How to lubricate the brakes on a bicycle

Preventing Squeaky Bicycle Brakes

First, you need to thoroughly wipe all the elements of the brake system. Secondly, it is necessary to grind the brakes, and for this it is necessary to accelerate the bike (to maximum speed) and brake sharply. In this case, particles are distributed over the disc or rim (depending on the type of brake system installed). But it should be borne in mind that such lapping negatively affects the long-term operation of a bicycle tire, therefore, it is advisable to carry out such procedures on a dirt road.

And thirdly, the cyclist must monitor the treatment of his vehicle with various chemical elements. For example, experts recommend lubricating a bicycle chain with liquid oil, but it is better to refuse a spray (aerosol) in this case. drops of the agent will fall on the rear brake rim or disc and extraneous sounds during braking will be provided.

Note: it is highly advisable to clean the rim or brake disc with a cloth from dirt after each trip. this is also the prevention of a bicycle squeak when braking.

Chainwheel for chain lubrication

Innovations are not always necessary and useful. It is not so difficult to do without many. Perhaps, about the chain hoist. a machine designed to facilitate the maintenance of the chain, many who do not see the difficulties in removing and cleaning the chain in the classical way, think the same.


lubricate, brakes, bicycle

But, if the procedure is not difficult for them, then for beginners and girls, it is a serious problem. But it is also impossible not to take care of this part.

For them, a chain-link is a way out. Devices are available in several types. They differ in reliability, equipment and cost.

The products of the following companies are considered to be budget options: Birzman, Bike Hand, Barbieri. Cars from these manufacturers are completed with 3 wheels and a capacity. There are more components, and the machine is more convenient if the manufacturer is Kettenmax, but the price is much higher. A specific person chooses equipment according to financial capabilities.

Chain lubrication intervals

Experts are divided on this issue. But, everyone agrees with some decisions:

  • if it becomes difficult to go for a walk, you need to lubricate the chain;
  • if the ride lasted more than three hours. check this part, you may need to lubricate it;
  • if there are extraneous sounds, then the chain is dry.

Analyzing everything, we understand that it is right, every time, after leaving 100 km behind, to clean and lubricate the most important part of the bike.

What to use to lubricate your bike

There are a huge number of oils and lubricants on the market suitable for this purpose:

  • liquid oils belong to the category intended for lubricating chains of any type, which ensures their reliable operation;
  • two-component aerosols are used to lubricate: switches, cables, threads. When spraying aerosols, the oils contained in their composition penetrate into hard-to-reach places, providing lubrication of parts that cannot be processed in any other way. Some aerosols contain kerosene, so they are an effective assistant for separating worn parts (LM47, LM40);
  • plastic lubricants are used if you need to lubricate or seal any kind of connections. Some contain calcium. They are used as a lubricant for joints and assemblies. This type of bicycle lubricant includes: Unitol, Solidol, etc. Their advantages include the ability to stay on the elements for a long time, ensuring their efficient operation. Another type of bicycle grease is lithium grease: Fiol, Litol. 24, etc.
  • chassis elements retain their characteristics for a long time.

What kind of lubricant is used for bearings

For them, it is chosen so as to ensure uninterrupted operation for a long time. One can count as such a lithium one, capable of serving a year without replacement. Before application, the bearings are thoroughly washed with kerosene, allowed to dry, then the lubricant is placed in the separator. It holds the bearing balls together. It is allowed to apply it directly into the cup, then squeezing the balls.

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About the types of lubricants

Greases with an increased m of any element. such as lithium or calcium.

Lithium greased. such as Litol-24, it is good to lubricate the bearing axles, the carriage. It is lithium that gives the lubricant a specific slip, and it exhibits antifriction properties. In addition, lubricants with the addition of lithium do not thicken in frost up to 50 degrees and do not liquefy even at midday temperature in the desert, since they are capable of not changing their properties when heated to 150 degrees. The negative side is a fairly high water solubility, therefore, the lubrication points must be sealed with sealed anthers. In addition, this lubricant is not recommended to be applied to aluminum surfaces.

Calcium greases are greases and work well for a long time. An example of such a lubricant is Uniol. Unlike lithium, they have high adhesion, or adhesion to the surface, and hold for a long time. In addition, they help to resist corrosion in wet conditions. These lubricants are yellow or greenish. It is very important that they do not react with aluminum, unlike lithium greases. Therefore, their price is high and they can be used to lubricate expensive bikes.

Aerosols are a special type of lubricant. which can contain several components, for example Teflon. Their advantage is the ability to penetrate into hidden cavities and hard-to-reach places, including due to adhesion and surface tension. Their predecessor is kerosene, which has a truly unmatched enveloping ability, even able to get out of the vessel. With the help of such lubricants, it is possible to process cables, all types of threads, especially when loosening heavy and stuck connections. Examples of such lubricants are LM 40, LM 47 and others.

