Why Is Your BMX Bike Hard to Pedal? (Everything Explained)

Biking is one of the best ways to pass time, exercise or have fun around time. BMX bikes, specifically, bring the flair and the flavor to biking. They are unique, affordable and easy to maintain. With a quality BMX bike, you can dirt jump, perform tricks and pull stunts in amazing ways.

However, just like any other normal bike, BMX bikes come with their own set of challenges. Here, we focus on how you can improve your bike’s pedaling ability.

Why Is My BMX Bike Hard to Pedal?

On a normal day, you should be able to pedal your BMX bike easily and conveniently. However, there comes a time when, for one reason or another, the bike becomes so hard to pedal.

This can be caused by a number of reasons. We analyze them below:

1. The Bike’s Chain is Rusty

For a BMX bike to pedal properly, the chain must be well-lubricated. However, it is not a surprise to find your chain rusty and hard especially if it is subjected to moist conditions.

Rusty chains have increased friction. This makes the interlocking difficult, therefore, causing difficulty in pedaling.

2. Tire Pressure

If your BMX bike has been working perfectly and all of a sudden you are having difficulty in pedaling, chances are that the tire pressure is low. A tire with the right amount of pressure should move without any problems (assuming the bike doesn’t have any other deficiencies).

When your tire pressure is low, you will notice that you lose speed quickly and that you have to pedal more often than normal. Low pressure causes the tire to bulge when it touches the ground thereby making it difficult to pedal.

3. Brake Pads Might Be Faulty

In an occasion where your BMX bike’s brake pads touches the rim of your wheel or the brake disc, difficulty in pedaling might occur. This can happen to either the front wheel or the back wheel or both.

One way to find out if your brake pads are working fine is to monitor each wheel individually. Use your hand to spin one of the wheels and observe how it spins. If it spins perfectly, then the issue is not with the brake pads.

On the other hand, if the wheel spins then stops or its speed reduces sharply, chances are that the brake pads are touching the rim or the disc. This is the cause for your difficulty in pedaling.

4. Your BMX Bike is Not Right For You

Given that BMX bikes are different from the regular mountain bikes and all, sometimes difficulty in pedaling might be caused by your own physique. For instance, if you are too tall, pedaling especially over long distances can be a challenge.

To figure out if your bike is fine, try pedaling while standing. If your BMX bike moves perfectly, then you are the problem.

5. Riding Over Rough Terrains

While it is true that your BMX bike can withstand vibrations and shocks from jumping and pulling stunts, it is also true that its functions are limited. A BMX bike has only one gear. This means that it cannot cruise in the same way as a mountain bike, which has over 20 gears.

Riding your BMX bike over steep terrains and other uneven surfaces may cause difficulty in pedaling.

How to Make Your BMX Bike Easy to Pedal

To every problem, there is a solution. In the same spirit, there are solutions to your BMX bike pedaling issues. Consider the following tips:

1. Maintain and Lubricate Your Chains Regularly

To avoid rustiness, clean and lube your BMX bike chain regularly. This helps remove the gunk and the moving parts can do so with as little resistance from friction as possible.

How regularly you clean and lube your chain will depend on the weather. During the warm seasons, lubing your chain once in a month is ideal. However, if the weather is cold, you will have to maintain your chain at least weekly.

2. Always Ensure that Your Tires Have the Right Pressure Levels

Before setting out to ride your BMX bike, always ensure that the wheels have the right pressure. If your wheel has a puncture, fix it first before going on the adventure.

If you are not sure about the right pressure levels, you can always check the recommended tire pressure printed on the sidewall of your tire. Make sure the pressure levels are within the indicated levels.

3. Loosen the Tension of Your Brake Pads

As aforementioned, very tight brake pads cause difficulty in pedaling. To curb this problem, loosen the cable tension by adjusting the bolts until you find the right balance. If you are having problems, you can take your BMX bike to a bike shop for further assistance.

4. Find the Right BMX Bike for You

If you cannot pedal your bike perfectly because of your height, try finding a perfect one for you. Alternatively, if the bike’s seat is adjustable, pull it up and see whether you have enough legroom for pedaling.

5. Ride Your Bike on the Right Terrains

Bearing in mind that you do not have a lot of gear options to pick from, always ride your BMX bike on terrains where it can navigate comfortably. Additionally, BMX bikes are not always suitable for cruising.

If you find it difficult to pedal over long distances, take it as a reminder that your bike is not designed for that purpose.

In Conclusion

The last thing that a biker can wish for is to have troubles pedaling a BMX bike. The stunts, the jumps and the flicks depend highly on the ability to pedal conveniently. Unfortunately, BMX bikes can sometimes have pedaling issues.

Different factors contribute to this problem. For instance, the chain can be rusty, the pressure levels in the tires can be lower than the required minimum and your brake pads might be malfunctioning. It is also possible that the BMX is not right for you or you are riding it on the wrong terrain.

Common solutions include ensuring that the pressure levels are right, lubing the chain regularly, checking the brake pads, and ensuring that you have the right BMX bike.

Leave a Comment