One of the perks that swayed me to give up working from home was the allure of the ‘Bike to Work’ scheme. I’m barely able to stick to a gym schedule even after noticing that my girth size goes up an inch every few weeks. So now, I cycle to work!
But just a few weeks in, something went wrong. I was riding my Halfords bike on a busy urban hilly road with a 20% twisty ascent when the rear brake ceased to function. Indeed, this isn’t supposed to happen on a reasonably new bicycle. Some common issues with Halfords bikes are flat tires, loose and creaky parts, component failure, rust build-up, and chain issues.
They arise from normal wear and tear, improper use, and failure to clean and service the bike.
If you’re thinking of getting a Halfords bike or are just curious about its problems, I’ve got you covered. Stick around as we explore the common issues reported by users of these bikes.
9 Most Common Problems with Halfords Bikes
1. Creaky Bits
As the wind rushes through your helmet and the chain runs perfectly against the cassette coupled with the hum of tires on the tarmac, you can vividly make out a grating noise. Or was it a squeak?
You’ll have to be keen to identify and potentially resolve any ‘sound’ issues. It’s critical to address these concerns as soon as possible to reduce the danger of injury or damage to the bike. Use this checklist to diagnose issues involving creaking, squealing, or clicking sounds.
2. Creaking Saddle
It might be that it is just loosely fastened or that the saddle clamps are caked in residue. Tighten the saddle rails to the seat post brackets if it’s loose using an Allen key.
Clean and grease frequently, especially during the winter and wet season, remove mud and water.
3. Creaking Seatpost
This is a very typical location for creaks to appear. Seatpost sounds may be generated by the frame’s design or a clogged interface. While there isn’t much you can do about the frame design other than replacing it or buying a new bike; you can fix the interface.
Keeping bolts and contact points clean will help prevent unwanted sounds from developing.
4. Clicking Pedals
The pedal body, axle, bearings, or cleat might all produce noise in the pedal area. The cleats within the casing may be moving too much, the bearings may be worn out, or the springs within the pedal may be dry. It might also be caused by anything as insignificant as your shoe brushing against the crank arm.
Loose cleats indicate wear in the pedal body, and replacing them will reduce squeals. The same may be said about the bearings. To decrease wear and tear, clean and lubricate the springs and cleats.
5. Squealing Brakes
Squealing brakes might be caused by dirt or grease on the brake pads. Begin with a quick wipe using a piece of cloth. If the problem persists, remove the brake pads and readjust them.
6. Flat Tires
Flat tires are common among bikers. They can be caused by anything ranging from nails to shattered glass. This is why a bike pump, a spare tube, and a Halfords Essentials Puncture Repair Kit are essential.
If the tire is just low on air, pump extra air into it. If it does not resolve, look for a puncture site.
Larger punctures are more visible, but you might be required to replace the whole inner tube. Small holes may be difficult to locate, but they are quick to fix.
7. Failure of Components
Bike parts fail for various causes, including a lack of care, inappropriate usage, and disuse. Should you fail to ride your bike for its intended purpose, keep it clean, and take it in for regular maintenance checks, don’t be shocked when it breaks down within a year.
Furthermore, if you push a bike beyond its maximum performance, you are more likely to cause damage to the bike. This might void your warranty rights.
8. Rust Accumulation
Even though we take pleasure in our unpredictable Great British weather, after a bright day at work, you can find yourself pedaling home through murky puddles. When it rains, the most severe offenders are children. They deliberately pursue muddy splatters.
So, clean your bike regularly to help prevent rust buildup and maintain components like the disc brakes and chain in excellent condition. To do so, follow these simple steps:
- Use a hosepipe to blast off any stubborn caked mud.
- Using a pail of soapy water, thoroughly clean your bike a good once-over with a brush.
- Rinse with clean water.
- Dry off excess water.
- Let it stand outside for a few minutes to completely dry. Moisture on a bike will cause it to rust.
9. Chain Issues
Another common problem is a chain that slips, skips or falls off completely. A slipping chain is fixed by returning it to the corset.
To detect a skipping or falling chain, watch the derailleurs. It happens due to a tight or an extra link, respectively. If you lack adequate skills, have a professional look it over.
Do Halford Bikes Have a Warranty?
Yes, they do. The bike company has a limited Lifetime Warranty and other shorter-term covers.
Limited Lifetime Service
Halfords, like many other traditional bike stores, provides its clients with some form of bike warranty service. Whereas most are voided after a couple of years, Halfords gives a limited lifetime warranty. This means that they will repair and replace specific faulty components.
And, as with every other form of cover, there’s always a catch. The most common cause of dissatisfied owners is a misunderstanding of the T&Cs.
This guarantee applies to all Halfords and Halfords exclusive brands for the original owner, such as Apollo, Assist, Boardman, Carrera, Indi, and Voodoo. It covers:
- Replacement of the frame and rigid forks.
- To fix a manufacturing flaw.
The breakdown or defect should not result from normal wear and tear for your application to be granted. Tires, brake pads, the powertrain, and chains are common culprits and may not be covered under this warranty.
Halfords can replace all other components on the bike used within a year unless the manufacturer says otherwise.
- Electric components – 1 to 2 years guarantee. The battery comes with a 2-year or 500 full cycle charge warranty.
- Suspension forks – 1 year
- Paintwork – 1-year guarantee, excluding sunlight damage, cable-rub, scratches, or scuffs.
- Other components – Depends on the particular item.
All Halfords bikes warranties are non-transferable. You also cannot claim if you’ve modified or altered the bike in any way.
The Bottom Line
Whether you’re thinking of buying a bike from Halfords or already own one, ensure you regularly service and maintain your cycling machine. And just like any other bike brand, Halfords bikes are prone to flats, chain issues, loosely-fixed parts, wear and tear problems, and component failures.
Most of the issues can be fixed DIY but if you satisfy the criteria for free service, take advantage of the opportunity. But I don’t expect flat tires lining up at the service queue at the local Halfords store.