Perhaps the most famous quick-acting aerosol lubricant is the well-known WD-40. Among other things, it creates a hydrophobic layer and displaces water.

Lubricants with m silicone. Easy to apply, dust and water repellent.

Wax lubricants: on the chain, for example, the coating can last for several months under dry conditions. But the wax is subsequently capable of falling off itself in the form of scales and flakes. If the bike is operated in water, mud, fords are crossed or riding occurs in spring or autumn, then you need to choose another lubricant, because the wax is not fluid and cannot effectively penetrate into the chain connections.

How to Lubricate Brake and Shift Cables

A bicycle is not an easy machine. Before you lubricate your bike, you need to know that, in addition to the places for lubrication, there are areas where lubrication is completely undesirable. These include wheel tires (accidental ingress of grease on large areas can lead to skidding and the impossibility of emergency braking), rims (in the case of using tick-type brakes), as well as brake discs and pads. In addition, if oil gets on the rubber chamber, it can begin to corrode the rubber, which will lead to its rupture for a considerable length.

Front fork damping system

It is the presence of a shock absorber that allows the biker not to pay attention to obstacles and makes the bike passable. A good shock absorber resists the reaction of the support to the front wheel in a timely manner, so the fork must be kept in good condition.

Normally, it is necessary to lubricate the fork legs after 150-200 kilometers, after 700 km (on average) the oil seals are disassembled and lubricated, and annually or after a run of 3-4 thousand km. the oil in the shock absorber is completely replaced.

It is better to show all the care of the fork in the video than to describe it in detail in text. For example, here you can see all the preventive maintenance operations for the front fork and shock absorbers:

Mount types

Before adjusting, the first thing to do is to make sure that the rim brakes are indeed V-brakes. Actually, there are three types of rim mounts:

  • V-Brake. separate V-shaped levers, connected by a cable, which is held by a leash (jacket);
  • cantilever. with an additional central mount, from which the cable goes separately to each side. In fact, these are the predecessors of the V-Brake, featuring a more complex mechanism, but more clearance, which is beneficial for dirty riding;
  • caliper brakes. U-shaped mount in which two levers are connected and bite into the rim. These models are the hardest to weaken.

Cantilever brakes

Each type is understood differently, but the overwhelming majority will only have to deal with the first type.

Setting v brake rim brakes

Today, mountain bikes are widely used with the v-brake system, so we will use this example to show you how to adjust the brakes of a bicycle in the case of a rim brake. Setting up other rim brakes is done in the same way. The only difference is that the bolts and screws that need to be twisted may be in other places. And the approach is the same (even in the case of disc brakes).

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So, the basic rule is that the pads should be parallel to the rim. The clearance between the shoe and the rim should be 1 mm. And both pads must be symmetrical.

Replacing rim brakes

The first thing to start with is removing the nuts and washers. After that, the old pads are separated from the main braking device. New pads are put in place of the old ones. In this case, they need to be directed to the rim. To avoid squeaks while riding, make sure that the pads are in full contact with the rim.

System setup principles

The rim brakes must be properly applied to the wheel rim. This is an important part of their job. If necessary, you can adjust the shoe fastening system. The pads are secured with a few nuts, washers and rubber gaskets. If you need to correct something, then first of all, the nuts are loosened. The pads can now be moved slightly. They should be strictly parallel to the wheel rim and not touch the tires. In most cases, the distance between them should be at least 1 mm.

But there are some peculiarities here too. If you use soft pads on your bike, they are slightly deformed during operation. Therefore, they should not be located parallel to the rim, but in such a way that their front is literally 1 mm closer than the back. This can be achieved with a 1mm to 1.5mm thin shim which is placed at the back of the pads. If rigid ones are used, then they are attached parallel to the wheel rim.

After setting, you need to press the handle and tighten the nuts

In this case, you need to pay attention to the fact that the entire structure of the brakes does not budge. In addition, you can adjust the levers

When correctly adjusted, they clamp and diverge synchronously. If this does not happen, you need to pay attention to the adjusting screws that are located at the very base of the levers. In case of excessive deflection, the screw is unscrewed. If the deviation is insufficient, it twists.

Device and varieties

The device of rim brakes for a bicycle is technically simple and their design consists of brake pads, several levers, cables and a handle. Many beginner riders use them as their primary brake. They are still popular and used in several disciplines. In addition, they are quite inexpensive.

There are several types of these systems:

  • V-Brake systems;
  • Tick-borne;
  • Cantilever;
  • Hydraulic.

