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I bike for work and I've taken a few days off for the holidays. It's been very cold and rainy and Ive tried to keep my bike covered. I hopped on my bike after about a week and a half of disuse, and I began pedaling. With each pedal rotation it seemed like I was going over a small speed bump with my front tire. I tried pedaling faster and slower but the bumping sped and slowed down respectively. Also whenever I used my handbrake I'd smell this weird almost burning smell.

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    Simple, quick check: pick up the front of the bike and spin the front wheel. Watch for the wheel/tire hitting anything, or anything that doesn't look right as the wheel turns - for example, the rim or tire moves in and out or back and forth. – Andrew Henle Jan 3 at 10:44
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    Almost certainly the tire is not properly seated on the rim. The smell is from the tire rubbing the brake pad where it bulges out from the rim. – Daniel R Hicks Jan 3 at 12:51
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Burning smell? Stop riding the bike immediately!

Inspect your bike closely and identify what is rubbing. I'd suspect the brake pads, or possibly a tyre is rubbing on a part of the frame.

Another cause that exacerbates a burning smell is animal urine on the brakes. Leaving your bike outside means it could be used as a toilet target.


Also look closely at your front tyre. Spin the wheel and see if there is a flat spot in the tyre, or if the rim is damaged. Also look for rocks/pebbles stuck in the tread. Check your tyre pressures too - if they're low that won't help.

I wonder if your bike has been out in the super cold for a bit longer than you realise. Even leaving it covered, the bike will deteriorate fast. Consider parking the bike inside a house or garage instead. Under a porch or carport roof is better than out in the open.

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    Another possibility is the tire has developed a bulge from side wall damage. If the brake pads started rubbing the tire sidewall (i.e., burning rubber smell), and the sidewall became compromised, a bulge could have formed resulting in the bumping reported by the OP. – Rider_X Jan 3 at 22:37

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