5 Disc Brake Maintenance Tips For Your Road Bike

Clock00:00, Monday 29th October 2018

Disc brakes on road bikes are becoming increasingly common and for good reason. They do however require some different maintenance methods compared to rim brakes. Let's look at 5 things you should do to take care of the disc brakes on your road bike.

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Don't brake! At least, not without a rotor in the calliper of the bike.
If you remove the wheel and do squeeze that brake lever by mistake, then don’t squeeze it again. You risk the pistons popping out of the calliper and that's a big old mess. But why? Well, the calliper self-adjusts the brake pads to the rotor and thinks that you still have a rotor in place, when you don’t. You need to reset the pads now, so grab something flat, a tyre lever is perfect for wedging between the pads and pushing them back. You could use a flathead screwdriver but you may score the pad so be careful if you try this. Then a few pulls on the brake lever and the pads will be back to their correct position.

Brake bleeding. With a traditional cabled setup, when the braking becomes poor, we often change the cables to bring the brakes back to life. But for a hydraulic setup, we bleed the system. This is done when, or if, your brakes start to feel squishy or spongy. The reason that your brakes have found themselves like this is that some air has found its way into the system which means the brake fluid isn't doing its usual great work as it's not able to compress fully. By removing the fluid with air bubbles in and replacing it with fresh air free fluid isn’t really troublesome, but does require patience and being a fairly competent mechanic.

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Photos: © Velo Collection (TDW) / Getty Images & © Bettiniphoto / http://www.bettiniphoto.net/

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