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I use cheap flat pedals, aluminum or plastic. They lasts about a year (1K-2K kms) before dying (cracking noises at each stroke).

I don't mind paying US$10 each year, but it hurts my eco-heart: I want to recicle, to repair and not pollute the Earth.

How long should pedals last? Do serviceable pedals last longer? May I try to repair non-serviceable ones?

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Buy better pedals. Even as little as $30 can make a difference. They will cost more up-front but will last 5-10 times as long. Also, they will be more efficient, and make your ride (slightly) easier. – Kibbee Oct 3 '13 at 20:54
Anywhere from 20 weeks to 20 years. I've had fairly expensive pedals go south after only a few months, while others have lasted 5-10 years. If possible get serviceable pedals -- the "non-serviceable" ones may be possible to repair, but it would be iffy. Avoid anything with a plastic body. – Daniel R Hicks Oct 3 '13 at 22:48
up vote 2 down vote accepted

I used to have the same problem. My pedals would last about 2000 miles, then the inner bearing would fail, which is what makes the cracking noises you refer to.

I finally raised the devil with my Trek dealer about the cheap parts he was selling me, and he came up with a set of pedals made by VP Components.

There are 2 differences between these pedals and the ones I was using. First, the inner bearing on this pedal is a brass bushing, not a ball bearing. Second, this pedal has a dirt/water seal to protect the inner bearing.

I have been using these for at least 15,000 miles now, and they are still as good as new, and they didn't cost any more than the cheap pedals.

If you buy a new pedal, turn the pedal's axel. It should turn with perfect smoothness. If you feel any sort of catching, it is using very cheap ball bearings, and it isn't worth installing on your bike.

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Increase your budget until you can afford second hand pedals with cup-and-cone bearings, then spend a few bucks servicing them.

DMR's V8 and V12 models are very popular and have been the same for years. The V12 typically has better seals and lighter materials than the V8, but both are serviceable.

Here's a guide on servicing the DMR V8:

I got Wellgo's V8 clones via eBay for 7GBP delivered (about 10USD?). I don't know if they're the same internally but they might be an option if you cant get pre-loved DMRs.

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Money is not the issue here :-). Cheap pedals is all we get here, in my little town far from Santiago. Anything fancy means 3 hours traveling to big city and more money spent in gas, tolls, parking & food than in the bike store. While web-shopping is possible, unless you know what you want, you will not found it in the poorly made web sites most stores have (if any). – user5369 Oct 4 '13 at 12:18

If they're not made very well and/or you expose them to harsh weather or dirt they could be destroyed the first time you ride them.

Properly made pedals that are looked after should last longer than the bike they're attached to.

If you buy good ones and keep them properly greased/etc they should never need replacing.

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Buy better pedals. I bought a kind of hybrid - clipless on one side, platform on the other, fully metal - and they've lasted me 4300 km this year with no visible damage other than some scratches. Judging by their state, I think they'll last me at least 2-3 more years of intense use. And they cost the equivalent of $50 dollars, which really isn't that much if you think about it.

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