Kick Scooter Maintenance - What You Need To Know
Having a kick scooter is not only fun for adults and children, but it’s an excellent way to get the physical exercise so many of us need. It is important to know how to continue looking after your scooter whether it is a top kids scooter or a best-selling adult kick scooter so you can prolong the riding adventures. This article will outline what items you should be monitoring and give step by step instructions for the most common kick scooter maintenance points and repairs.
Before Each Ride
- Check tightness of quick release levers, nuts and bolts
- Check tire pressure, recommended pressure is on the side of each tire
- Check tires for damage
- Make sure brakes are functioning properly.
- Monitor brake pads and potential contact with rims
- Monitor positioning of brake cables
- If riding in the dark make sure lights are functioning
- Make sure handlebars turn freely and aren’t loose
- Lubricate the brake cables with multipurpose 3 in 1 oil
- Monitor spokes for tightness and tighten if needed
- Monitor tires for damage, replace if necessary
- Clean the tires and frame with water and protect with a polish wax that is non-abrasive
- Monitor wheel bearing adjustment; take scooter for shop if adjustment is needed
Common Maintenance and Repairs
Some items of maintenance and repairs are common to all types of kick scooters
They have the same components in common and are used in a similar way so the wear and tear is often the same from model to model.
Handle Grip Replacement
If you notice your hands hurt or slip when riding your scooter, chances are you need to replace your handle grips.
- A container for water
- Utility Scissors
- Necessary Parts
- Scooter Handle Grips
Steps to Effectively Change Your Handle Grips
- Wedge one end of the scissors between the metal tube and handle grip
- Cut the grip off and repeat for second grip
- In warm water, soak the new handle grips for 2 – 3 minutes
- The longer they soak, the larger they get
- Beware! soaking the grips for longer than a few minutes could damage them
- Dry the inside of the new handle grips and then slide each grip onto the T-tube headset
- If they won’t slide with ease, soak the grips for an additional 1 – 3 minutes
- Allow the handle grips to dry and shrink back to their regular size for 24 hours before using
Kick Scooter Wheel Replacement
When the scooter has been in use over a period of time, one of the wheels could deform. It may even develop flat spots or cracks in some areas. This can make for a rough ride and these steps are necessary to replace the damaged wheel on your scooter. We cover this subject in depth in our how to guide Replacing Kick Scooter Wheels and Bearings but here are the essential steps to take.
Tools needed for replacing scooter wheels
- 3/16” Allen wrench
- Necessary Parts
- Scooter Wheel
Steps To Easily Replace your Scooter Wheels
- Turn the scooter upside-down with the handlebars on the ground
- Using two 3/16” Allen wrenches, insert one in each screw on the sides of the wheel
- Hold one screw in place and turn the other in a counter-clockwise direction to loosen it
- Once both screws are removed the wheel will be free and easy to remove
- During reassembly, do not over-tighten screws, this may strip them
- The screws should be just tight enough to prevent the wheel from wobbling
- Look for a metal sleeve in the center of the bearing when replacing the wheel that may be out of line
- Forcing a screw through a sleeve that is not in line may potentially ruin the wheel
- Remove all obstructions inside the bearing of the new wheel and move the inner sleeve in the bearing with an Allen key
- This allows the screws to slide into the bearing freely
- Finally, put the replacement wheel in place in the frame of the scooter
Aligning the Steering Column
At times a scooter will move in a different direction than intended
These steps will show you how to align the steering column with the front wheel, allowing the scooter to move properly in the right direction.
Tools Needed to Align The Scooter Steering Column
- 3/16” Allen wrench
- Locate the collar clamp near the base of the steering column
- Then, insert a 3/16” Allen wrench into the screw in the collar clamp to loosen it
- The collar clamp will then be free to move and may slide around the steering column
- Grasp the steering column firmly and turn the wheel by hand
- Be certain the wheel is perpendicular to the handlebars and alignment is correct
- Return the collar clamp it to its original position to clamp down the stem
Tightening the T-tube Column
If you have had your steering column collapse suddenly, you need to follow these steps to correct it and prevent this from happening again.
- Locate the T-tube clamp; it is in the middle of the steering column
- Pull the lever away from the scooter, this open the clamp
- After locating the screw on the side of the clamp, turn the screw by hand in a clockwise direction and finally close the clamp
- If the lever is too tight to close simply loosen the screw slightly and try again
- This should now lock the T-tube in place
Adjusting the Tightness of the Steering Column
At times a scooter may develop a problem with the steering column and it becomes too difficult or too easy to steer. Following these steps will assist you in adjusting the column.
- First, locate the tightening assembly which consists of an upper nut and a lower nut
- If loosening the steering column, turn the upper nut counter-clockwise and turn the lower nut counter-clockwise until it is tight against the upper nut
- If tightening the steering column, turn the lower nut clockwise until you reach the desired tightness and turn the upper nut clockwise until it is tight against the lower nut
We hope you gained some insight from our guide on kick scooter maintenance and fix tips that if done right will help your scooter provide years of fitness and fun.
Looking after your scooter is essential to keep it on the road and to keep you going. Even the best adult scooters like the MicroFlex Blue need maintenance more than a kids scooter because adults carry more weight which creates greater wear and tear.
Of course, if your scooter's problems are too complex to fix using this guide then go ahead and take the scooter to your local scooter or cycle repair workshop!