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These are the technical reviews that you should do to the suspensions of your mountain bike

These are the technical reviews that you should do to the suspensions of your mountain bike

The suspensions are key components of a mountain bike. Having clean suspensions with their well -lubricated internal mechanisms is an extra advantage of performance, comfort and bicycle management in the face of obstacles, descents, jumps and other common elements of a Mountain Bike route. In addition, it prevents accidents due to mechanical wear and helps us enjoy our exits on marches and routes much. That is why both the fork and the shock absorber - in the case that you have a double suspension bicycle - must be reviewed periodically. There are three levels of review and technical inspection that you must make to the suspensions of your mountain bike. The first level can be done by yourself, with a rapid check of the status of the pieces and adjustments (bars, bottles, dials, blocking, sag, etc.) before and after each output. The second type of review implies cleaning and change of oil and seals, for which it is best to take it to a specialized workshop. The third level of review implies a general maintenance of the less accessible and sensitive parties in the authorized technical service of the manufacturer. Do not worry, in this article we want to explain what each review consists of, what are the most frequent problems that you can find and, especially, how long or kilometers of use you must take the bicycle to perform the maintenance.

Most frequent breakdowns of suspensions

MTB suspension fork Do not comply with the fork and shock absorbers of your Mountain Bike can lead to the appearance of problems and breakdowns in both elements. Its repair cost could exceed in some cases the review itself. These are some of the most frequent breakdowns and incidents:

Pressure losses

In the air forks - the most used currently used - the loss of constant pressure, even having recently inflated it, is one of the symptoms that the suspension needs a review. You will have to change toric seals or joints and oil substitution.

Blocking

Another breakdowns that usually appear for not performing maintenance when it touches is the breakage of the blockade. The internal circuit oil loses properties over time and with the dirt that enters from the outside (dust, mud, etc.), which causes the washers or the piston of the blockade to be damaged. This means that the mechanism is not closed to harden the suspension. In other words: it does not block how it touches in each of the positions. If this happens to you, you must take the bicycle to a specialized technical workshop or service to repair it.

Oil leak

Another problem that many bikers have faced are suspension oil losses. The liquid may appear in the fork or body of the shock absorber due to the wear of the seals. It can also be lost through compression or rebound dials. In the first case it will be enough with a change of seals or oil, but in the second the internal oil circuit or cartridge may be damaged, so it will require a more expensive complete review.

When and where to do the reviews?

Fox rear shock absorber To avoid the appearance of these faults, which in some cases can be quite expensive, you have to do periodic maintenance of your suspensions. As we have mentioned above, maintenance includes three levels, attending to the complexity and cost of the review.

Visual review (before and after each output)

You can do it yourself before and after each exit with your bicycle. Clean with a humid cloth both suspensions and then check the state of bars (upper part that is compressed) and bottles (thicker lower bars) of the fork, as well as the shock absorber. Always keep the withdrawal free of dust and mud, check the pressure, the valve status to introduce the air and that the dials turn well. Also Calibrates the SAG o Pre -collapse, compression and rebound.

Basic review (every 50 hours of use)

It is a preventive maintenance whose term can be extended or shorten depending on the frequency of bicycle use. As a general rule, and to prevent breakdowns, from Tuvalum we recommend this review every 50 hours of use or every 3 months, what happens before. It is an internal cleaning, oil change and sewer replacement. You can choose make this review at home and thus save you the cost of the labor of a technical service. The change of seals and oil is not very complicated if you are good for mechanics. This Fox video about the basic maintenance of the Fox 32 fork can guide you: https://youtu.be/R7ZN8-BJMC0

Complete or general review (every 150 hours of use)

This is the complete maintenance of the suspension and includes both internal cleaning, change of seals and oil and the disassembly and review of the hydraulic circuit or air chambers. In Tuvalum we recommend doing this review every 150 hours of use or once a year, what happens before. This maintenance is more complex and expensive, so we advise to take the suspension to an authorized technical service of the brand.

How much does a review of Mountain Bike suspensions cost?

Both the basic and general review of the suspensions is expensive, although the disbursement is considered more an investment than an expense. Having the suspensions ready at all times will improve the behavior of the bicycle at each output and avoid more expensive breakdowns than the maintenance itself. The price of each review will vary depending on the brand of the suspensions and the cost of the workforce of the authorized technical workshop. In general and to guide you if you have never made a fork or shock absorber, the change of seals and oil ranges between 50 and 100 euros, while the complete review exceeds 100 euros. Bicimax, official Fox distributor in Spain and Portugal, has published on its website a price list of its reviews for its fork and shock absorber models. It can also serve as guidance for other brands, since rates are similar in all of them.

Recommended brand review deadlines: Fox, Rockshox and Sr Sustour

Each suspension brand has its own maintenance terms, which also vary depending on the type of suspension (fork or rear shock), model and seniority. Focusing on the most important, Fox is the least maintenance per year. In general, although the deadline will depend on the model or use, a complete review must be made every 125 hours of use or 1 year, what happens before. On the other hand, Rockshox shortens the deadlines at 100 hours for its suspensions prior to 2016, but increases to 200 hours for its generations from 2018 onwards. In addition, it recommends making a change of oil and preventive seals of all of them every 50 h. Other brands with a lot of presence in the market, such as SR Sustour, recommends complete maintenance in the technical service every 100 hours of use or one year, which previously happens. In the case of Cannondale and its Lefty monobrazo fork, a review must be made every 100 hours of use or one year (change of seals and cartridge check) and a more complete one every 200 hours or 2 years. The latter includes change of seals, maintenance of the cartridge and reconstruction and lubrication of the telescope.
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