Difficult to diagnose, I know.

Basically, I bought a single speed Schwinn a few months ago, and after riding it for a couple of weeks it started clicking in the back wheel somewhere.

I've taken it in for a tune-up, mentioned to them there was a clicking sound, but they didn't notice anything (or didn't pay attention), and it still clicks.

It doesn't click, however, if you just pedal it with your hands, but seems to have something to do with putting your weight on it when you're actually riding.

Should I just take it in again? Or is there something cheaper I could look at?

  • What kind of brake do you have on the back?
    – freiheit
    Commented Oct 2, 2010 at 19:02
  • In the second paragraph he says it's a singlespeed.
    – Amos
    Commented Oct 2, 2010 at 19:20
  • @drury, did you find out what was causing the sound? I have two single speed bikes - both less than 10 months old - and from the flipflop hubs on both bikes (I use the freewheels) I hear this clicking/tugboat-like sound on each revolution. I becomes more predominant with increasing pedal pressure. It's pretty annoying and somewhat ruins the otherwise great experience of riding single speed bikes.
    – agibsen
    Commented Dec 27, 2011 at 22:48

3 Answers 3


The problem could be the lubrication on the rear hub. Perhaps it wasn't well greased at the factory. A tune-up should have caught this problem, particularly as you mentioned it. Another possibility is that there is a ball bearing missing from the rear hub, so that once every time the wheel turns around, the axle falls into the small gap created by the missing bearing (this happened on my daughter's new bike after about 3 months of occasional riding).

If the bike is still under warranty, then I would take it in. The problem should have been fixed the first time.

If you want to try fixing it yourself, you will have to take off the rear wheel and disassemble the hub. This isn't hard, but if you've never done it before, try finding a local bike shop that will show you how. Some towns have co-op bike repair shops where for a small fee you can use their tools and there will be a mechanic on hand to guide you. (for example Ottawa - http://www.re-cycles.ca, Waterloo - http://www.theworkingcentre.org/ct/cycles/cycles.html) Try looking at this wiki for a shop near you.


Clicking from the back wheel while pedaling can come from the drivetrain. Specifically, it can come from a "stretched" chain and/or worn rear cogs. The worn parts no longer mesh together correctly and can make a clicking sound while pedaling, particularly when you push hard on the pedals.

For information on measuring chain "stretch," see:

This is more likely to happen on frequently-used or smaller cogs (fewer teeth across which to spread wear).

This doesn't apply to your new bike, but users with older bikes who happen upon this question may find this helpful.


I had a bike making noise only when pedaling up a slight hill. After two visits to Safety Cycles on Western Ave. in Hollywood,CA. It was still making noise. Then it finally broke. On Saturday July 11,2015 I carried the bike home, took it to the shop, and they replaced the part for free because the bike was under warranty. They said they had never seen this before, but that it was a defective freewheel.

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