Easy Peasy Fixing Bike Brakes

Let's Talk about brake adjustments there are a  number of different reasons why your brakes need to help are caused by either mechanical failures or they just need to be adjusted from use. The good news is that anyone can do it. It really is simple. 

Thank you bike shop for trying to scam me. That's how I see it. I took a bunch of bikes in to have the tires done with puncture proofing. I live in an area with a lot of thorns.  I paid 70 bucks a bike plus tax to have the tires fixed times four bikes..Yikes. While I was there they tried selling me on electric bikes, I'm sold even though I can't afford one. I really want one which is exacttly why I didnt do the test drive they were pushing. Credit? No, thank you.

I bring the bikes in and right away they start looking them over. The brakes are kind of squishy on the beach cruiser, that will be another 70 for a tune-up. This one needs the derailer adjusted, looks like a tune-up is needed here too.  They wanted me to pay for 3 tune-ups at 70 bucks a pop on top of what I was already paying. Hell no. I said the brakes are fine. I'll figure out the derailer and that bike is brand new, never even ridden, your kidding, right?

Nope, they weren't. But I didn't budge. So I took my bikes home and here's what I learned.

Common Issues and How to Fix your Bike brakes

1)The brakes themselves could be rubbing on the tire or dragging on the rim

How to fix Rubbing Brake Pads

If One pad is rubbing on the rim and the other pad is not touching, simply pull outward on the rubbing pad to realign it. Some times this is all it takes.

Fix V Brakes

screw on v bike brake

 

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The next step will be to adjust the small screw on the caliper on both sides. You will want to tighten one side and loosen the other. I would start with a half a turn at a time and check to see how the adjustment worked. The picture about is what the small screw on the side looks like. The video below will walk you through it.

Linear Brakes Rubbing one One side

  1. Check that the brake pad is lined up with the rim of the wheel.
    1. Squeeze the brake lever and check to see if the pad is lined up on both side hitting just the wheel and not the tire.

Adjust linear brake pads

How to tell if your brake pads are worn out

Maybe They just need maintenance and not replace. Are they completely worn out, or just worn out unevenly? If they are just uneven we can fix that without having to replace them yet and get some more life out of the pad. Do they have a worn uneven side like in the picture?

Are you looking for a new bike: https://www.thesmartconsumer.com/best-road-bikes-under-500/
uneven brake pad

 

How to fix this and restore uneven break pads

Using a file or a bench grinder or even rough sandpaper if it's not bad. Rub away the uneven surface (the high spots) to make the pad the same size and flat. Make sure to reveal fresh rubber across the whole pad to improve gripping and braking performance. More bikes to check out https://www.thesmartconsumer.com/best-mountain-bike-under-500/

 

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Brake pads can be replaced at little cost, but by doing a little sanding you could save a few bucks.

 

How do I Know When my Brake Pads Need Replacing?

For rim brake pads (v-brake, cantilever, road), the experts say to replace them when the grooves are worn away. Does it mean you have, no that's up to you. New pads generally have grooves and when you have worn them down to the end you know you're going to need to replace it soon. Heres a link to Amazon that can get you brake pads fast

brake pad groove

see the groove

Changing brake pads on a bike

When and How to Replace changing Shimano brake pads

Find The Pads Here on Amazon 

VPAD Brake Replacement Instructions

Find the pads here 

Hope this post and list of video resources helped. It saved me a ton of money . My only other recommendation is to get your self a good bike pump. It really makes a difference. Heres the ones I like https://www.thesmartconsumer.com/best-bike-pump