Top 5 Tips To Keep Your Bicycle Rust Free When Parked Outdoors

Updated On: 10 September 2021 Dheeraj Nair

Is your bicycle kept outdoors for more than a week and hence, you are worried that it might get rust? Do not worry as we have put together 5 tips to keep your bicycle rust free!

Bicycle storage has been a problem that most cycling enthusiasts face around the globe. Unfortunately, for many of us, storing our precious bicycles inside a garage or closed space is not an option. So, open space or outdoors is the only place where we can park them. However, keeping bicycles exposed to many elements does not come without consequences. Learn what happens to your bicycle when left outside and the tips to overcome its effects.

It must be noted that keeping your bicycle outside for probably a day or two would not cause any damage to it, however, placing them locked outside for more than a week or prolonged period could invite problems such as corrosion from rain, humidity and intense sunshine. Hence, it is necessary to take few steps to maintain your bicycle and keep it healthy for better durability and performance.

Here are few problems which can occur by keeping your bicycle for a prolonged period outdoors without a roof over it to protect from exposure:

Rusting of steel frame:

Bicycle that is not rust free

Rain and humidity are not your bicycle's best friends as they can build up rust. To make matter worse, if your bicycle frame is constructed from steel, the probability of it rusting from exposure to rain, humidity and intense sunshine is higher when compared to other materials. It must be noted that even if the external components of a frame seem to look fine, the insides could get affected by rust, therefore, compromising the structural integrity.

Rusting of Chain:

Bicycle that has a rusty chain

The chain of expensive bicycles rusts slower when compared with the normal ones. This is because high-end bicycles come equipped with stainless steel chains that are prone to rust slower. However, in the case of lower-end bicycles, the metal chain starts to rust quickly when exposed to rain and such.

Also Read: Check Out The Top 5 Cycling Trends Of India In 2021

Seals:

replacement seal of a bicycle

Older bicycles come with seals inside the components to protect them from rainwater that could seep in. As time passes, these seals lose their potential and become weak due to wearing. Thus, it could cause the headset, wheel hubs and other drivetrain components like the shifters and rear derailleurs to get prone to rust.

Rusting of bolts:

image of a rusting stem bolt

Bolts of your bicycle such as stem bolts are usually made from metal even though other components of your bicycle come built with different materials. Stem bolts are highly prone to rust if left exposed to rain and intense sunshine. Once they rust, removing a part off your bicycle would become an ordeal if in case you need to replace them.

Now that we have discussed the issues that could arise from leaving your bicycle exposed, let us discuss what could be done to prevent the aforementioned aspects from happening. Here are few tips to keep your bicycle rust-free:

Buy a tarpaulin/ waterproof cover: As the saying goes, "something is better than nothing," it would be a good idea to place a roof over your bicycle by at least covering it with a sheet or tarpaulin to protect it from external factors that cause rust, like rain and intense sunlight. However, fully wrapping the bicycle could cause moisture to settle in, so avoid doing it.

Keep an eye on the seals: As mentioned earlier, a seal protects the components of your bicycle from rainwater seeping in that can potentially cause rust and damage. Hence, it is recommended to replace the seals every five years if the bicycle is placed outdoors where it is exposed to external factors like rain, dust and intense sunlight.

Lubricate and grease: The best way to keep the rust away from your bicycle is by greasing the parts like bolts and cables that commonly oxidize and seize. Also, lubricating the chain every month can help keep them away from rusting.

Also Read: Here Are Ideas To Improve Cycling Infrastructure In India

Rust removal: If you see rust building up on the frame, wheels and other components of your bicycle, immediately remove them by using WD-40 and other rust removal liquids. It is also recommended to use tin foil to scrape the rust off without damaging the components.

Invest in a makeshift shed: It is the perfect way to keep your bicycle in tip-top condition as a makeshift shed can protect your bicycle from all the harmful external elements that could potentially cause rusting of components.

What do you have to say regarding these few tips to keep your bicycle rust-free after keeping it outdoors? Please tell us your thoughts in the comment section below. Also, join our 91Wheels Telegram and 91Wheels Whatsapp group to know more about vehicles, conduct discussions on your favourite ride and much more!

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