I'm currently using a 5 year-old Giant Escape R3 (2015)(https://www.giant.co.jp/giant15/bike_datail.php?p_id=00000060) hybrid bike that I bought used (down to $400 from $500 retail price) from a bike shop at almost-new condition (I suspect it was a display/trial model). Thus far I've replaced most of the cables once or twice, cable housing and chain once, and have replaced 2 broken drive-side spokes from the rear wheel (trued by eye). I've also swapped out the mostly bald stock Maxxis Detonator tires with a pair of Schwalbe Marthon GreenGuards. Before then I've had to patch up at least 3 rear tire punctures and am still using all-stock tubes since they still seem to hold air just as well. I'm not religious about cleaning, but I do general maintenance every couple of months particularly after the rainy seasons.
At this point I'm wondering if the following "upgrades" would be worth it:
- Wheels: Swap stock Spinforce (no, not really) Lites to an entry-level Shimano set like the RS100 ($100). They're the same price as the R501's but I prefer the simpler look (11S spacers also come free).
- Inner tubes: Swap patched up brandless inner tubes for something fresher like a pair of Panaracer RAir's (2x$11). Do these butyl/latex hybrids hold air for long?
- BB: Replace questionable VP BC73 with a Shimano BB-UN55 ($19). I do get the occasional clicking/knocking feel when pedalling really hard uphill, but don't notice any play when wiggling by hand.
- Crankset: Replace stock Prowheel 48-38-28 crank for a similar spec Shimano Acera M361 ($44).
That's as far as the more reasonable changes go. However, I'm also wondering if it would be nice to actually upgrade the groupset ever so slightly (newer Altus, Acera, Alivio mix). Like changing to a 9-speed cassette and replacing the old Altus EF51 shifters with something that doesn't wreck shifter cables. Note that the rear derailleur is also pretty banged up after a few rainy day crashes, but still works mostly fine.
I do eventually plan on buying a higher-end road bike for long trips and commuting, but will retain this one for grocery runs and whatnot. Though this will definitely still be my commuter for at least the rest of the year. Already picked out a pannier rack and some new grips with bar ends.
Any advice or recommendations are appreciated!