/ Why is my bike creaking?
Any ideas what it could be? It's an ally frame BTW.
That's a different sound, more like a popping. I know it well :-)
When mine did that, it was a crack in the frame.
but find its usualy the pedals or the seatpost that creaks.
Need a bit more info:
Is the creaking sound always at a certain point in the rotation of the pedal?
Does the noise occur just when you are sat down and pedalling or also when you are out of the saddle?
Does the sound occur when you use a different set of pedals?
exactly the questions i was going to ask as it will pretty much give a diagnoses know the answers to those questions
Mine has been creaking when I pedal hard. Turns out it is a loose chain ring nut causing the chain rings to flex. Get the allen keys out and go around the entire bike checking everthing is tight
> Need a bit more info:
> Is the creaking sound always at a certain point in the rotation of the pedal?
> Does the noise occur just when you are sat down and pedalling or also when you are out of the saddle?
> Does the sound occur when you use a different set of pedals?
It doesn't matter what position the cranks are in, it's always the same.
I'm holding the cranks, not the pedals, so I doubt it's them. I don't have any others to try.
That's what I thought at first, but I can't see any sign of a crack. Would it be visible?
It started off only happening when pedalling hard, but it seems to be getting worse, now light pedalling causes it too.
Quick release on wheels creaking
Handle bar clamp.
Could be seat post / seat but you can tell by getting out of the saddle.
Does sound (sic) like it's the bottom bracket is on its way out. Depending on the type of BB it can vary from easy to slightly less so to replace.
Sadly a lot of bike componentry these days seems to have a built in obsolescence of shockingly short timescales. I suspect the industry's following the lead of the electronics firms where it's easier and cheaper to replace than repair. A shimano hollowtech BB is as little as £13 and takes maybe ten minutes to replace. A set of bearings won't be much cheaper and may take twice as long to refit.
Seat post is a favourite - a smear of grease stops that (and it's a good thing anyway). After that, it gets more expensive (as above)
> Does sound (sic) like it's the bottom bracket is on its way out.
My money's on the BB. Just replaced mine on my training bike. Only cost £10 off Ebay. Bit bloody tight to get 'em off like, so you need the tools and a long bar, but no real challenge.
My bikes done about 1000 miles from new. I didn't think it would fail this soon with just light road use. I suppose that was a bit optimistic.
You've all convinced me it's the bottom bracket, so I'll give that a go. It's only a tenner (plus another tenner for the tool... Why does everything on a bicycle require a special tool?).
Thanks for your help.
worth a try if you have the tools remove the cranks and bb and refit. my track bike developed a nasty creak caused by a very slightly loose bb (no movement at bb but a creak when peddling)
I would definitely do a thorough inspection of the frame for cracks even if you suspect and change the bottom bracket
Definitely check the frame. I've had to replace the bottom bracket before following the tell-tale creaking. When the creaking appeared to start again only a few months later I was a bit annoyed that the bb had gone so quickly, but it hadn't. The downtube was broken - not just cracked, but completely detatched, and was just resting in place. No idea what caused it, and i'd cycled the bike for a couple of weeks like that!
Get some grease as well. I'd try simply refitting the existing BB first as it may have some dirt in amongst the threads. Don't assume that it was built correctly in the first place. One of my bikes had a clicking sound from day one. I removed the BB and there was flake of metal in there about the size of a squashed grain of rice! Also dirt does tend to get in so they do need a bit of TLC.
Although annoyingly not if you don't have the right tools. My bike has some FSA chainset and BB with some sort of splined system for the holding the cranks to the BB. Of course I invested in a bb tool and crank extractor a couple of years ago but for square taper bbs! I haven't even worked out if I can take the cranks of safely yet with my extractor, so don't know if the BB tool will fit, although I suspect not of course!
Sounds like the Octolink system. All our bikes are hollowtech except for my wife's road bike which uses the latest press-fit system for which I don't have the tool :-(
Before spending money on a new BB, tighten the saddle clamp and the chainring bolts.
> Get some grease as well. I'd try simply refitting the existing BB first as it may have some dirt in amongst the threads. Don't assume that it was built correctly in the first place.
I'll do that anyway, but it creaks even when I've isolated those bits.
Hope that helps
My old bike creaked when I stood on the pedals. I tightened up the chainset bolts, replaced BB, checked pedals were properly tightened all to no avail. Turned out that is was a pedal problem.
The first clipless pedals I bought were Shimano PD-R535 pedals that had a chromed top plate held in place by 3 philips screws.
I finally cured the creaking when I found that the chrome plates were working loose, and all that was needed was to tighten the screws.
I never liked the pedals anyway - they were a bit of a faff to locate the cleats, so I eventually ditched them for Look Keos.
Try giving it a bloody good wash with plenty of muck off and GT 85/55??
I had some clicking that went away with said wash.
