Brake rubbing slows down your bike speed. At the same time, it damages the pads & rims quickly. So you need to adjust bike brakes to get rid of rubbing.
How to adjust bike brakes to avoid disaster? Dive into the article to get expert tips & tricks to fix bike brake rubbing.
As a biker, it is natural to face squeaky & tight brakes on time of bike riding. Fortunately, adjusting bike brakes is an easy technique that you can do without a mechanic’s help. But a wrong approach can result in big problems with your bikes. Follow my effective tips & tricks to avoid damages & adjust bicycle brakes perfectly.
Would you struggle with the bike (brakes) rubbing?
I guess bike maintenance is a part of biking. If you are busy & find it complex, then it’s fine to take professional help. But you can save your money by following an easy method.
- First, check the wheel carefully, whether it is seated in the right way or not.
- Suppose the rotor is facing rubbing. Then lose 2 bolts that mount the disc brake to the frame. As a result, it tightens them back while you are pressing the brake lever. It indicates that it’s centralized.
- For further rubbing, you need to true the rotor with a truing fork. It is easy & simple.
- Now comes the turn to examine the brake pads, whether it damages badly & needs to replace or not.
- In case you feel your brake level much softer. It has a probability that you need to get brakes bled.
You may think it is complex to adjust brakes on a mountain bike, road bike, or BMX bikes. But luckily, it is the easiest task to adjust mountain, road, or BMX bike brakes.
Adjust Bike Brake Rubbing
Adjusting the bike brake rubbing process is varying depending on the different types of bike brakes. Here I am discussing four types of bike brake adjusting processes to make your work easier.
Adjust Disc Bike Brake
While you notice you are facing bike rubbing, the first step is to loosen two bolts. It basically mounts the disc brake to the frame. Then push your brakes to engage the rotor. As a result, it becomes centralized.
Do you still find the brake lever problematic? Then tighten those bolts again. It helps you to fix 70% of disk adjusting problems.
But you may still face light rubbing. Do you face rubbing? Well, don’t worry; generally, the rotor is not 100% straight. A disgusting rub may slow down your smooth ride. However, pick a rotor straightening tool to solve this issue. You can choose the Park tool Rotor or any preferable tool.
Now place your bike in a bike stand. You need to spin the wheel freely. So it’s important to use a stand. Now check the pads crucially to find whether the rotor is out of true or not. If you find a gap to open & close between the pads, that indicates the rotor needs truing. Now mark the area that needs truing & pin it far from the clipper. Use the truing tool gently near the rotor to the particular area to straighten it based on the needs. It only helps you when your rotor is rubbing in one particular spot.
In case you are confused about the rotor on the brake, then it is better to take a mechanic’s help. Remember, the rotor is highly fragile so don’t damage your expensive bike.
Now examine your brake pads. You can check from the top or backside of the brake to see the side of your pad. There is a spring to combine your pads. Suppose you find the spring dangerously goes close to the rotor that fully hides the pad or bike pistons are stuck out. Then you must change them.
There is no alternative to replacing. Fortunately, it is easy to change. You will find a pin & remove it. As a result, the pads will easily come out from the brake but the brake remains on your bike. It’s time to place your new pads inside & squeeze the pistons backward lightly with the backside of a wide screwdriver. It helps to create place accommodation for the latest thick pads. Guess what it also ensures that the pads won’t start rubbing quickly. So squeezing is essential to avoid further rubbing.
Tips For adjusting disk brakes
While making adjustments, it is mandatory to confirm that the wheel is in the frame perfectly. Wrong wheel positions frames can spoil your brake adjusting process. You won’t be able to fix the brake with the wrong seated wheel in the frame.
This is a great problem for road bikes with disc brakes. These bike brake types still apply emergency release skewers. So, I recommend using a bike stand or flipping the bike upward to ensure the wheel is seated in the frame appropriately.
Suppose you suddenly find a tight bike brake. Gradually It becomes tighter. Or you find your brake piston is stuck. In this type of scenario, your brakes need bleeding. Bleeding brake is a challenging task that needs skill & experience.
It is better to do this from an expert mechanic. Here the main challenge is to derive the fluid without air bubbles. Otherwise, It can spoil your task. It would be wise not to try it at home. Why should you take risks with your favorite vehicle? Moreover, it needs a small amount of money.
Adjust Caliper Brake
Adjusting the caliper brake is super simple. You can adjust it using your household tools, such as a barrel adjuster. Simply tightening the bike brake or loosening it. You will be surprised to know that it will solve the maximum common rubbing issues.
In case this basic strategy does not work. Then examine the frame connector bolt. If it is not tightened properly then it may slide the whole brake in times of riding. So you need to centralize it by engaging the brakes & tighten it properly.
Suppose your bike brakes are too loose. Then you should move the levers to the bars so that the brake set correctly. Besides, you can tighten the cable a bit. First, find the cable ending points & loosen the ending nut & bolts. Then haul the cable a little more & tighten it again.
Now it’s time to fix the brake pads. It is better to tighten the brake with a barrel adjuster. It will make the pads tight to the rim. You can lose the pad connector bolt & make little adjustments. But don’t slide it too far as the rim will keep it in the right area. After completing the adjustments, now loosen the barrel adjuster.
Suppose you are in a bike race & feeling brakes rubbing. In this emergency situation, it will be better to use a switch that is situated on the side of the caliper brakes. It helps to gently loosen the caliper brakes. As a result, your wheel gets relieved. When you are done with the competition, then you must adjust the brake properly to avoid future disasters.
After applying all the above tricks while you are facing rubbing in one particular spot, it indicates here the problem is in your wheel. So you need to take an expert mechanic to help to solve the issues.
Adjust Cantilever Brakes
Basically, some teenage road bicycles come with cantilever brakes. Here, a wire is used to maintain the two brake pads. When you press the lever that pulls up the wire. Unfortunately adjusting this type of brake is the toughest job.
If you want to ensure the brake is jamming & chatter-free then you should set the pads appropriately. You need to keep one brake pad into the rim. At the same time, the other brake pad should float on the other side. You need to place two pads symmetrically. As a result, you can confirm that the wires maintain both pads at the same length.
Also, it helps to ensure that the brake pads are positioned rightly on the rim. You can do this adjustment with an Allen key. But it needs time, dedication & patience. As you need to do light adjustments & examine crucially to find out the ideal balance.
You should focus on the brake cables. As it is open with the time there is a chance to get fragile. Suppose you find the braking sloppy or tight to press the levers. Then you need to change the cable also. Only adjusting the bike brake won’t solve your problem in this situation.
Adjusting trailer brakes
Most of the electric bike contains trailer brakes. It is a safety issue to avoid an accident. Follow the below steps to adjust the trailer brakes rubbing. It is better to adjust the brake after every 3months though you don’t face rubbing.
- Use a jack under the trailer to check the trailer wheels.
- Take away the trailer brake cover.
- Now you need to tighten the adjustment wheel crucially.
- Examine carefully whether the tire can spin easily with bit scraping.
- Finally, change the brake cover with a new one & rotate the tire nuts on both sides.
In this article, I cover some easy & simple ways to adjust your bike brake. Depending on your brake types you can choose the suitable process.
But if you are not confident then it’s better to take expert help. If you do the adjusting in a wrong way then it will be impossible to fix it. Adjusting bike brake rubbing will help you to make your ride outstanding & hassle-free. Don’t skip this fixing after noticing the rubbing. It may bring dangers to you.