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How To Fit & Remove Bike Pedals With Ease

How To Fit & Remove Bike Pedals With Ease


– In this video, I’m going
to quickly and clearly show you how to fit
and remove bike pedals. Now before I do, if you appreciate our content and you’d like to support the channel, please click Subscribe and
the bell notification icon. (upbeat music) To fit and remove bike pedals, you will need one of the following tools: a dedicated pedal spanner or pedal wrench. But, if you don’t have one of these, then you can also use a 15
millimeter flathead spanner or most modern pedals are
designed to be removed by an Allen key or hex wrench. This is most commonly eight millimeters. However, some other ones
can use six millimeters. Optional bonus tools are a
rag to clean the pedal threads and some grease for the threads. How to do it: well the first thing to realize is that pedals are left-
and right-specific. So you have to make sure
you get the correct one for the correct side. Now if you’re unsure which is which, then pedals like this
often have an L and an R printed on the pedal axle to tell you. Something which can cause confusion is that left and right
pedals have opposite threads. So a right-hand pedal
has a clockwise thread and a left-hand pedal has a reverse thread. The reason for this is to
stop the left pedal unwinding as you pedal along. And a fun fact for you is that this wasn’t an
inspired piece of engineering that came about during the conception of the original bicycle. It was actually a solution to the problem of stopping people’s pedals unwinding as they rode along back in the day. If you’re installing used
pedals onto a used crank, then a good idea is to get that rag that we spoke about earlier and wipe off the old grease
and dirt on both surfaces and apply some fresh grease
before putting it in. This isn’t essential,
but it’s recommended, as it can help stop the pedals
seizing and getting stuck. To install the pedal, simply place the bike
against a wall like this. It’s actually easier to
use it against a wall rather than to put it in
a fancy workshop stand because if you want to
remove pedals as well, you can put more weight into the bike rather than if it’s on a stand. Now what we’re going to
do is rotate the crank arm (arm cranks) into the forwards position. An easy way to remember which direction you will tighten and loosen each pedal, is by putting the crank arm
in this forward position and then thinking about the direction in which you pedal and turn the cranks. So, to pedal, we push down on the crank. We’re going clockwise, which is the same direction to tighten it. To loosen it, we would go upwards, like we were pedaling backwards. So to tighten it, put the pedal in and start like that. If you can start by hand, that’s good, ’cause it means you’re less
likely to strip the threads on the pedal. You don’t want to do that. It should feel nice and smooth. It should just go in nice and easily like that. To tighten it, take this
end of the Allen key, insert it, and then just push down, while pulling up a bit on the pedal. (arm cranks) It doesn’t have to be super, super tight. That’s tight enough. If you’re using a pedal
spanner or a wrench, then it’s just the same as
you would with an Allen key. There’s a little notch
here next to the threads where the spanner can fit in like that. So I’ll move the crank
into the 3:00 position, facing forwards again, put the pedal in, so I start it by hand. I can actually get it on most of the way. And then I’ll finish it to tighten it with the spanner. (upbeat music) Sorted. If you’ve got a really tight pedal and you’re struggling to get it off with the Allen key you’ve got, a hack you can do is to get
a tube or a piece of pipe and put it over the end of your Allen key so that you create a longer lever and generate more leverage and hopefully get it off more easily. (upbeat music) There we go. And that got it. (upbeat music) I hope you found this video
useful and informative. If you have, please give it a thumb’s up. And if you’d like to watch a
video on how pedals are made, you can do it there. And if you’d like to watch one that explains the differences between road-specific pedals and
mountain bike pedals, we’ve got that, too, just down there.

61 comments on “How To Fit & Remove Bike Pedals With Ease

  1. I have always pushed the top of my 15mm wrench for both sides towards the back of the bike to remove and both sides forward to install. Simple to remember.

  2. I don't get the directionality. The right crank is turning clockwise, I agree, but surely the pedal which remains horizontal will be spinning CCW relative to it.

