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How To Repair A Squeaking Recumbent Bicycle

Last Updated on October 29, 2021 by JP

An effective recumbent bike leads to an effective workout. 

But, The issue of squeaking is a commonly occurring problem in exercise bikes.

If the squeaking noise does not get checked and fixed as soon as possible, it can result in a serious mechanical problem.

If you want to understand why your recumbent exercise bike is making that squeaking sound and how to repair it, take a read.

repair squeak recumbent bicycle

Why Is My Stationary Recumbent Bike Squeaking?

Due to the regular use of your stationary bike, it is likely to have some recurring mechanical issues. Fortunately, you can fix your recumbent bike without calling a repair service once you gain enough insight into the bike’s basic mechanisms.

Depending on the stationary bike, the cause of the squeaking can vary. For instance, not all exercise bikes use the same resistance mechanisms. 

Resistance mechanisms have a huge impact on the location and frequency of the knocking noise that can be produced by the stationary cycle. 

Have a look at Schwinn 270 recumbent bike resistance not working, if you are wondering about the Schwinn 270’s resistance mechanism in particular.

The next section will explain where the sounds originate from and how you can repair your stationary cycle.

What Causes The Squeaking Noise?

One of the main causes is improper use of the exercise bike. This includes placing the bike on a certain surface and riding the bike with incorrect form. You should place your bike on a carpeted surface or have a mat placed underneath the bike. 

It should be noted that some of the noise coming from the recumbent exercise bike can be normal due to the movement of its parts and friction. This depends entirely on the bike’s resistance system.

Air-based resistance bikes and direction tension resistance bikes tend to be noisier than a magnetic resistance bike. So, the sounds may just be a normal part of the bike’s operation. 

There are also mechanical causes that can include various parts of the bike. Some parts can be faulty and the problem can get worse if you do not carry out a standard maintenance procedure consistently.

In essence, the recumbent bike knocking noise is usually a result of misuse, mechanical problems, or lack of maintenance which leads to rust.

The section below will give a detailed explanation of those mechanical parts that can result in a squeaking bike. 

How Do I Fix the Squeaking Noise on My Recumbent Bicycle?

 Firstly, to remove the squeaking or knocking noise for your bike, you need to know where the squeaking noise is originating from. 

The sound can be coming from the following: jammed pedals, loose belts, brackets, or brake problems.

Secondly, you need to be aware of the fact that not all bikes are made equally. A bicycle that uses cable will require a different approach compared to a magnetic bicycle. Read Nordictrack recumbent bike repair, if you are specifically dealing with a bike from the Nordictrack series.

Thirdly, make certain that you have the right tools. Most recumbent bikes use universal tools that allow you to access the bike’s inner components. 

You will want to stick to manual tools and keep screws in a box close by.

Jammed Pedals

If you hear a knocking or clicking noise from the pedals, then there might be something wrong with the pedals.

To inspect the pedals, spin the pedals and see how the pedals align with each other when rotating.

Pedals that are jammed will not rotate smoothly and will require more force when you cycle the recumbent bicycle.

In most situations, pedals tend to jam due to the collection of mold, dust, and rust.

The squeaky noise can also occur if the bike is in an imbalanced position.

how to repair squeak recumbent bicyle

The Solution

In such situations, most recumbent bikes come with a pedal rebuild kit.

After inspecting and establishing that the noise is coming from the pedals, you need to remove the pedals. After removing the pedals, clean the pedals and clean the threads. You will then apply grease.

In the case of the pedals being jammed due to the gathering of mold, rust, and dust, you may want to check the manufacturer’s user manual with regards to cleaning. The manual will advise you as to how to clean the pedals and what lubricate product to use.

It is important to know that if you continue exercising on the bike, with the pedals being jammed, you can end up damaging the bike.

If you suspect that the recumbent exercise bike’s pedals need to be replaced, do the following: place one or two drops of the thread lockers onto the bolt. You will then need to seize the pedal wrench and rotate the pedals.

Rotate the pedals until you are sure that they are secured tightly to the stationary exercise bike.

If you are replacing the pedal on the right side, you have to rotate the pedals clockwise with your fingers. You rotate until you are certain that the bolt is fitting securely into the hole to perfection.

When dealing with a recumbent bike parts replacement, always check with the manufacturer that you have the correct bike parts.

A Loose Belt

Another widespread issue in stationary bikes is squeaking belts.

The squeaking noise is usually a result of unsecured, loose straps. Loose straps occur when great pressure is exerted while cycling on the bike.

The belt slips during the operation, once opened. This results in a squeaky noise.

The Solution

If you suspect that you are faced with the problem of a loose belt, there are two things that you can do.

You can either tighten the belt or replace it completely, to ensure it functions smoothly again.

When fixing a belt problem, you need to ensure that you are using the appropriate tools to disassemble the recumbent exercise cycle.

If the recumbent bike is under a warranty, you need to consider its terms and conditions. If the warranty is valid, you can take the recumbent bicycle to the manufacturer’s repair services.

A warranty might also permit you to request a substitute belt. After the belt has been replaced, you must ensure that the new belt is tight and solid, to avoid future slippage and squeaking noises.

