How To Quiet Noisy Brakes

Posted on Oct 15, 2013 in News | 0 comments

How To Quiet Noisy Brakes

Whether you’re commuting on city streets or racing down mountain passes, your brakes are one of the most important parts of your bicycle. If you can hear a lot of noise when you squeeze your levers, it probably means your braking power is being compromised. These simple fixes will hush your ride and help you get back to optimum stopping power.

What It Sounds Like: Sh-sh-sh-sh; A whooshing type noise when you feather the brakes.

The Culprit: That sound you hear is probably due to dirt and grime buildup. Do you ride often in wet or muddy conditions? If so, this will probably happen frequently. What you need to do is give your rims a solid scrub. Try using something abrasive, like Go-Jo hand soap or a fine emery cloth. Start at the valve and work your way around the rim, making sure to clean both sides. Problem still persists? Check the inside of your pads. Often, small bits of road dirt, rock, and glass can become embedded in your brake pads. Use a fine, pointy tool to dig those little guys out. If there’s too much stuck in there, or if your pads are very worn, it’s better to replace the entire pad.

What It Sounds Like: A loud SH!, once per wheel revolution.

The Culprit: If your wheel is rubbing regularly once per revolution, it probably needs to be trued.  This is a simple process of adjusting the tension on the spokes to bring a wheel back into line. You can open your brakes so it doesn’t rub. Just don’t forget you did that—it will decrease your braking power for the rest of the ride.

What It Sounds Like: A loud, ear piercing SQUUUEEEAL, as you lay down on the brakes.

The Culprit: The residue from some cleaners can form a layer on the surface of rims. Scrub ‘em down and try it again. Still squealing? It means that your brakes are vibrating as they hit the rim. Make sure they’re adequately tightened on. You should also “toe-in” your pads—this means you’ll arrange them so the front of the pad hits the rim before the back. If all else fails, try replacing the pads. Sometimes the pad compound isn’t perfect for the rim you have, and switching to another brand can make the difference.

Whatever you do, do NOT lubricate your rims or pads! It won’t fix the problem, and it will eliminate your braking power completely.


Related Products

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

9 + three =

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>