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The M check

Image showing bicycle with letter M identifying areas for checking

A widely used safety check that allows your bike to be safe in five minutes. Follow the strokes of the M to make sure you don't miss anything.

Download M check advice

Get your bike checked by a qualified cycle mechanic if you encounter anything that you are unsure of.

1. Front wheel and Tyre

  • Is the wheel nut or quick-release tight?
  • Is the wheel central in frame?
  • Are there any loose or missing spokes?
  • Are the bearings tight?
  • Are the rims worn down?
  • Check that the tyre tread isn’t worn and inspect for damage and bulges.
  • Is there enough air in the tyres (check recommended P.S.I. on tyre)?

2. Handlebars and brakes

  • Is the handlebar aligned with front fork?
  • Are all the bolts tightened?
  • Do your lights and bell (if fitted) work?
  • Do the brakes lock the wheels firmly?
  • Are all the components tight?
  • Are any of the brake cables frayed?
  • Do the brake blocks rub against the wheel rims?
  • Do the brake levers touch the handle bar when pulled?
  • Can your fingers reach the brake levers easily?

3. Frame, pedals and chain

  • Are the forks loose at the point that they enter the frame (the headset)?
  • Is there any rust on the frame?
  • Does the frame look damaged or bent?
  • Are the pedals stable on the cranks?
  • Do the pedals spin round easily?
  • Moving the cranks into and away from the bike will show if your bottom bracket has any movement.

4. Saddle

  • Is the saddle secure on the seat post?
  • Does the seat post wobble?
  • Is the saddle at the correct height?
  • Ensure the seat post isn’t above minimum insertion height indicated on the post.

5. Back wheel and tyre

  • Is the wheel nut or quick-release tight?
  • Is the wheel central in frame?
  • Are there any loose or missing spokes?
  • Are the bearings tight?
  • Are the rims worn down?
  • Check that the tyre tread isn’t worn and inspect for damage and bulges.
  • Is there enough air in the tyres (check recommended P.S.I. on tyre)?
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