The most popular are V-shaped. In another way, they are called vector. They got their name thanks to the V-shaped fastening method. The cable from the handles goes from the side to one of the levers and connects them. The levers are attached to the bike frame, in a specially designated place for them. If there are none, then removable mounts are installed, the so-called adapters. This system provides the best braking.

Tick-borne brakes are much less common. Mainly used on road bikes. Based on their design, they got a similar nickname. The levers are in the form of pincers. They are lightweight. Have less strength due to unreliable fastening.

techlife: How to lubricate a bicycle and adjust the brakes

Cantilevers were very common before the advent of V-shaped systems. This species is the predecessor of the former. But due to the heavier settings, they have become much less popular and practically not used. Although, if you turn to the master and make a professional setup of the device, then in terms of efficiency they will not be inferior to the first.

The hydraulic type of brakes differs from others in that a special fluid is used here. When you press the handles, the hydraulic line is activated, which acts on the levers. Braking begins. In principle, everything is the same as in other systems. But, as mentioned earlier, liquid or oil is used here.


Setting up disc brakes on a bicycle is not a complicated process. Now see for yourself. Let’s find out how to set up disc brakes on a bicycle yourself without asking for professional help:

  • After fixing the wheel, the caliper should be centered in relation to the rotor by picking up and installing washers of various thicknesses between the mountings on the frame and the caliper, which is included in the kit.
  • The position of the caliper will vary depending on how tight the bolts are. Accordingly, the thickness and number of washers will need to be selected to a fraction of a millimeter.
  • In the case when the rotor is in contact with both pads and friction occurs, the pads must be diluted. To do this, slightly unscrew the special hexagon on the caliper, while the brakes will start to work later.
  • If you want to achieve a shorter brake lever travel, the hex must be screwed in. This may be due to an uneven brake disc that will need to be aligned.
  • During the robot, do not turn the bike over to avoid air entering the system. Also, do not press the handle if there is no oil in the system, and the rotor does not stand between the brake pads, otherwise they will shrink, after which you will have to remove the caliper and open the brake pads with a screwdriver.
  • When all operations are completed, tighten all the bolts again. When checking the robot, we carefully monitor that the brake disc does not warp or shift when pressing the brake lever.
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The main features of disc brakes:

Adjust disc brakes as follows:

  • check whether the cable responsible for the operation of the disc brake is in place, because sometimes it may be out of place and this is the reason for a difficult ride;
  • see if the wheel is correctly placed in the frame itself;
  • tighten all the bolts securing the brake to the rear or front fork;
  • check the tightening of the screws on the wheel hub;
  • set up movable and static pads;
  • we loosen the bolts holding the brake machine with pads;
  • squeeze the brake handle (if you don’t have someone to help, then fix the handle on the handlebars with a rope);
  • after that, the pads should fit under the disc;
  • tighten the screws.

Adjusting and adjusting rim brakes v brake on a bicycle.

In the overwhelming majority of cases, v brake is installed on budget bicycles, walking and children’s bicycles. These are rim brakes with acceptable power and modulation. no wheel locking occurs. Before starting work, you must provide yourself with the following tools: a 5 mm and 3 mm hexagon, a screwdriver, and pliers.

  • unfasten the brakes themselves;
  • the main requirement is to put the wheel in a level position;
  • return everything to its original position;
  • tighten the cable with a hexagon and pliers;
  • if the handle stroke is large, then it is required to tighten the cable even more and strengthen the brakes themselves;
  • check the speed of the wheel. the course must be free. It happens when thorns are heard, then in this case it is worth adjusting the spokes themselves;
  • if one brake surface v brake is closer to the rim than the other, take a screwdriver and release or tighten the forcing shoe screws.

Above, brief instructions were presented for those who like to consolidate their knowledge not only with the help of video, but also in text format. Bicycle brakes, types, settings. are present in this article. Each brake system is accompanied by an introductory instruction, especially complex types. the hydraulic version. For them, there are restrictions in the selection of fluid and if you do not follow the advice, then neglect and pouring anything in will lead to injury and nervous stress. If you do not want to visit a traumatologist, follow the rules. Any type of brake will wear out over time and must be replaced. Practice shows that disk modifications are less vulnerable and can last for a long time. If they are incorrectly adjusted, the clamping index between the front and rear brakes will be different. Some will say that the reason is in the length of the cable, since the front part is half the length of the back. If the cable is not completely closed, then try to lubricate it. The fact is that inside the rubber hose there is a steel tube, which is responsible for the smooth and free sliding of the cable. Over time, it rusts, and this leads to ruptures and unweaving, and in order to avoid such a nuance, it is advisable to apply a few drops of machine oil or grease to it.