How to Store Bicycles Long Term
If you're into cycling, the idea of storing your bike long term might seem over the top. Why not keep your bike at home for leisure rides, commute to work, or for a workout?
However, long term bicycle storage is more useful than you may think. For one it would help protect your bike from weather conditions like snow or rain. Or you may have an old back that has sentimental value and is emotionally hard to get rid of. Or its something you need to be accessible for the weekend.
Whatever it is, it's important to store your bike in a storage unit to keep it safe.
The Problems of Improper Storage
Why prepare your bike for storage? Why not simply lock it away in a storage unit and call it a day? Quite of bit can happen actually. Neglecting to clean your bike before storage can let dirt and grime ruin the bike. Moisture can lead to rust, damaging the frame, chains, and other metal parts. And old, clotted oil can cause chains and other components to jam.
Inspecting Your Bike
Before we delve into the storage process, here's a piece of advice. If you're not well-versed in the intricacies of your bike and its components, especially if you're dealing with a high-end model, consider taking it to a bike shop for a thorough check-up. It might entail some expenses for parts and labor, but it's a worthwhile investment to ensure your ride is in tip-top shape before hibernation.
If you're a handy DIYer and feel confident inspecting and fixing your bike yourself, here are some steps to follow:
You might need to replace parts such as brake pads, brake lines, housings, tires, tubes, and the chain.
One critical step is ensuring there's no trapped water inside the frame. To achieve this, remove the seat and hang the bike upside down for around two hours. This allows any water to drain out, reducing the risk of rust.
Lubricate all parts that require it, including brake lines, the drive-train, seat posts, and bolts. Use WD-40 to lube the derailers and shifter lines. Don't forget to inflate the tires and ensure they stay firm.
Storing Your Bicycle
Once your bike is clean, tuned up, and lubricated, it's ready for storage. We strongly recommend opting for a climate-controlled storage unit, especially if you reside in an area with fluctuating weather conditions, from hot and humid summers to cold and dry winters.
Rubber components, such as your bike's wheels, can be sensitive to UV light and changes in humidity. Even though your bike won't be basking in sunlight inside the storage unit, it can still be affected by shifts in weather. Climate control maintains humidity levels between 30% and 50% and keeps the temperature within the range of 50 to 80 degrees, protecting your bike from these potential hazards.
If you're left with no choice but to rent a non-climate-controlled unit, we suggest removing the wheels and seat and storing them at home in a cool, dry place.
Preserving Your Wheels
One common issue with long-term bike storage is the development of flat spots on the wheels if the bike rests against the wall or on a kickstand. To prevent this, consider using bicycle wall hangers. Check with the facility management to ensure this is acceptable in your storage unit. Most facilities are open to this idea, but if not, you can explore other storage options. Wall hangers keep your bike off the ground, safeguarding both the wheels and the frame.
Need a Storage Unit For Your Bike?
Consider using 3821 McCann Road to Store your Bike this Winter. Our Storage Units are safe secure and will protect your bike from the elements.