Essential Bike Tools Guide
This guide is dedicated to helping riders find the tools they need to keep their bikes running smoothly. But not every rider needs every tool. How often you ride and how much you like to work on your bike will dictate what tools you should have in your garage.
We've broken everything down into:
- 7 essentials bike tools that every rider needs
- 15 bike tools for beginner home mechanics
- 13 bike tools for advanced home mechanics
- Different categories of tools and maintenance equipment
- Best bike tool brands
- Bike tool FAQs
Keep scrolling to get started, or head straight to our catalog to shop all our bike tools.
7 Must Have Bike Tools For Every Rider
Whether you just bought your first bike or you ride every day, here are the 7 essential bike tools that every rider should own.
- Multi tool: A good multi tool can help you perform lots of basic adjustments. They typically have screwdrivers and the most common allen keys you’ll need.
- Tire levers: You’ll need one or two of these to take off your tire in the event of a flat.
- Tube: Make sure to have at least one spare tube that fits your tire.
- Pump: Floor pumps with a gauge are ideal, but it’s also good to have a portable hand pump you can bring with you on a ride.
- Chain lube: Using chain lube regularly keeps your shifting smooth and makes your chain last longer.
- Allen key set: Your multi tool may not have all the sizes you need, so pick up a simple allen key set.
- Combination wrench set: Nuts and bolts for racks and accessories often require combination wrenches.
15 Bike Tools For Beginner Home Mechanics
You don’t have to be a bike expert to do most common repairs and maintenance work. If you want to save yourself a trip to the bike shop you should consider picking up a repair stand and a tool kit. Beginner home mechanics should own all 9 essential tools listed above as well as the following:
- Bike tool kit: If you really want to start doing repair work, investing in a curated bike tool kit is a great way to get all the tools you need in a convenient and organized package.
- Bike stand: Bike stands make doing maintenance so much easier. Trust us, once you have one you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.
- Pedal wrench: So you can take your pedals off.
- Spoke wrench: Tightens or loosen spokes for a true and tough wheel.
- Torx wrench: The T25 is the most common and widely used size, and is used by most rotor bolts.
- Grease: Don’t forget this critical component of good bike maintenance.
- Chain breaker: So you can shorten a new chain to fit perfectly.
- Chain checker: Chain checkers tell you if a chain is worn out and needs to be replaced.
- Chain cleaner tool: This tool thoroughly cleans your chain and improves its lifespan and performance.
- Cable cutters: Use cable cutters to trim new shifter cables, brake cables, and housing.
- Master link pliers: Easily clip and unclip your chain’s master link with these pliers.
- Needle nose pliers: Every mechanic needs a set of needle nose pliers.
- Tubeless sealant: If you’re running tubeless tires, having extra sealant is a must.
- Valve core tool: Take out your valve core to replace it or to add tubeless sealant.
- Shock pump: Keep your suspension at the appropriate air pressure.
13 Bike Tools For Advanced Home Mechanics
Advanced home mechanics are able to perform almost any service or repair. There are hundred of tools for working on the many different kinds of bikes from different eras, but if you’re looking to really hone your mechanic skills, you’ll want to invest in the following key tools:
- Advanced bike tool kit: If you’re ready to take the leap towards being an advanced home mechanic, the best way to get everything you need is by investing in a pro tool kit.
- Professional bike stand: While a simple bike stand may get the job done, pro models are more easily adjustable and come with the capacity to carry additional tools and parts.
- Truing stand: Whether you’re building a wheel from scratch or you need to fix your rim after a crash, having a truing stand is an important piece in every pro’s shop.
- Tension meter: Measures spoke tension so you can build and maintain super durable wheels.
- Brake bleed kit: Bleed your own hydraulic brakes right at home with this kit.
- Torque wrench: Accurately measure force in Nm for tightening bolts the appropriate amount on sensitive objects like stem bolts.
- Cone wrench set: Adjust and service your bike’s hubs with these helpful tools.
- Cassette tool: New cassettes are inevitable and having a cassette tool will save you a trip to the bike shop for a simple task.
- Chain whip: Hold your cassette steady while you use the cassette tool to loosen the lock ring.
- Bottom bracket tool: Replace or adjust your bottom bracket with one of the many bottom bracket tools.
- Headset press: Install a new threadless headset with this helpful tool.
- Star nut setter: Setting the star nut is a crucial part of any bike build and this tool helps you do it right.
- Hacksaw: If you need to trim the length of your handlebars or seatpost for the perfect fit.
How to wash your bike
Why you should wash your bike:
It may not be the most glamorous job, but washing your bike after a muddy ride is one of the best ways extend the life of your components. Check out these three ways to wash your bike so that you can keep rolling.
Good way to wash your bike:
Use a bit of dishwasher soap, warm water, and a rag for a cheap way to get the job done. You can use a hose to spray the gunk off.
Better way to wash your bike:
Companies like Muc-Off make specially designed bike wash products so you can easily and effectively get your ride clean. Pick up some real bike wash and and cleaning equipment for a more bike-friendly more enjoyable cleaning process.
Best way to wash your bike:
If you really want to go pro, check out the ultimate bike cleaning solution, the Muc-Off Pressure Wash Bicycle Bundle. We've sold a bunch of them, and our customers love this package because it comes with all the cleaners and tools you need for a deep clean, including the incredible bike-friendly pressure washer. This pressure washer is simple to use, blasts off grime super quickly, won't harm your components like industrial ones, and it helps you keep your hands dry after cold, muddy days.
Best Bike Tool & Maintenance Brands
Bike Tool FAQs
What tools are needed for cycling?
The tools you need depend on the job and your skill level. We’ve listed out lots of tools for the absolute beginner, the aspiring home mechanic, and the advanced home mechanic. Read the guide and see which you align most with and check out the common tools.
How do you wash your bike?
The best way to clean your bike is with warm, soapy water and a hose. Pressure washers can be too powerful for some delicate parts, but an old fashioned scrub and rinse works wonders. Use a chain cleaner tool for the chain and a rag or a sponge for everything else.
What lube should I use on my bike chain?
Get a lube that matches your environment. There are many different kinds, but the most important thing to decide on is whether to buy wet or dry lube. Dry lube is good for dry dusty environments, and Wet form damp rainy conditions. Here in Toronto during the spring or fall a wet lube lasts longer and improves chain lifespan. Then during the summer when it's hot and dry switch to a Dry lube that will pickup less dust and stay cleaner longer.
What tools do I need to build a bike?
If you’re considering building a bike, you’ll need at least 4, 5, and 6mm Allen Keys, a Pedal wrench, a Philips screwdriver, and a Pump. If you'd like to build and maintain your bike, explore the lists above for everything you'll need in more detail.