How to Put Rubber Grips on a Bike

Bicycle handlebar gripHandlebar grip installation is one of the easiest bicycle maintenance tasks you can perform. When your old grips get dirty and worn out, or if you have a set of bare handlebars, you can put new rubber grips on your bike in just a few minutes. By using a quick drying lubricant such as hairspray or hand sanitizer, you will assure that your rubber grips stay in place and give you solid handling.


Difficulty: Moderate

How to:

Things You’ll Need:
  • Set of rubber grips
  • Bare handlebars
  • Warm soapy water
  • Shop rag
  • Hairspray or hand sanitizer (for lubrication)
Step 1
Clean your handlebars with warm soapy water. Remove any old adhesive, tape or rubber that may be stuck to them. Thoroughly dry the handlebars with your shop rag. It is important to have a dry surface when installing your grips.
Step 2
Apply a quickly evaporating substance to the interior of the rubber grips, such as hairspray or hand sanitizer. Immediately slide the rubber grips over the handlebar and push into place. It is important to work quickly before the lubricant dries or you will have a difficult time adjusting the grips.
Step 3
Push the grips all the way onto the handlebars and adjust them so their contours are evenly aligned and not twisted.

Tips & Warnings

If you are replacing old grips, you can use a razor blade to cut them off. If you want to keep them intact, you can often "float" them off by forcing compressed air from an air compressor between the grip and the handlebar.
Test the grips to make sure they have a snug fit on your handlebars. If they slide or come off, do not ride your bike until you get them to firmly adhere to your handlebars.


Article Written By Jake Kulju

Jake Kulju is a Minneapolis-based freelance outdoors writer with 10 years' experience. He is an outdoors guidebook author for Avalon Travel and his work is regularly published in "Outdoor Traditions Magazine" and "Naturescape News." His nature-based poetry is published in "Poetry Canada" and "Farmhouse Magazine." Kulju holds an English degree from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota.

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