A False Sense of Security
by Lauren Baker, Bella Public Relations
You just got your bike back from the shop, following a tune-up. You think you’re ready to hop on and go, feeling secure in your bike mechanic’s abilities. Is this a good practice? Not always.
Bike mechanics are only human, so it’s well worth testing your bike before you hit the road or trail. I make sure my brakes work before each and every ride. Stopping is important.
It’s also a good idea to check your air pressure before each ride. Air pressure that’s too low or too high can cause a blow-out. Ideal air pressure will vary with your tires and your personal preference. Becoming familiar with what’s ideal for you is a great idea.
I also like to do a quick check of my derailleur before heading out on a significant ride. A once-around-the-block ride lets me put my bike through its paces, making sure it shifts smoothly and consistently.
If I’m going to find a problem with my bike, I like to do so when I’m close to home — rather than miles down the road or trail. If a part feels loose or something doesn’t sound right, get it checked out — even if your bike is fresh from the shop. Mechanical problems can cause safety issues and/or leave you stranded.