Do the ABC Quick Check Before You Ride Your Bike
By Mark Wyatt, Executive Director
Iowa Bicycle Coalition
Checking your bicycle before you ride is the most important step for a safe and enjoyable bike ride. The Iowa Bicycle Coalition recommends you do an ABC Quick Check each time you ride.
A is for Air
Be sure your tires are inflated to the proper level.
The most accurate way to measure tire inflation is using a tire pump with a gauge. Each tire has a inflation level stamped on the sidewall. You can also use your fingers if you don’t have a pump available. If you can make a dent in the tire by pinching the tire, you need to add air.
B is for Brakes
Functioning brakes will save your life. Your brakes should be able to stop your bicycle before you are involved in a crash. To test your brakes, squeeze the brake lever. If the lever touches the handlebars it needs adjusted. Sometimes, there is an adjuster barrel on the brake. You can also visit your local bike store for service.
C is for Chain
Make sure your pedals turn freely and move the rear wheel. If your chain or pedals are loose, be sure to have them serviced before riding.
Quick is for Quick Release. Many bicycles are equipped with a quick release axel. If not tightened, your wheel could fall out causing a certain crash. Make sure the quick release is locked before riding.
Check is for everything else. Make sure there are no loose parts or things that can get caught in the chain or spokes.
The ABC Quick Check is the first step to make sure your bike ride is safe and enjoyable. Visit the Iowa Bicycle Coalition website for more information on bicycle safety.
The Iowa Bicycle Coalition is a state-wide bicycle advocacy organization with 1,150 members and over 5,000 partners through affiliate organizations throughout Iowa. The Iowa Bicycle Coalition builds partnerships, educates Iowans, and helps to establish safe and enjoyable bicycle transportation and recreation networks throughout Iowa.