4. Check Chain Slack


We take our chains for granted most the time, but every 500-700 miles or so (check your owner’s manual for specific intervals) we should give our chains a little love. Neither a tight or loose chain is any good, nor are stuck or worn out links. At the very least, clean and lube your chain (use products like the SnapJack if you don’t have a way of getting the rear tire in the air), and if your chain does need adjustment, be sure to follow the factory recommendations for proper chain tension. While you’re at it, inspect the condition of your sprockets as well. Dull sprocket teeth can cause the chain to jump under acceleration, which is annoying at best and downright dangerous at worse. It’s always a good idea to change chains and sprockets at the same time.

If your bike has a belt drive, it’s a good idea to look those over, too. Even belts need to be replaced eventually. Look for fraying edges or loose strands as a sign that a replacement is imminent.