Even so, regular cleaning, lubrication, and maintenance can aid the best in preventing the squeaky noise caused by a loose belt.

The Brackets

One of the biggest causes of knocking and squeaking sounds from a stationary recumbent bike is bracket problems.

When the noise arises from the bike’s brackets, then you will notice that the noise only occurs when you are cycling.

The noise tends to emanate from the bicycle’s top frames.

The Solution

If you notice that the noise only happens when you push the pedals down, you need to inspect and make certain that the brackets are well lubricated and tight.

You will need to acquire a specific tool in the case that you need to remove the bicycle’s side brackets to be repaired or replaced. The tools that you need depend mainly on the specific model of the bike.

For this reason, you have to ensure that you have the appropriate tools, according to the bike’s model, when removing the brackets. This will avoid any damage or injury.

The Brakes

If you notice the squeaking noise from the brakes, it is best to look at the condition of the brakes.

Without continuous maintenance, the brake pad’s fibers become dry, weary, and thin.

The squeaking noise will then emanate from the worn-out brakes’ pads.

The Solution

The only way to get rid of the squeaking noise arising from the brakes is to ensure that the brakes are well greased.

A silicone spray lubricant is recommended.

All you have to do is take the brakes off and saturate the brake pads with the lubricant.

You have to then ensure that you lubricate the pads regularly.

The subsequent section gives an easy guide on how to keep up with your bike’s maintenance routine.

How You Can Incorporate a General Maintenance Routine

You will notice that the implementation of a regular weekly or monthly maintenance routine can keep the squeaking noise at bay.

Even exercise bike manufacturers recommend users check and fix any existing knocking noises to prevent future bike damage.

In essence, general maintenance indicates continuous cleaning and greasing of the recumbent cycle.

What Should be My Weekly Maintenance Routine?

For a weekly maintenance check, you need to focus on the recumbent bike’s level of performance.

A knowledgeable rider will be able to assist you in noticing any issues with the exercise bike’s performance.

Firstly, test for loose play in the pedals to see whether the bottom brackets need to be tightened. You can just seize both pedals and move them sideways.

Secondly, inspect and calibrate the following: the tension levels, speed sensors, and heart rate sensors.

Thirdly, you will need to ensure that the following is secured: the seats, pedals, clamps, and crank arms.

It is also good to check that the recumbent bike pedal straps fit correctly. 

lube belt recumbent bike

What Should be My Monthly Maintenance Routine?

For monthly inspections, you need to comprehensively examine the recumbent bike’s frame and its main assembly parts.

You will need to direct your attention to the brake pads. Brake pads will need grease when there are problems with the resistance or if there is a strange sound coming from the brakes.

Other moving components will also require cleaning and lubrication.

What about Chain Maintenance?

Effective chain tension and lubrication are very important.

You can inspect the chain tension by standing on the pedals and moving back and forth.

Thankfully, belt-driven bicycles in particular are known for being created with the least amount of maintenance required. You will only need to clean the belt with a soft, dry cloth every once in a while. This ensures that the belt’s grooves do not become obstructed by dust.

The Takeaway

 An exercise bike is quite an investment and, like most mechanisms, it is not without its issues. It is expected that you will deal with tiny repairs here and there to maintain your bicycle’s longevity.

 That is why it is necessary to look at the bike’s manual and understand the basic components of the recumbent bike. If you lose your manual, do not fret. There might be one available online via the manufacturer’s website.

Have a good look at the exercise bike’s casing, then get to the bottom of the problem and restore it to its perfect working condition.

If you are unsure about the squeaking sound, it is advised to do a warranty check-up before trying to repair the bike completely by yourself.

How to Repair a Squeaking Recumbent Bicycle FAQs

What components need to be cleaned and what components need to be lubricated?

The following needs to be cleaned: handlebars, chrome, inner mechanical parts, flywheel, hub assembly, and turbo chain.

 The following needs to be lubricated: all moving components, bearings, and all pop-pin assemblies.

How do I clean my recumbent bike?

Wipe down the recumbent bike and its screen with a soft, dry cloth or disinfecting wipes after exercise without using water. This aids in removing germs and sweat.

 It is best to not use harsh liquids, soap, or petroleum-based products.

However, you can use a family unit cleanser with water at regular intervals.

For hygienic reasons, make sure to clean the recumbent bike seat pad as well. 

How do I lubricate my exercise bike?

Apply a little bit of lubricant spray oil in between the end of the pedal and the crank arm. Just give it a couple of turns to work the oil in. Then let it just rejuvenate the bearings before turning it again.

And that is all you need to do.

Did you find our blog helpful? Then feel free to have a look at other readings:

Recumbent Bike Reviews for 2021 – Best Recumbent Exercise Bikes
Recumbent Bike Physical Therapy
Folding Recumbent Exercise Bikes
Compact Recumbent Stationary Bike
Recumbent Bike Prices
Is A Recumbent Bike Good for Exercise
Recumbent Bike – Advantages and Disadvantages
Recumbent Bike: Muscles Worked
Where to Buy A Recumbent Bike
What is The Best Recumbent Bike for Home Use?


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