Thursday, December 6, 2007

Q&A: Pedal Noise

Hello Jim,
Was going thru your page on bike noises and here is one for your
advice & time. I have been riding my Olmo road bike with Look PP206 pedals.
On a ride last Friday I noticed a loud click under my cleats and could also
feel it. I took my bike to the bike shop here in Muscat. Unfortunately they
could not figure it out. I was wondering if you could be kind to put a light
on it. I adjusted the release of the right pedal and also tightened it, but
my guess is that a bearing in the pedal has caused this unless you think
differently. Appreciate your time & advice.


Hi, Brian,
Have you checked the bolts holding the cleats to the bottom of your shoes,
or did the bike shop check this? My experience is that the noises are often
caused by cleat problems rather than pedal problems. So, that's what I'd
check first. Next I'd check to make sure that the cleats aren't worn out.
They need to have enough material to hold in the "jaws" on the pedal. Even a
little walking wears Look cleats out fast. I use Kool Covers, which are
rubber covers you slip over your cleats anytime you have to walk at all. I
just carry them in my jersey pocket. They work great to save the cleats and
help you not slip on slippery floors, too.

If the cleats are worn you should replace them. They don't cost much. Just
be sure to trace a line around your old cleats first so you know exactly
where to place the new ones.

If your cleats are in good shape, then I would check the pedals for
something loose. If you adjust the tension too loose the back plate on the
pedal can move too much and that might cause a click noise under pedal
pressure. Tightening the tension adjustment a little should stop that.
Usually, the bearings in these pedals do not wear out very quickly so I
wouldn't expect that to be the problem, though you can certainly remove the
pedals and spin the axle by hand to feel for roughness, grit and noise, if
you want. If that's an issue you'll want to clean and regrease the pedal
bearings or perhaps install a new bearing kit. But, typically these will
last for many years without service so I don't think that will be the

Hope one of these ideas solves the problem,

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