While mountain biking is a recreational activity, it can also be an investment.
For those who are casual riders or beginners, buying the right bike can be tricky. It’s important to consider where you plan on riding and what type of terrain you’ll encounter.
The last thing you want to do is purchase something that will break down after one ride!
That’s why knowing how long bikes typically last (and if they’re worth repairing) is important for any rider considering purchasing their first bike.
How long do mountain bikes last on average?
As with any product, it’s hard to give a universal answer because there are several factors that go into how long mountain bikes last.
However, if you follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for maintenance and fix up your bike every few years, they can last anywhere from five to 30 years!
It all depends on the condition of the bike and the care you put into it. Bikes with regular wear and tear, such as brake pads and chain replacements, will last for around three to five years.
Even mountain bikes that are used for professional racing can be refurbished and sold at a fair market price.
What are the most common reasons for a bike to break down?
Bikes are complicated machines that need to be taken care of properly. There are several issues that can arise, but the most common problems include:
1) Chain deteriorates
As your bike chain is used, the link pins are more likely to corrode.
These pinholes can gradually become oversized and too wide for the links they are meant to support.
When this happens, it’s time to replace the chain. Additionally, a new chain can create a shift in the drive train, so it’s important to sync the gears once you’ve replaced the chain.
2) Brakes wear out
Just like any other mechanical piece of equipment, brakes need occasional maintenance and replacement.
If you notice your brakes are feeling loose or making weird squealing sounds, bring them to your local bike shop for a tune-up.
Additionally, if there is a large number of brake pads left, you may be able to have them turned around for an additional fee.
3) Cables stretch over time
Over time, cables stretch and can cause shifting issues. Not only is this dangerous but also prevents the ability to easily shift your gears.
If you’re having a hard time shifting through your gears or they won’t change at all, chances are your cables need to be tightened or replaced.
4) Derailleur gets stuck in one gear position
If your derailleur has been moving slowly, making a weird clicking noise, or seems bent out of shape, chances are it needs to be fixed or completely replaced.
Usually, if the derailleur is just slightly off its track then you only need to re-adjust it.
However, if the derailleur is bent or completely broken then it needs to be replaced entirely.
5) Fork wears out
The fork on a bike absorbs most of the shock from obstacles you come across during your ride.
If you notice an increasing number of rattling noises or hard riding, chances are your fork is loose or needs to be tightened.
What are common indicators of a bike being worn out?
Aside from the general signs of wear, such as rust on metal components, there are more specific things you can look for when determining if your bike is time to retire.
1)The handlebars will show signs of wear.
If the handles on your bike have been bent back, chipped away at, or completely broken off, chances are they need to be replaced with a new set.
Additionally, if your hand grips are no longer staying in place or causing you discomfort, they need to be replaced.
2)The gearing system will show signs of wear.
If there is a lot of rust on the spindles and gears themselves, it’s time for a professional tune-up to prevent future problems. You should also pay attention to the pedals, since they are another common wear point.
3)The wheels might be worn out.
If your wheels are no longer round or wobble while you’re riding then it’s time for some attention.
If the wheel is bent outward at all, you need to have the axle replaced.
Additionally, if your spokes are sticking out or are broken, chances are you need to have the wheel completely replaced.
4)The frame needs attention when it starts rusting.
If your frame is made up of mostly metal components then it’s susceptible to damage over time.
If the paint on the frame starts chipping off or showing signs of rust in sections, chances are it’s time for a replacement.
What are some ways to keep your bike in good condition so it lasts longer?
Bicycles require some maintenance to remain functional and safe for use. There are several steps you can take to prolong the life of your bike, including:
1)Keep equipment in good working order.
Before you begin any ride check all of the equipment on your bike. Make sure there aren’t cracks or loose pieces that may come off during your ride.
Additionally, you should have a repair kit in your pocket or backpack so you can fix any issues that come up during the ride.
2)Inspect the tires every time before riding.
Make sure there isn’t any debris in between the treads of your tires and they’re fully inflated. If not, then use your pump or go to a bike shop for a tune-up.
Additionally, if there is a large amount of brake pads left, you may be able to have them turned around for an additional fee.
3)Check for cables stretch over time.
Over time, cables stretch and can cause shifting issues.
Not only is this dangerous to you, but dangerous for other drivers on the road.
Make sure your cables aren’t stretched and make adjustments accordingly to fix any problems.
4)Keep the bike inside when not in use.
If you don’t keep your bike inside when it’s not in use then humidity and other environmental factors can damage the frame and components over time.
5)Keep your bike clean.
Keeping things clean can extend the life of a bicycle by quite a lot.
Make sure to wipe off any dirt or dust from your tires and other components before riding so it doesn’t wear down the metal over time.
Should I buy a new or used mountain bike if mine breaks down and needs repairs?
You should always buy a new mountain bike instead of a used one.
Buying a used bike means it’s going to be worn down and have parts that are going to need to be replaced.
The best option is to go to a local shop and pick out a brand-new one so you know the quality of the materials you are getting.
You can also buy a new bike online, with far less hustle.
This will give you a range of options because even if the type of bike you want is not available at your local store, you can easily have it shipped to you.
My final thoughts.
A mountain bike can last for a very long time if you put in the effort to maintain it and make repairs when necessary.
However, if you don’t take care of your bike then you can expect it to break down over time.
The best thing I would recommend is keeping parts maintained, using a repair kit for emergencies, and buying brand-new tires instead of used ones for safety reasons.
Mountain Bikes are great for everyone.