Whether you're a seasoned cyclist or a casual rider, performing pre-ride safety checks is crucial to ensure a smooth and secure cycling experience. Neglecting these checks can lead to potential accidents or breakdowns on the road. By incorporating pre-ride safety checks into your routine, you not only enhance your safety but also contribute to a more enjoyable and trouble-free cycling experience. Remember, a few minutes spent on these checks can save you from potential headaches and ensure a safer ride. 

Do take note that these tips does not remove the need to send your bicycle to a professional mechanic for an annual service. 

Here are 6 essential steps to include in your pre-ride routine:

Inspecting and Inflating Tire

Maintaining optimal tire pressure is crucial for a safe and comfortable ride. Check the recommended pressure range on the tyre's outer side. The general rule of thumb is to ensure that the air pressure falls within 80-90% of the maximum recommended pressure. If you are using a Giant hookless wheelset, kindly refer to the following link for the tyre pressure recommendation. Please consult our staff if you are uncertain.

Example for image of recommended tyre indication

Example for image of worn tyre knobs and sidewall

How to inflate tubeless tires (link to another page)

Tighten Quick Release or Thru Axles

If your wheels are secured with quick-release levers or thru axles, ensure they are closed with the appropriate tension. An adequately tightened axle ensures the wheel stays in place, preventing accidents caused by a loose wheel while riding. If you're unsure about the correct usage of wheel quick-release levers, seek assistance from a certified bicycle mechanic for guidance. 

Example for image of quick release lever
Quick Release Lever
When locking the quick release lever, you will feel increasing tension as you close the lever from the 0° (open) to 180° (closed) position. From 0° to 90°, it is free of tension. From 90° to 135°, you can feel slight tension but you should still be able to close it with your fingers. From 135° to 180°, the tension will be higher and you will probably have to use your palm to close the lever.
To unlock: Open the quick release lever to the 0° position.
To tighten: Hold onto the nut and turn the quick release lever clockwise.
To loosen: Hold onto the nut and turn the quick release lever anti-clockwise.
To lock: Close the quick release lever to the 180° position.
Thru Axles
Some thru-axles have an in-built lever, else a 5 or 6mm allen key is required. For thru-axle systems, the required torque is often written on the axle itself.  If a torque wrench is not readily available, it is recommended to undo the lever by a quarter revolution and tighten it back by a quarter revolution again to to have a hand-feel of how tight it should be.

To lock: Turn the axle clockwise
To loosen: Turn the axle anti-clockwise

Steering Control Test (twist and downwards push)

Conduct a simple but effective test to ensure the stability of your handlebars. Any movement could indicate loose or improperly tightened components. This quick check helps ensure that your handlebars are securely attached, preventing potential accidents caused by a sudden loss of steering control.

Step 1: Ensure your headset is compressed. With your front brakes engaged, attempt to rock your steerer with your free hand. There should be no movement between the headset spacers and the frame. If any, tighten the screw shown on step 3.
Step 2: Ensure your handlebar is secured. Apply weight on the handlebars. If the bar slips, loosen the bolts on the faceplate, reposition the handlebar and tighten them evenly in an alternating pattern (as shown below).
Tighten in the order from 1 to 4 and do it 2 revolutions at a time.
While holding onto the front wheel between your legs, attempt to twist the handlebar. If the stem slips and is not aligned with the front wheel, proceed to step 3.
Step 3: Loosen the bolts (red arrow) on both side. The stem and handlebar should swing independently from where the wheel is pointing now. 

Re-align such that the stem and wheel are inline. Tighten the screw on the top cap before tightening the bolts on both sides of the stem again.

Secure Seat post & Saddle

A loose seatpost can lead to discomfort and accidents in the event the seatpost slips. The types of seat clamps used on Giant, Liv, Momentum and Cadex bicycles are 1 of the following 4. Turn anti-clockwise to loosen and clockwise to tighten. After tightening, give your seat a little twist or pump it downwards to check if it is secure.

