Yorkshire Times
A Voice of the Free Press
1:00 AM 20th April 2024

Cycling Towards A Greener Future This Earth Day

photo credit © Natnan Srisuwan via
photo credit © Natnan Srisuwan via
Earth Day takes place on Sunday 22nd of April. This day serves as a reminder of the urgent need for collective action to address pressing environmental challenges, such as climate change, pollution, deforestation, and many more. Embracing small changes in people’s everyday life and day-to-day routines helps them to take a step towards a more sustainable future.

Making small changes in transportation habits, such as swapping a few car rides for cycling, can have a big impact on sustainability. Whether it's commuting to work, cycling to the grocery store, or enjoying a family bike ride, choosing to cycle instead of drive is a simple way to live more sustainably.

On average, cars emit 0.2 kg (0.5 lbs) of CO2 per mile driven, which can be saved by cycling. For example, biking 10 miles instead of driving could save around 2 kg (4.5 lbs) of CO2 emissions. Cycling not only reduces carbon emissions but it also helps to ease traffic congestion, making commuting more efficient for everyone.

James Whitten, Marketing Manager at cycleGuard says:
“Swapping four wheels for two is not only better for the planet, but also offers many mental and physical health benefits”

With summer approaching and longer evenings ahead, cyclists have more opportunities to cycle. However, the enjoyment of these rides can be affected by a malfunctioning bike. Cyclists who routinely clean and service their bicycles can avoid major issues. Neglecting minor concerns like rattling or squeaking may escalate into severe problems such as a broken chain or flat tyre.

Ahead of Earth Day, leading cycle and e-bike insurer cycleGuard shares few effective bike maintenance tips to help encourage individuals to cycle more, whilst ensuring their safety.

Bike cleaning

Keeping a bike grit and dirt-free will help the drivetrain to remain smooth and enable cyclists to easily change gears. When cleaning a bike, whether standing it upright or using a workstand, it is essential the bike is thoroughly rinsed to remove dirt and grit. When cleaning the chain, use a brush and degreaser on both sides, including the chain rings.

Brakes checking

Brakes in excellent condition are crucial for cyclists' safety and should be carefully checked. To check them, spin the wheel and pull the brakes, the wheel should lock immediately. The wheel should be off the ground when checking this. It is important that the brake pads are making even contact with either side of the wheel rim and that they're wearing at an even rate. In addition, check that the brake lever operates cleanly and ensure that the brake cables have enough tension in them.

Wheels checking

Dirty wheels can compromise cyclists’ safety as the brake pads won't grip as effectively on grubby rims and there is an increased risk of getting a puncture. Inspecting the wheels carefully is important. Once the wheels are cleaned, check that the spokes are correctly tensioned and then flip the bike over and ensure that the wheel spins freely without any side-to-side movement.

Warns Whitten:
“Regular bike checks and maintenance will ensure the bicycle is safe to use and it will help to extend the bike’s lifecycle.”

Read more bike maintenance tips here