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I have thought about few questions to ask to the shop keeper before buying a bike.
But would like to know from you experts, a complete set of questions like warranty period? Number of free services offered after sales?...etc.

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  • 2
    Buying a bicycle is more of a physical than a mental thing. Getting the right fit on the right kind of bicycle that you can test ride as long as you need has been the key to my happiness with bicycles.
    – Joe
    May 29, 2013 at 13:25
  • 6
    "Do girls get turned on by this bike?" Jun 3, 2013 at 17:17
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    Shop keepers often will try to rip you off (no offense, personal experience). I had this problem and my first free service from Evans Cycle high street shop after my Jamis 2012 hybrid bike purchase went really bad. They simply checked if the Chain links are okay, but never check the brake tuning, derailleur shift lever jams, etc. I had to go back 2 months later again for several problems and got charged! Warranty, free service details, tyre life, average brake pad lifetime, any free/discounted accessory with your purchase, etc. should be a good list.
    – ha9u63a7
    Jun 5, 2013 at 12:06
  • You are just in time. I am on the way to purchase
    – Freakyuser
    Jun 5, 2013 at 13:35
  • @Freakyuser Yikes! Hope you get a good bike. Let us know what you purchased, and possibly a picture of a shiny new bike :p ?
    – ha9u63a7
    Jun 5, 2013 at 13:48

3 Answers 3

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If you're buying a new bike at a bike shop I'd do the following:

Ask yourself:

  • Do you know what type of riding you plan on doing?
  • Do you plan to race on this bike and/or commute on this bike?
  • Do you prefer a specialized bike or a versatile bike?
  • Do you have a strong preference to disc vs rim brakes?
  • Do you plan to use this with racks / fenders, does it have mounts for those?
  • What is your budget? How flexible are you on it? Is it enough to get the bike you actually want?
  • Does your budget include accessories like a lock / helmet / bottle cages / fenders / racks?
  • How will you lock your bike? (don't use a cable lock if you're parking your bike in the city)

    Ask the shop:

  • Does this bike fit me properly?
  • Does this bike match the style of riding I want to do?
  • How do this bike compare to other bikes made for the same purpose that cost more or less than this model?
  • Can I test ride the bike?
  • Do you offer a tune up with purchase?
  • What essentials should I purchase with this bike?
  • How much does it cost to install accessories at time of purchase?
  • What other maintenance should I have done and at what frequency? How much can I expect to spend on this?
  • What is the warranty period for this bike and it's components?
  • Has your shop checked the wheel tension and truing?

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    • Good list. A good bikeshop should ask you most of the questions from the first list. If they don't ask you many questions, look for another shop.
      – Kibbee
      Jun 3, 2013 at 16:01
    • why shouldn't use cable lock in the city? any specific reason? If not cable lock then what lock?
      – Freakyuser
      Jun 3, 2013 at 18:03
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      A cable lock can be cut in under a minute with tools that are extremely cheap, quiet, and fit in a pocket. I hear of at least one bike a week being stolen that was locked with only a cable which was cut. People assume it's safe if they are only leaving it 'for a few minutes'. Bike theft often takes only seconds.
      – Benzo
      Jun 3, 2013 at 18:09
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      Ulocks or hardened chains are preferred for bikes in urban areas.
      – Benzo
      Jun 3, 2013 at 18:10
    • @Benzo +1 for your solution (I was gonna say D lock same as U lock). ABus assigns ratings on how secure their locks are from level 1 - 12. My personal experience is anything between 6-8 is quite stirdy and secure. I own two abus locks (wire and D) and both are quite good.
      – ha9u63a7
      Jun 5, 2013 at 12:26
    2

    I never really concerned myself with questions to ask a bike shop before buying a bike. Competition in most places is far too keen for a bike shop not to bend over backwards to assist you if you have problems. On the other hand, I do pay close attention to the attitude a LBS takes on letting you test ride bikes. Some shops don't like the idea but allow it. Some encourage you to do so. I'll always take my business to a shop that encourages me to ride the bike as long as I want. The shop should also offer to do a fitting, to make sure the bikes fits you perfectly, after you buy it.

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    • The shop owner says he won't allow me to test ride the bike. He doesn't have display piece also. Is it no-go for me? This is another question that I asked.
      – Freakyuser
      May 29, 2013 at 16:16
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      @Freakyuser - That would be enough for me to look elsewhere, assuming he isn't the only bike reasonably close by. May 29, 2013 at 19:48
    1

    The first thing you'd want to do is test ride a bike, and it doesn't have to be one that you plan to buy. If you're completely new to bicycling, then I'd suggest buying yourself a helmet (I like the MIPS helmets) and then borrowing a friend's bike to test out - this goes for an e-bike/road/mountain/city - anything that's new to you, try to borrow one from a friend for a week or a couple good rides to get a feel for it. This will really help inform you and give you some context for asking the shop questions. It's doing your homework.

    That said, you want to see if the shop will let you test ride the bike you're interested in buying; if supplies are tight, hopefully you can get a ride on a test model or similar model. Ride it for 20 minutes or more. If the shop has a problem with giving out a test ride, then find a different shop. A checklist for buying a new bike:

    • How much will this cost after tax?
    • What sort of assembly and inspection process do you do? (They should have a standard "we check for proper assembly, wheel truing, spoke tension, etc. If there's a problem in the next month, bring it back and we'll make sure it's right.")
    • Can you help check the bike fit? (Should be free.)
    • What's the warranty on the frame, is it the same for the bike components? (Sometimes the frame has a longer warranty.)
    • Do you offer a free annual tune-up? (My local shop does this as a service and to try to sell new stuff.)

    If you're looking to start a new style of riding (commuting, getting groceries, racing), then borrowing a friend's bike for a couple rides will help you sort out if you need any new gear that you don't already have. Have fun!

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