Bike Maintenance Books


Bike Maintenance Book Review Criteria

There are many bike maintenance books available.  You could buy a copy of ever single one of them for your collection but that would probably be a waste of money since one is probably all you need.  Most books cover all of the basic repairs so that makes it difficult to say which bike maintenance book is better than them all.  There are a few books that break out road bikes and mountain bikes (Zinn’s books do this) but, for the most part, they’re all about the same as far as content goes.  So what criteria can we use to review the books?  We chose to compare them not only against each other but also against their competition – websites and videos.  We felt that if a book, in today’s tech flooded world, could provide some level of value above the bike maintenance videos that proliferate YouTube or the never-ending list of bike repair websites then it deserved a shout out here.

Why choose a book?

A book is portable.  A book is tangible.  If you set a book next to you while you make your repairs, the screen won’t go dark and you don’t have to touch the screen to scroll up or down (which would make an awful mess!).  Plus most books walk you through the repair process step by step with pictures and tips.  That’s not to say that a website or video doesn’t do the same thing but sometimes a book is just better.

What Should a Bike Maintenance Book Cover?

A bike maintenance book should cover all the basic repairs you can do for your bike.  Most of the good ones will include some type of maintenance schedule so you can easily know which repairs, replacements and overhauls you need to do based on the date or number of miles you’ve ridden.  Almost every maintenance book out there does this so this is somewhat of a moot point.  But what are some of the things that it should cover that you wouldn’t expect?  What about upgrades?  If you want to upgrade your Shimano Tiagra groupset to Ultegra or even SRAM Red, what do you have to change to do this?  There are a few books that cover this (Ultimate Guide to Bicycle Maintenance and Upgrades by Guy Andrews and Stuart Clapp is one of them).

The Best Books Have Photos!

We think it goes without saying that any good “How-to Book” needs to have detailed steps accompanied by LOTS of great photos.  If the books we reviewed didn’t have good photos then we didn’t even review them in some cases.  Not only to the photos have to be high quality, they have to be of the right part and current.  We found some books that had good photos but the part they were using for the tutorial/example was 8 years old!  The parts have to be current which means that the book should have a few editions or printings.

There are a couple books that have great photos but they also have links to additional resources, videos and better photos online… this is a great concept and when this combo punch is used it has great results.

Which Bike Repair Books Top Our List?

As we said before, there are many books out there that discuss various aspects of bike maintenance and repair.  We have listed the top 10 below.  To see the full list of book reviews please check out our Bike Maintenance Book Rankings.  If we’re missing any that you feel should be added to the list please leave a comment below any of the reviews and let us know!



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