintenance, you can get up to 50,000 miles out of a mountain bike or even more. Usually, by 50,000 miles, riders purchase a new MTB since the performance won’t be the same. 

How often should you replace your mountain bike?

Although your mountain bike can last for up to 20 years, it might not work as well when it’s that old. You should purchase a new mountain bike after riding it for 50,000 miles or if the different components are faulty and all need to be replaced. Also, if you’re in the mood for a new mountain bike, you can purchase a new one. 

Conclusion

The best way to make your mountain bike last longer you should properly maintain it, as we have regularly stated in this guide. You need to prevent problems caused by rust and dust, clean it after each ride, and replace any component that has experienced wear and tear. 

Also, luckily, mountain bike parts are more affordable to purchase so that you won’t break the bank with maintenance. This way, it will always perform at its best and last for up to 20 years. 

Photo of author
Written By Robert Gibbons
From riding to school since the age of 13, attending BMX races and events with his dad to himself conquering 50+ trails across the globe. For Rob, his Giant Stance 29 2 2020 is the friend that makes everything better. He is also a proud member of the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA).

Leave a Comment