Exercise Bike Repair and Preventive Maintenance

You can do most any exercise bike repair yourself, and if you are interested in saving money, it’s usually the best way to go. It only takes a little preventive maintenance to keep the bike performing in top shape for many years to come.

Regular Cleaning and Inspection

You should inspect the bike weekly for lose bolts and keep them tightened (just don’t over tighten anything) since they will tend to work loose with regular use. Another good habit is to wipe the bike down after each use to remove perspiration. Most manufacturers recommend you take special care to clean the pulse grips (if applicable) to keep the heart rate sensors working properly.

To keep the bike clean, wipe it down after each use with a clean cloth to help prevent rust and corrosion. You don’t need to use any cleaning solution. You should also not keep the belt drive at a tight setting; take the tension back down to the lowest setting when you are finished.

Other tasks include checking all moving parts for anything loose, and inspect the drive system and the brakes for wear. Typically, these parts will eventually require replacement if you spend a lot of hours exercising on the bike.

Mechanical Problems

Most repairs are minor. The drive system gets the most wear and tear, and exercise bike repairs are easy to do, even if you have never done anything like it before. All it requires is an Allen wrench or Hex wrench.

If you have a bike with a belt drive, it won’t need maintenance, but inspect it periodically since these belts can wear out. If it looks frayed or it is starting to crack, it is time to replace it. If the resistance is too light or too high, check the tension cable.

If the chain is noisy, put a few drops of oil under the tension knob. While you are at it, you can also apply some oil to the brake springs. Consult your owner’s manual for adjustments to the brakes, as well as how to replace speed sensors.

Rattling from the handlebars can be a simple repair; just tighten the bolt again. Tightening the pedal crank assembly bolts is a similar solution, just be sure not to over tighten the bolt. If the assembly is wobbly and must be completely replaced, consult your owner’s manual for instructions.

Installing new cycling pedals will require some grease on the threads before installation to prevent corrosion inside the crank arms. Again, consult your owner’s manual or the exploded parts diagram for complete instructions.

Electronic Problems

Before you take apart a dead or malfunctioning console on an upright or recumbent bike, consult the owner’s manual for instructions. If your bike is under warranty, you may be required to contact a licensed technician or risk voiding the warranty if you attempt to fix the issue yourself. If you believe the malfunction is a simple problem on a plug-in bike, try unplugging the power cord, wait a minute, and plug it back in. Often this will reset it. There will be other troubleshooting instructions listed in your manual, and you will likely be asked to verify that the console wiring is secure and has not pulled loose.

Check the Warranty

Performing regularly scheduled maintenance will ensure that your bike operates in peak condition every time you use it. If you are unable to do an exercise bike repair, you can contact the manufacturer to locate a licensed technician in your area. On an inexpensive or lower end bike that is inoperable, you may have to take the bike in for a service call. For high-end bikes, such as those made by Star Trac, the in-home labor warranty runs for 3 years, and wear items are covered for 10 years. Read your bike’s warranty carefully which will detail the clean and preventive maintenance tasks that are your responsibility, and what items will be covered and serviced under the warranty.

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