How much do you spend on maintenance?-
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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005

    How much do you spend on maintenance?

    I'm curious to know how much do you spend on maintenance and how often? As my commuter (specialized allez sport) is quickly approaching 2,000 miles it's going to be needing some parts. Tires ($60-100), brake pads ($30-50), cables (?), etc. I also need to get fenders if I plan on riding into the winter ($50).

    This bike isn't ideal for commuting. At what point do you just forgo the necessary maintenance and buy the ideal (rack/fender mounts, wider tire options, etc) commuter?

    Happy trails

  2. #2
    Mr. Shibing
    Reputation: kuratsunade's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    well, i would say it will depend on how much you spent on the bike and how much you like it and willing to though.
    i know some people don't take care of their bike properly. I was one of them, but not anymore.

    1. Tires are necessary.
    2. brake pads prices are depends on the quality of what you get. There are some standard ones very cheap and performance ones are priced pretty high.
    3. cables, if they're rusty in the plastic tubes, change them. otherwise, don't worry about it.
    4. winter times, oh joy. If the frames are steel made, if you live in the place which there are tons of salt on the road, which like here in Ohio, I would suggest you either wipe the bike every wet-ride or apply a heavy vaseline on the frame. Salt eats everything. Plus you will need fenders.

    For me, easy wipe off every week, re-grease chain every 4 weeks or depends on the road condition. I just use some very very very thin grease spray to do the job. It cleans the chain and grease it in same time. These are just something you can do it yourself.

    For every 3 months, I just bring mine to the local dealer for the regular checkup. If you have the skill, do it yourself also.

    Just a piece of mind. And the maintenance costs are all depends on the cost of the bike. I'm a college student without a car, so I‘m pretty much rely on the bike. I bought mine for around $400 then spent some extra on it, so I better take care of it good.
    A Chinaman in the States. Here we go!

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Monthly - nil (provide inner tube got puncture)

    4monthly - $4 (front Brake pad)

    6monthly - $10(change all inner tube even no puncture cos experience inner tube burst for no reason after long usuage)

    Yearly - $30(front tire and rear brakepad), It can go more , maybe crank or Rear D. Presenlty my BB is faulty with cranky sound and flex badly. But I'm waiting year end to get my bonus and change to Deore LX hollowtech.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    New chain every year. New cog every other. New BB every two-three years. Fixed gears are just so little maintenance.

  5. #5
    Ovaries on the Outside
    Reputation: umarth's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    I commute on a fixed gear. Every year I do about 4k, which usually means new tires. I clean the chain every weekend and I bought cheap clip on fenders because I commute in the rain, so I get wet anyway. Part of the cost of commuting was waterproof pants, jacket and backpack, but after the initial investment they have all been great for two years and counting. Everything else needs fixing so rarely that it really isn't worth counting.

    Yearly: tires (serfas 700c commuters are good ~40 a pair) chain? (15) and bar tape x2 (40).

    Irregular: Chainring/cog. Maybe bottom bracket, eventually brake pads. A trip to the bike store to true wheels and replace bearings.

    There is probably a cost/benefit ratio out there- buy quality components and you might be able to dodge upkeep for a while. Whether that ends up more or less expensive...

  6. #6
    Reputation: ferday's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    going 4 weeks between chain cleaning/oiling is a terrible idea.

    i commute SS (not fixed) and usually 3 sets of brake pads (1 in the spring/summer/fall, and 2 sets in the winter). 1 chain per season provided i take care of it, maybe 2 when i get lazy.
    what would rainbow unicorn do?

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Jul 2003

    Well let's see....

