Today we are exploring How to Storing Your Bike in Winter? Both the owner of a road bike and a simple cyclist who bought an inexpensive model for rare trips think about how to store a bicycle in winter. The problem of storing two-wheeled vehicles worries everyone who has a bicycle. Even having a warm garage, the perfect place to ride out the winter, forces the owner to deal with some issues.
Why you should take care of how to store your bike in winter
Equipment requires care and maintenance, and this fully applies to cycling. Stretched cables stretch, and rubber bands and seals dry out and crack. Rust causes many problems, which reduces the performance of unprotected places. Fans of carbon frames have to contend with temperature changes that lead to the formation of microcracks.
I immediately want to answer “no” to the question of whether it is possible to store a bicycle on a balcony in winter, but everything is not so clear. With proper preparation, even a balcony will become a good storage place, because low temperatures themselves do not harm equipment. Cars drive normally all year round, and they use inferior materials. In addition, a running engine creates a significant temperature difference and high humidity. However, cars drive for several decades thanks to the preparation for the cold season. And the cyclist should think about how to maintain the health of his iron horse.
Assemblies that require preparation for storage
Almost every bike node can be prepared for a long winter. To do this, it is necessary to relieve the load on the tightening parts and elements and lubricate the rubber and metal surfaces.
Chain and sprockets
Ideally, the chain should be removed, cleaned of dirt, and placed in a kerosene or oil bath. It is not easy to dismantle the sprockets, so they are simply washed with warm water, after which they are lubricated.
Front and rear derailleur
Metal parts are cleaned of dirt and dust, after which they are abundantly lubricated with a water-repellent agent. To reduce cable stretch, the derailleur positions are moved to the smallest chainrings front and rear.
Rims and tires
They do not require special training, but you should take care of how to properly store the bike in winter with the wheels not removed. Because with a long stop, the nipple will slowly let air through. The tubes will deflate and a bump will be imprinted on the tire of a stationary bike. It is advisable to bring the pressure to normal for this model before conservation. Some recommendations advise bringing the pressure to half and periodically pumping up. However, practice shows that everyday worries will distract from winter care. It also makes no sense to disassemble the wheels, winter will not harm aluminum rims.
Hydraulic brakes are not afraid of the cold. They are filled with non-freezing liquid, which is not afraid of low temperatures. You should not worry about the condition of the brake discs either, especially in no case should you apply lubricant to them.
V-breaks are ready for winter in seconds – you only need to unfasten the fastening above the wheel to loosen the cables.
Those who continue to ride in the cold season are aware of the effect of reducing the effectiveness of depreciation. Oil and grease thicken, and the shock absorber becomes stiff. But otherwise, the condition of the fork does not cause concern, from the inside it is covered with a reliable oil layer.
Leather saddles are lubricated with a small amount of oil or a special compound based on beeswax before preservation. Moreover, lubrication must be carried out both from the outside and from the inside. But leatherette and plastic care does not require.
You should not heed the advice “lightly grease the entire surface of the frame with an oil rag.” For carbon, this recommendation is meaningless, iron is preserved under the paintwork. If we take aluminum structures, then everything is even simpler. For example, the Titan Bike is made from 6061 aluminum, which is used in the aircraft industry. Has anyone seen a painted plane? When exposed to air, aluminum creates a thin oxide film that prevents oxidation.
Proper washing before winter
Fans who think about how storing a bike in winter will affect its technical condition in the new season often just oil the chain and send it to the balcony. It is not recommended to do this, as the lubricant will “cement” the dirt, which will cause a lot of trouble during the operation.
The first step is to thoroughly wash the bike. But at the same time, it is not recommended to go to a car wash, as water under high pressure penetrates the bushings and carriage, literally pushing grains of sand there. Although the thick factory grease of these units will protect against rust, each grain of sand will serve as an abrasive. Therefore, it is best to wash the bike by hand, in the bathroom, or near the house.
A common kitchen cleaner is used to remove old grease. The washing sequence is as follows:
- The gentle jet of water removes the top layer of dirt;
- Stagnant lumps are soaked in hard-to-reach places;
- The initial wash is carried out with a brush;
- A layer of fat is removed with a sponge with detergent;
- The bike is rinsed with a jet of water.
When washing, it is necessary to rinse the sponge periodically so that the sand does not scratch the paintwork. Do not apply lubricant immediately after washing, the bike should dry for a couple of hours. This rule does not apply in the summer, since during operation the moisture will be forced out.
Step-by-step instructions for preparing for bike conservation
After washing, it’s time to take care of the technical condition. If there was no place in the apartment where to store the bike in winter, then it makes no sense to disassemble it. It can go to the balcony or garage in the assembled state, and the less often the bolts are twisted and untwisted, the better. The preparation procedure without disassembly is as follows:
- Adjust the pressure in the wheel chambers.
- Lubricate the chain. If possible, remove it and put it in a plastic bag.
- Apply grease to sprockets.
- Unfasten the clips of the V-break brakes.
- Lightly oil the leather saddle.