I agree that lots of quality parts seem obsolesent fairly rapidly these days. After BB I next took ages to identify my rear hub has worn several cassettes from the inside out. Similarly it creaks and groans and clicks as a compatible cassette is inexplicably dismantled around it.
If your headset is marginally loose i.e. you can turn the spacers it will creak when out of the saddle.
Seriously we're now all dying to know what it was.
I would suspect pedals first. Try swapping them for a pair you know is OK
> Seriously we're now all dying to know what it was.
Rest assured, as soon as I have any news I'll post an update :-)
Wasn't pedals (swapped pedals and noise still there)
Wasn't bottom bracket (tried to replace but couldn't undo!) - noise still there after refit at same position when cranking. On inspection the BB was still solid.
Dismantled crank rings and found corrosion on bolts and between big ring and small ring. Cleaned corrosion and reassembled with grease on all mating faces and threads.
Now I have heard creak in headset, suspected grit. Grrrr...but at least no special tools required!
I don't think so. Definitely something I should check before removing the BB.
Does anyone know if it's possible to remove the cranks without an extractor? I still don't have the tools. Seeing as the cranks are ally and the shaft is steel, I thought a go with a blowlamp on the crank and a tap with a hammer might shift it?
I wouldn't risk it, you 'could' change the properties of the metal cranks/weaken them if you heat them too much.
I had the same problem, on my bike, and arrived at the same solution as you did.
Try taking the crank off the BB and cleaning the taper on the BB as well as the hole in the crank. Mine creaked years back and it turned out to be a bit of grit between the BB and the crank.
The headset is an area that I had very little knowledge of .
Riding along a forest track (on CX bike) ,was hearing a rattling noise.
initially thought the noise was the Cateye computer mount.Not that
Noise continued ,so assumed it was coming from the Ritchey forks.
Wasn`t till I got home and noticed the complete headset assembly was gone.
I`ll admit to not having any knowledge of a headset ,or its purpose.
I do now.
Yeah, you're probably right. I just haven't got the tool yet and if I had another method I could take them off today and have a look. I suppose it's not worth the risk.
I don't think it's the BB at all now, I think it's the frame. I took the forks off and clamped the frame in a vice, then stared flexing it. It creaks near the headstock area, especially if I clamp the top tube or headstock and hold the frame near the BB to flex it. If I move the clamp to the downtube (near the headstock) and flex, it's much quieter. It can't be anything to do with the headstock bearings as these were off the bike, and it shouldn't be the cranks or BB as there was no movement or pressure on these.
I've had a good look and I can't see any cracks. Is it possible for the paint to stay intact over a crack?
It has been getting steadily worse. I think my only option is to keep riding it until something breaks. It's bloody irritating though.
> I think my only option is to keep riding it until something breaks. It's bloody irritating though.
How fast do you ride? There's massive ouch potential there, especially if you land on the sheared bit of metal.
I'd get it checked out or just get a new frame.
I'm strictly a bimbler. I think a catastrophic failure must be incredibly unlikely. Even if the downtube breaks clean off, it's unlikely that the whole frame will collapse. I've ridden a motorcycle with a broken downtube, and Scomuir in a post above says that he rode his bicycle for a few weeks like that.
How would I go about getting it checked out, without either stripping the paint or x-ray?
I didn't know it was the frame until i'd cleared the muck off. The fact that I had not done anything specific to the bike that I could recall causing the crack, I couldn't risk using it once I knew. If it developed the crack with no obvious incident, who's to say it won't completely fail due to some other innocuous cause.
I'm a bike technophobe, despite rather enjoying getting out on my MTB from time to time. Having seen this thread and suffering the same with my bike, allied to various rattles and creaks, I took the very lazy choice to take it to Halfords for a service today.
Please be honest and rate my stupidity and chance of being shafted with a crap job on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being "good choice" and 10 "you're an idiot."
I hope I'm wrong, but unless you're quite lucky with the lad you get, at least 7.
With bikes, you just have to have a go. The parts are rarely so expensive that you can cost yourself dearly if you cock up. I bought a reasonable tool set from Wiggle and just dived in.
So far so good
I too hope you're wrong! Unfortunately I don't like faff, hence being into running and bouldering; our Hoover frustrates me, so taking bikes apart may tip me over the edge.
That said, I reminded myself the other day how partial I am to a whiff of WD40....
I've never taken a bike to Halfords, and based on their reputation I don't intend to. Hopefully you'll be lucky and get someone who knows and cares about what they are doing, and for some strange reason has ended up working there. It does happen, but I'd put money on them oiling it and tweaking the adjusters and calling that a full service. That's pretty much what my local independent shop did for me, so I won't be going back there either.
Please let us know if they improved it at all!
Just had my BB replaced by a local shop. Glad I didn't have to do it myself as they had put it in the vice to remove. (This didn't creak when it was on the way out)
As for odd creaks in bikes. Mine had one that only occurred when I was pedalling sitting down and I eventually tracked it down to the pannier rack.
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