Skip to Main Content

How & When To Service or Tune Your Mountain Bike

So you’ve gone and spent a pretty penny on an absolute beaut of a mountain bike, eh? Well now that you’ve got a few epic rides under your belt, you’ll probably want to start protecting your investment and keep ‘er rolling like new for as long as possible.
With these preventative service measures, you can prolong the life of your bike and keep the good times rollin':
Every Ride
1. Tire pressureEnsure tires are inflated to desired pressure. Hand squeeze or measure with gauge.
2. Hub integrity and wheel trueness.Move wheel side to side while holding the seat tube or fork; any play may indicate a loose bolt or compromised hub, this should be addressed before riding. Spin wheel and check for trueness and brake drag.
3. Lube and wipe down chain.Lube 1x per every 2-3 hours of riding and make sure to wipe off any excess oil.
4. Check thru-axles and quick release tension.Ensure that they haven’t rattled loose or come undone.
5. Wipe/rinse off excess dirt and mud after each ride.Dirt and mud that's left caked on the components can absorb grease and lubricants, causing them to dry out faster; we encourage wiping dirt/mud off instead of washing your bike. If extremely muddy, use a low water pressure setting and bike-friendly soap.
Every 3-5 Rides1. Check brake pads.If you do a lot of DH riding in wet conditions, you will want to check the status of your pads more often. Looking through the caliper with a white background helps see pad life.
2. Check shock/fork air pressure.Like tires, air shocks slowly lose pressure over time.
3. Check for chain wear or slack.A stretched out chain causes wear on your cassette, cog teeth & front chainring - replace chain if necessary.
4. Check bolt tensions.Loose parts create problems fast; if your bike feels funny or is making mysterious noises, stop and figure out why, it's usually something that's worked itself loose.
Every 3-6 Months1. Service fork lowers.Change out seals and fork oil. (See fork manufacturer manual for more specific service intervals.) For help, see our How to Service Fox & RockShox Forks guide.
2. Bleed hydraulic brakes.Flush if fluid appears darker than normal. For more info, consult our guides: How to Bleed SRAM Hydraulic Brakes / How to Bleed Shimano Hydraulic Brakes
3. Thouroughly clean drivetrain.Includes chain, cassette, derailleur pulleys, and chainrings.
4. Check tubeless tire fluid sealant.Verify that no cuts or wear are causing fluid to leak out; add more sealant if low.
5. Check tire tread & sidewall integrity.Low tread and/or cracking sidewalls will warrant new tires (sidewalls should be checked more frequently, especially before longer rides).
Every 6 Months-1 Year1. Service rear shock.Most air sleeve maintenance can be done in-house; internal damper service only needs to be done if not functioning properly or if the shock is making a "weezing," "klunking" or "slurping" sound.
2. Service frame.Fully disassemble and clean all linkages, headset and bottom-bracket; replace bearings as needed and re-grease all mating surfaces upon reassembly.
Keep in mind that these aren’t hard and fast intervals but rather general guideline recommendations for the average rider. If you get out riding more often than once or twice a week, ride particularly gnarly trails, and/or live in an area with more a more taxing climate, you’d benefit from performing these services more frequently. 

If you have any further questions or concerns, call or swing by your local evo service shop where our experts can aid you in sorting out your two-wheeled woes.

Need a tune up? Bring your bike in for maintenance at any of our flagship locations for assistance:

Learn More With Our Other Bike Guides:

Learn About our Favorite Bike Gear:

This is evo. We are a ski, snowboard, wake, skate, bike, surf, camp, and clothing online retailer with physical stores in SeattlePortlandDenver, Salt Lake City, Whistler, and Snoqualmie Pass. Our goal is to provide you with great information to make both your purchase and upkeep easy.

evo also likes to travel to remote places across the globe in search of world-class powder turns, epic waves, or legendary mountain biking locations through evoTrip Adventure Travel Trips. Or, if you prefer to travel on your own, check out our ski & snowboard resort travel guides and mountain bike trail guides.


Still have questions? Please call our customer care team at 1.866.386.1590 during Customer Care Hours. They can help you find the right setup to fit your needs.