How Often Should I Service My Mountain Bike? 

Mechanic servicing mountain bike

Servicing your mountain bike is a lot like doing your taxes. It’s something that you should do once between February and April, but it’s also something that you need to think about year-round. The beginning of the year is the time for a basic tune up to get your ride ready for the season. More targeted mountain bike service, something like bleeding your brakes or cleaning and lubing your fork, isn’t as straight forward.  

The recommended service intervals are usually defined in terms of hours ridden, but this still isn’t an exact timeframe. Someone lapping greens covered in loam for 50 hours will have a much different service schedule than someone ripping gnarly rock gardens and big drops. Knowing how often you should service your bike comes down to knowing your bike and listening to the signs. As a general rule of thumb, you should service your bike every 3-4 months if you go on intense rides or if you frequently ride in poor conditions. Riders who are less aggressive can get away with servicing their bikes every 6 months to a year. 


Regular maintenance after riding goes a long way toward keeping your bike tuned. If you start to lapse on routine tasks like cleaning and lubing, your bike’s performance will begin to suffer. Rinse mud and gunk away from your components, but make sure to avoid waterlogging your seals and bearings. Spraying your bike with low-pressure water after a muddy ride keeps your bike at peak performance for longer. If you allow the mud to dry into dirt, it will clump grease away from your drivetrain.  

Even with routine cleaning, dirt and dust from the trails will naturally sap your precious grease, so it’s important to regularly give your drivetrain some love. If you hear a raspy clicking, that’s the sign that you’ve waited too long. Routinely degrease and lube your chain to keep your drivetrain humming. 

  • When to perform: After every ride


When it comes to servicing your mountain bike, don’t overlook the importance of maintaining your front and rear suspension. Whether you have a single-pivot, twin-link, or any other design, your bike’s rear suspension system is like its own little ecosystem. This component is crucial for absorbing impacts and providing a smooth, controlled ride over rough terrain. Failing to service your suspension will show in the comfort of your ride, and it could lead to potential safety hazards on the trail. 

Just like your rear suspension, knowing when to service your fork isn’t an exact science. After each ride, take a moment to inspect your fork for any signs of wear, such as oil leaks or loss of pressure. Cleaning the stanchions and seals regularly helps prevent dirt and debris from compromising performance. 

When it comes to more in-depth fork service, such as deep cleaning or replacing components, it’s often best left to the professionals. A skilled bike mechanic can ensure that your fork is properly serviced and tuned to suit your riding preferences. It’s a good idea not to skimp on servicing your front or rear suspension, as neglect can lead to costly repairs, uncomfortable rides, or injury. 

Depending on how hard you ride, you should service your front and rear suspension every year. If you’re unsure about tackling suspension maintenance yourself, don’t hesitate to seek assistance from a professional bike mechanic. They can help with more advanced tasks like servicing shocks and rebuilding dampers, ensuring your suspension stays dialed for your next adventure. 

When to perform: 

  • Intense Riding: Every 50 hours or 3-4 months 
  • Light Riding: Every 125 hours or yearly


Sure, suspension is important, but brakes are arguably your bike’s most important safety feature. You should inspect them before every ride (and sometimes during the ride) to make sure that everything is working as expected. Keep an eye (or ear) out for misalignment that causes the brakes pads to rub against your rotor or rim, depending on the type of braking system you have. It’s important to fix alignment issues as soon as possible to prevent premature wear and diminished performance. 

If you have hydraulic disc brakes, keeping up with service means changing your pads as well as periodically bleeding your brake lines. Bleeding your brakes removes air bubbles from the brake fluid, ensuring consistent and reliable braking performance. We recommend bleeding your brakes at least once per year, depending on your riding frequency and conditions. If you’re unsure about when to bleed your brakes or how to do it properly, it’s best to seek assistance from a professional bike mechanic. They can perform a thorough brake service, including brake bleeds, to keep your brakes operating at their best and ensure your safety on the trails. 

When to perform: 

  • Intense Riding: Every 50 hours or 3 months 
  • Light Riding: Every 125 hours or yearly 

Service Your Mountain Bike at Denver’s Best Shop

A lot of riders take the DIY route, and we love that. Others might lack the know-how or time to sit down with a wrench. Or you might not have the right wrench for the job. No matter what the reason, servicing your own mountain bike can sometimes be out of the question.  


That’s where we come in. 


Getting your mountain bike serviced at Base Camp Cyclery means getting your mountain bike serviced at Denver’s best bike shop. We treat every bike that rolls into the shop as if it were our own. Whether you’re bringing your bike in for a tubeless tire install or a drivetrain overhaul, your bike is in good hands. Our professional bike mechanics have spent most of their lives around bikes, and they have the experience to tackle any job. 


Don’t let neglected maintenance hold you back from enjoying your time on the trails. Schedule a service appointment with us today and see the difference that professional bike maintenance can make in your riding experience. Your bike will thank you, and you’ll enjoy safer, smoother, and more enjoyable rides. 

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