8 Common Problems With New Bikes (All You Need To Know)

new bike problems

There’s nothing quite like that new bike feeling – but it can really suck when your new bike immediately starts facing problems.

Unfortunately, there are many different problems which new bike owners can face, ranging from minor to severe.

However, in this article we will delve into detail the top problems that people face with new bikes and how to overcome them. We will cover the following issues:

  1. Rust
  2. Jumping gears
  3. Punctures
  4. A rubbing break
  5. A snapped chain
  6. Broken cleats or pedals
  7. Vacuum leaks
  8. Power meters

1. Rust

Arguably one of the most common problems that new bike owners face is rusting. This is due to the fact that rusting can happen almost nowhere, and anyone who doesn’t wipe down their bike when it gets wet or keep it in a sheltered place is likely to face it – especially if they live in an area with high humidity.

In order to stop this common problem from occurring, you should take care of the bike as best as you can: always remember that preventative measures are better than having to rush to save an already rusted bike.

Still, if you do happen to leave your bike in a damp area for long enough for it to rust, all you will need to do is use a wire brush to remove any loose rust and then let it soak in Jenolite Rust Remover. 

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2. Jumping Gears

The problem with jumping gears comes from when you’ve ridden a new bike a few times and the cables stretch ever-so-slightly, resulting in the chain beginning to skip over the cassette. You may notice this issue if it suddenly takes longer to change gear. 

In order to fix this common problem, you should screw the barrel adjuster several times anti-clockwise and tighten the cable. 

3. Punctures

Another common problem with new bikes – and bikes in general – comes from punctures. Unlike a few of the other problems in this article, punctures can be fixed in just a few minutes. 

In order to fix a puncture, all you will need to do is open the brakes and then remove the wheel. Following that, take one side of the tyre off from the rim using a pair of tyre levers, and then take out the inner tube and replace it. Add some air, put the tyre back on the bike and then give it a full inflate. 

Alternatively, you could purchase a tubeless bike and not have to face problems like this!

4. A Rubbing Brake

Another annoying problem comes from rubbing brakes. Ideally, you should be able to adjust them on the road but sometimes this isn’t possible.

If that is the case, you will likely have to wait until you’ve stopped moving, especially if you’ve got disc or hydraulic brakes. 

In order to fix a rubbing brake, you should be able to loosen the breaks before tightening them back up, and if you hear a scraping or catching noise as the wheel spins, you should definitely check that your breaks are only a little tight – the alternative is that the wheel is bucked.

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5. Snapped Chain

Is there anything more annoying than a snapped chain?

In order to fix a snapped chain in a new bike, you will need a chain tool and some quick links. Then, you will have to spend some time threading the broken chain back on, moving the bike into the smallest chainring and sprocket. 

Then, once the broken section of the chain is hanging at the bottom, you will need to use the chain tool in order to push the river through the broken link. Fix it, join it together, and then pull the chain tight. Simple!

6. Broken Cleats or Pedals

Another problem which can be especially irritating to try to fix on the road is a broken cleat or pedal. However, it is important to pull over and stop cycling until the problem is fixed.

In order to stop this problem from occurring, you will need to look after the pedals and cleats as well as you can, replacing them as soon as they begin to wear down.

A big benefit of doing this is that by keeping them fresh, you can reduce the risk of knee or cartilage injuries.

7. Vacuum Leaks

For those who have motorized features on their bike, one of the most common problems is the fact that the carburetors can sometimes face a vacuum leak.

This problem derives from the fact that this piece of engine mixes the petrol and air together. This happens when extra air gets in and can be caused by the rubber seal drying out or degrading.

Whilst this is a problem which is often misdiagnosed, if you make sure to keep an eye out for erratic idling or a loss of power then you should be able to catch it early. 

8. Power Meters

There are many different problems which can stem from power meters, with the most common issues being caused simply by riders not understanding how they work and caring for them as they need to.

You will need to regularly keep the firmware updated on power meters, along with replacing required washers when necessary.

Power meters can be relatively expensive, so in order to stop any potential problems from arising, you should consider reading the instructions before you even set off with them for the first time.

Final Thoughts

To conclude, whilst new bikes can face a multitude of problems, with some basic knowledge and upkeep you should be able to keep the problems to a minimum. 

Keeping your bike in a dry and secure place, ensuring that the pedals are fresh, and potentially going for a tubeless bike are just some of the things that you can do to keep your bike working as best as it can for as long as it can.

Good bike upkeep is the secret to a long-lasting bike!



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John Muranko

John is Founder and Senior Bike Editor at ProBikeCorner. John is a bike and travel addict who has cycled through 17+ countries and doesn't really have any plans of stopping. He´s passionate about helping others by creating technical resources, in-depth reviews and more…

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