  3. My lbs once tightened new pedals too tight so I couldn't take them off later with normal tools. Later I've seen them fixing it by using a very long L shaped allen key as a lever and hard stomping on it with a foot to make the pedals unstuck, and then unscrewed them normally. Not sure that it's the best way though, looked rather unsafe.

  4. Jesus, there is bike maintenance and there is utter common sense. Even Stevie Wonder could change bike pedals without the need of another bloody GCN video 😏

  5. Your way works but when i trained a new mechanic that was confused about the direction, I would tell them to install the pedals, rotate the turn to the front of the bike.

  6. Idea for next GCN how to video:

    How to like and subscribe to GCN. Oh yeah… and tap the bell icon to get notifications.

  7. Aren't you loosening the pedals by pedaling forwards/cw? If you spin the crank backwards/ccw the pedal tightens and if you spin forwards the pedal is getting loose. Had already a lot of pedals coming loose during setting the gears cause i didn't tighten the pedals properly…

  8. I was working in a bike shop for about one hour, and my guy told me something I have never forgotten: "Back off." In that you move the wrench to BACK of the bike to take them OFF.
    So much easier of an explanation….

  9. The rule I learned: turn the pedal toward the back of the bike to loosen, and toward the front of the bike to tighten. Also, breaking a tight thread on the drive side can be a knuckle buster, so shift your chain onto the big ring to cover your chainring teeth. You can also put a rag over the teeth or wear a good leather or mechanic glove for protection.

  10. It seems like the different thread directions would make the pedals loosen in use rather than tighten. In real life, the opposite is true due to a phenomenon called "mechanical precession". Maybe GCN can do some science and explain it.

  11. Dr. Ollie PHD, simple rules for pedals installation and removal no matter wish side of the bike you are on. Turn on towards the front wheel to install, remove, towards the rear wheel. And the opposite of clockwise is, "anticlockwise!" 😉

  12. Judging by the comments below this might start a riot, but I never know which parts to grease, lube, leave dry, anti-seize, etc. E.g. the locking rings on the cassette. I fitted them dry, and it felt really horrid tightening them up.

  13. Great video, but check out also the awesome "How To Remove Bicycle Pedals – The Easy Way" video by GPLama.
    Btw. did Ollie just nick the crank at 4:00? 😀 I feel you brother, back in the day I would use a thick adjustable wrench and scrape quite a few cranks this way…

  14. Grease is not optional… Grease is the time, is the place, is the motion.
    Grease is the way we are feeling 😉

  15. One my favourite all time tips – To tighten pedals with a pedal wrench, install initially by hand then fit pedal wrench and back pedal until tight. Simples!

  16. Pro tip: when tightening the pedal with any tool, with gloves hold the rear wheel with one hand and tighten with the other. This will dramatically reduce the pressure on your hands when doing this, so if your a cycle mechanic doing this on the daily it will reduce soreness in the hands

  17. if you're a little lacking of power in the upper body, you can also push down the pedal with your foot while pulling up on the wrench with your hand (like pulling up your socks?) you'll get a lot more power into it with minimal effort.

  18. Couple of tips Ollie. Don’t rest a bike by it’s saddle against a rough wall. When tightening the pedal hold the axel still and spin the cranks backwards. Takes a quarter of the time to get it hand tight. I’d use antiseize as lasts longer and is its a non moving part. When torquing the pedal down grab the back brake so you can push down and get a good tight fit without the wheel spinning.

  19. Ollie, How do you use a longer Lee ver to provide more Lev erage? Asked by an American with a perfect accent. 🙂

  20. 2:31 Pedal thread orientation may be trivial to others and despite my various mechanical experience, this always spun my head around. Your explanation cleared it up quite well for me.

    Thank you

  21. First thing to do is find the roughest wall in your area, then proceed to remove your old pedals while rubbing your saddle and bar tape to destruction, then stand back and be proud of yourself 😭

  22. always always put the chain on the large chainring! or you'll have bits of flesh gouged out of your palm should you slip

  23. I think if you can't put enough through the Allen key by hand to loosen, then you'd be very lucky to loosen it with the help of an extension bar, far more likely to round out the end of the pedal.

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