If you have a thriving studio, you know your bikes take a real beating. 100 to 300 pound cyclists pound on them, sweat on them and rock them 3 to 7 times a day in a hot moist environment. With that kind of treatment, maintenance and TLC is a necessity…..and a cost. Some of this maintenance can be done by the studio owner with some basic tools and a regular time commitment — but unless you are hugely handy (and trained), a good portion of your maintenance will be outsourced to a professional in your area.
Maintenance needs evolve and increase as your bikes age, but our experience has been that well-maintained bikes can last 3 to 5 years or more if they are properly maintained. There is also a reasonably good re-sale market for used bikes making it a little less expensive to upgrade to new equipment when your lease expires. We have had good success selling old bikes on Craig’s List, or directly to our customers (though you may want to limit those sales if you think it will keep someone in their basement and out of your studio!). Often the reason for moving your bikes on is because you want the nice new model…..and maintenance costs are starting to creep up.
I would love to hear how other people deal with the maintenance issue, I feel like your cost is based on a few factors:
- What type of bikes you have (some break down more than others, some are more expensive to fix)
- How often they are ridden (the more full classes, the more maintenance is needed)
- How much “day to day” maintenance you do (the more the better)
- How often you have them professionally maintained (regular visits? or only when the totally break down?)
- What your tolerance is for noise and vibration (if you and your customers don’t mind the squeaks, you can cut down on maintenance)
- How many bikes you have (the higher the number, the lower cost per bike since repair guy is there already)
One sample studio’s 2- year experience (basic cleaning and lube done by owner)
40 bikes / Schwinn Evolutions
Average 22 classes per week
Total bike repair costs: $4450
Cost-per-bike: $56 per year
If you have a similar example from your own studio, or thoughts on maintenance, please share them with comments here! Thanks.