As Florida cyclists we are all very familiar with heat, sweat and humidity. But do you know what effect this can have on your bike?
Sweat and humidity leads to corrosion. And this can cause rust which will eventually lead to breakage or failure. This can not only rob your performance but can also cause an accident.
The trouble is that often you can't even see the problem unless the parts are inspected (which may require removing them). Here are two good examples of corrosion problems I ran into in our Naples store.
The picture on the left is under the aero-pad of an aerobar. The bolts are so corroded they are about to break, and can't be removed without destroying them further. If this cyclist was riding in the aero position and the bolt gave way he would have likely crashed. Triathlon bikes have the added problem of a sports drink spilling there.
The picture on the right is of a headset bearing that is corroded and affecting the steering of the bike. This bearing is not dissimilar to a bottom bracket bearing. Imagine how much extra drag (cost in wattage) a corroded bottom bracket bearing causes!
Shift and brake cables also can rust and corrode which effects the shifting and breaking properties.
The bottom line is that for safety and optimum performance, any Florida cyclist should have your bolts and bearings inspected by a pro mechanic every 6 months.
Be safe out there, I hope to see you on the road!