Integrated Seat Clamp
Required Tools: 4 or 5mm Allen key
Integrated seat clamps have a maximum torque recommendation indicated on the top of the seat clamp. Over-tightening may cause damage to the seatpost and frame. If it is too loose, the seatpost may slip when riding across a bump.
External Seat Clamp
Required Tools: 4 or 5mm Allen key
The recommended torque is written on the seat clamp but in case it is scratched off, 5Nm should be sufficient. It could range from 5Nm to 8Nm.
Quick Release Seat Clamp
Release lever (orange arrow) to adjust the seat height. To ensure that the seat clamp is secured, close the lever (reverse direction of orange arrow). Some resistance should be felt between the 90 to 135 degrees range as the lever closes. From 135 to 180 degrees, the resistance increases and you may have to use your entire palm to close it in.
D-fuse Seat Clamp
Required Tools: 4 or 5mm Allen key
The D-fuse seat clamp is unique to Giant and Liv bicycles. When loosening or tightening the bolts, it is crucial that the 2 bolts on each side have to be turned alternatingly. For example, 2-3 revolutions on Bolt A  followed by Bolt B and back to A again until it is loose enough to move the seat post. Tighten them in the same alternating pattern. 
The recommended torque is written on the seat clamp but in case it is scratched off, 5Nm should be sufficient. It could range from 5-6Nm.

Securing Saddle

There are various seatpost clamp on the market and the common ones used by Giant, Liv, Momentum and Cadex are the top-bottom saddle rail clamps. It could be fastened using 1 or 2 bolts.

For the saddle clamp found on most Giant or Liv drop bar road bikes, the front bolt is tightened or loosened from the top, in order to adjust the saddle tilt. Depending on your saddle, you may have to use your fingers to tighten the front bolt. It is normal to not tighten the front bolt if the saddle does not have a cut-out at the top. Be sure to tighten the rear bolt to the indicated torque specification.

For the saddle clamp found on most Giant, Liv & Momentum recreational bikes, be sure to tighten or loosen them in alternating fashion to avoid breaking the bolts due to uneven tension. Once again, be sure to follow the torque specification indicated.

Example for Torque Specification Indicated on Saddle


Brake Check

Properly functioning brakes and gears are essential for your safety on the road. Braking power deteriorates when the brake pads grow thinner. Mechanical brake cables have to be tightened and hydraulic brakes have to be rebled to improve braking power. If your brake levers are really close to the handlebar when depressed, refrain from riding the bike and seek assistance from our mechanics.

Examples of Properly Functioning Brakes vs Faulty Brakes

Checking for Brake Pad Wear

Example Image of Rim Brake Pads
Replace the brake pads when they show signs of thinning towards the wear limit indicator (red line), if present. Alternatively, change the pads when the water distribution channels on it are no longer visible.

Example Image of Disc Brake Pads
Replace the brake pads either when they wear down near the base or as they approach a thickness of 1.5mm for optimal braking efficiency.

Noisy Brakes

Friction between the braking surface slows down the bicycle and brings it down to a stop. Some noise is created during this process, especially in wet conditions. However, there could be 2 reasons if the brakes are screeching like a horn and braking power is poor. First, the brake pads are worn and have hardened. Second, the brake pads or braking surface has been contaminated with oil. We recommend using professional disc brake cleaners. Alternatively, there are several household methods to clean off the oil on the internet and the simplest method is:

    1. Wet the brake pads and rotors
    2. Apply dishwashing liquid onto the rotor and let it foam up. Spin the wheels and apply brakes gradually 4 to 5 times.
    3. Rinse off the foam.

Please seek assistance from a bicycle mechanic if the screeching persists.

Gears Check

Shift through all gears to ensure smooth transitions and proper chain engagement. If the gears are making unusual noises and/or are “jumping” on its own, attempt to resolve it by following this video.  The unusual sound should go away within 2-4 revolutions of the barrel adjuster. Do take note that you should only do this a maximum of 2 times before you need to reset the cable tension. Please seek assistance from a bicycle technician if the problem persists.