    I tear the bike down at least once a year and do a complete overhaul. And over the years I've done some upgrades to make this less of a pain. I used to have to rebuild hubs and head set, but those are cartirdge bearing units now so not needed until the bearings go south, and I've been running on them for 2 years now with 0 problems. Just pull things appart, inspect, clean and service the free hub. I suspect that I'll be replacing some bearings soon though. For the stuff I replace at least once a year, cables, housing, brake pads (I use discs so it's usually once a year for pad replacement), lube for the chain as needed, chain at least once a year (but not till it's worn out and I can usually get a full year on a chain some times less). All total for things that I replace or do every year, about $75.00 to $100.00. Some years of course are higher than that. Things like cassettes, chainrings, derailleurs, etc. have to be replaced when needed. That doesn't include my time. But I love working on bikes anyway so that's more like fun to me. Things like cleaning are done as necessary. And that's just an average, in wet years lube cost, cables and housing, brake pads costs usualy go up as they often need to be done more than once. And I may tear the bike down to clean and inspect more than once as well.

    Anyway that's about it as far as parts and lube costs unless something breaks or I get an urge to try some new component. At 10 the cost it'd still be cheaper than the care and feeding of my car!

    Good Dirt
    "I do whatever my Rice Cripsies tell me to!"

  8. #8
    No-Brakes Cougar
    Reputation: Gary the No-Trash Cougar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    As you can see from the above responses, it depends on a lot of factors like the environment you commute in, the quality of components you use, how anal you are about cleaning/maintaining things and even just some dumb luck (or lack thereof). I'm of the "keep an eye out for wear and tear and fix/replace things when they break" school of bicycle maintainence. If you like your bike and enjoy riding it, and it's not going to cost the equivalent of a new bike to fix it, then spend the money to get it done right.
    R.I.P. Ronnie James Dio ~ July 10, 1942 May 16, 2010

  9. #9
    Bedwards Of The West
    Reputation: CommuterBoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    What are you people doing to your chains that you have to replace them so much? I'm on year 3 with the current chain, at the end of the year it will be at 6000 miles. I live in the sierras...rain/snow/sleet/hail, etc, and I ride all winter, partly on dirt roads.

    Anyway, the above comments are good... a lot of factors at work in the maintenance department. part of my commute being on dirt is an added factor...especially when it gets wet and you get mud/wet sand involved. I go through disc brake pads pretty quickly in the winter.

    Personally, I have a monthly gas budget... and I hardly dip into it at all when I'm riding to work every day. I use my gas money to buy parts/clothes/etc... a couple little things a month when I need them. This keeps the wife and my addiction to the bike happy.

    Another factor is doing your own maintenance. It's really not difficult, and it's fun. going into the shop to work on the bike is like therapy for me. My bike has never seen the inside of a LBS. I would never trust anyone else to work on it. You can afford better stuff if you're not paying someone for labor.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  10. #10
    Fat-tired Roadie
    Reputation: AndrwSwitch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    I commute on a bike I bought for $95. I've spent very little on maintenance since picking it up in December - some initial work when I bought it, including repacking a bearing, replacing a bad shifter, and installing fenders, a rack, a collapsible wire baskets, and since then I've had to replace a chain and a front wheel that got badly tacoed when I got cut off and hit the car. Hopefully I damaged their paintwork, because I replaced the wheel for $30 and paint touch-ups for cars cost more than that.

    Over time, I expect to replace tires, brake pads, and drivetrain parts. I try to restrict myself to work necessary to keep the bike rolling and safe since its purpose is to take abuse on behalf of my fun bikes. Replacing the chain is a preventive maintenance thing, though - it keeps the rings and freewheel from getting worn out prematurely.

    I'm not sure what the ideal commuter is. To me, it's a bike that I can ride to work, in whatever clothes and shoes I want to or have to wear to the job, leave locked outside all day or all night, and then ride home on, possibly picking up groceries on the way. I also might have several pounds of hand tools in the baskets, and an 18V drill with accessories is a possibility as well. It makes a lot of sense to me to get an older used bike for not much money, so I don't have to stress about it being outside all day.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jawnn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009

    three bikes

    with tree bikes I have lost count....mostly just chains and tires once a year...

  12. #12
    No-Brakes Cougar
    Reputation: Gary the No-Trash Cougar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterBoy
    What are you people doing to your chains that you have to replace them so much? .
    I was wondering that myself. Epic cross-chaining? Dry lube?
    R.I.P. Ronnie James Dio ~ July 10, 1942 May 16, 2010

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