Bicycles are not a cheap purchase these days. Bike shop quality bicycles start in the $300 range for entry level equipment. Even the big box stores now sell bicycles in the same price range, granted you can also get them as low as $60 or so. No matter where you purchase your bike, some quick and simple maintenance will extend the life of your ride. If you’re willing to spend a little extra time to take care of your bike, it could make the quality of your ride better as well.
The biggest impact on bicycles is the weather. Our Florida sun, rain and constant weather change is not good for all the metal and rubber on your bike. Unfortunately, the less you pay for the bike, the greater the chance the weather will have a negative impact on it. (Cheaper metals corrode and rust quicker). The easiest solution is to store it indoors.
Storing your bicycle inside your home is the best option. The climate controlled environment keeps the humidity low and protects the rubber from the damage the heat can eventually cause. The garage is the next best place. Though the climate is not as controlled, the bike is protected from the elements. A shed or other outside room would be last. The bike may not get direct rain, but the humidity tends to stay higher in these areas which will ultimately start the rust/corrosion process. Keeping your bicycle completely outside will leave it exposed to the elements which will quickly cause deterioration.
When storing your bicycle in a garage or shed, there are a few other factors to look out for. Make sure to keep it away from any kind of chemicals. Believe it or not, chemical fumes actually leach through their containers and into the air. Paints, thinners, fertilizers and pool chemicals are the most common culprits and will quickly cause corrosion. Broken spokes due to corrosion from stored chemicals is a common issue. Also, avoid storing your bike is direct sunlight. Some of the new brightly colored paints on bikes will fade with prolonged exposure to sunlight. There is a local mountain biker who’s bike is white on one side and neon yellow on the other because he always stored his bike near a window and one side received direct sunlight.
If you transport your bike inside your car, leave the windows cracked. The temperature inside your car can get extremely high during the summer. It’s hot enough to blow out a tube. Seriously!