- Lubricate all rubber parts, anthers, and seals with silicone grease.
- Move the gear shifters to the smallest sprockets.
- To reduce the load on the carbon frame, it is necessary to snap off the eccentrics of the seat clamp and wheel mounts.
To protect the cables from rust and facilitate sliding, they must be lubricated. But the oil should get under the “shirt”, for this, they use an ordinary medical syringe with a needle. After application, it is necessary to shift gears several times and apply the brakes.
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A clean bicycle chain can be placed not in a bag, but in a half-liter plastic bottle, add a little oil and shake it a couple of times, then leave it there until the start of the season. When the time comes, the oil is poured, and the bottle is cut with a knife.
Preparing a bike is an excellent opportunity to study its technical condition. On clean parts, cracks, dents, and frame chips are visible. You should pay attention to the tires, look for side cuts and hernias, and assess the condition of the tread.
How to choose a place to store your bike
The ideal place for the preservation of all details would be a room with minimal humidity. In this case, the temperature does not play a critical role, if there are no sharp changes in it. There is a lot of controversy about whether it is possible to store a bicycle in the winter on the balcony.
Proponents of balcony content argue that “this is iron and nothing will happen to it.” Opponents say that it is impossible to protect him from adverse weather conditions here. And they are right, but it’s not always possible to allocate a separate room to a two-wheeled friend, you have to adapt to the existing conditions.
If the bike is stored in a closed, even cool loggia, it will need to be protected from the ultraviolet rays of the sun. To do this, the bike is covered with a cloth or oilcloth. If the balcony is in the open air, then you will have to get a waterproof cover.
Before you store your bike in the garage in winter, you need to find out its temperature conditions. In the ideal version of a dry, warm garage, it will be enough to put it in a corner and that’s it. You do not need to remove the chain, although loosening the cables and adjusting the tire pressure do not hurt. It is better to refuse a damp garage, the frost of a closed balcony will cause much less harm than dampness.
Choosing a storage location
So, if the question is, where is it better to store a bicycle, and there are several answers, then the choice should go in the following sequence:
- Warm dry garage;
- Glazed loggia;
- Cold garage;
- Open balcony.
Bicycle shops now offer winter storage services, which is also a good option. There, not only optimal conditions are provided, here the masters will prepare the bike for the new season.
The place where you should never leave your vehicle is the entrance or stairwell. Even the chain that seems to be the most reliable will not survive the attack of intruders. A bicycle lock bites in a few seconds and a seemingly reliable lock will not last more than a minute.
How to store a bicycle in an apartment – hanging devices
If the area of \u200b\u200b the room allows, the ideal way would be to hang the bike. In this case, you do not have to worry about tire pressure, and it will take up little space. Hanging options include vertical and horizontal storage. In this case, it is not necessary to dismantle individual elements to remove the wheels.
The simplest mount can be used not only in winter but also in summer. It is a hook under the frame, located at the level of the belt. Allows you to stably position the vehicle at a low height. The pluses include the ease with which it can be obtained. The downside is the need for a lot of space.
In stores, you can find another device for wall mounting – a hook for the front wheel. It is nailed at a height of 160-180 cm and allows you to hang the bike almost under the ceiling. So it takes up much less space, but it is more difficult to remove it.
Recently, a rope suspension system has appeared. The handlebar and saddle cling to the hooks, after which the bike is pulled up to the ceiling.
Extreme home-made people have come up with a more compact way of suspension, in which the bike literally “lies” on the ceiling, without occupying the usable area of the room and without interfering with movement.
Dismantling, partial and complete
If it’s hard to find space in an apartment or garage, then in ten minutes you can turn the bike into a set of easily assembled parts. For this you need:
- Open the pedals. It must be remembered that the left and right pedals have different threads.
- Unclip the eccentric and pull out the seat post.
- Unfasten the chain.
- Loosen the steering wheel mounting nut and turn it 90 0.
- Remove the front and rear wheels.
Pedals are recommended to be screwed in from the back, so they will not be lost. However, before that, it is advisable to wrap them with rags and tape so as not to scratch the frame. When reassembling, pay attention to which way the front wheel rotates. For disc brakes, this recommendation is irrelevant.
To completely remove the steering wheel, you will need to unscrew the 4 mounting bolts. It is not worth removing the handles of switches and brakes from the steering wheel, it is much easier to pull the steering wheel with clamps to the frame.
Removal will take a little time, but during assembly, you need to control the force so as not to pinch the carbon or aluminum. The steering wheel that has developed at speed will not give pleasure to the cyclist.
When disassembling, do not forget to screw back all the bolts and nuts, and it is advisable to put a drop of oil on the threads of the pedals; lubricating the bike in winter makes it possible to provide care to hidden places. At the same time, you should not be afraid of too easy unwinding either – thanks to the versatile thread, the bike pedal never unscrews from the cranks on its own.
With proper care, the resource of a high-quality assembly bike will be not two or even five seasons. Of course, a lot depends on the load, but with regular maintenance, even after a decade, the frame and the main components will serve faithfully.