How to Remove the Pedals on a Bicycle

How to Remove the Pedals on a Bicycle
Bicycle components wear down over time. Used for long enough, moving parts such as bearings, pedals, chains, derailleurs and axles will eventually require replacement. Because of their heavy use and weight-bearing significance, pedals wear out most often. Pedals are easily removed and replaced. All you need is a single tool and knowledge about the way pedals work.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Removing Bike Pedals

Things You’ll Need:
  • Wrench Lubricant (optional)
  • Wrench
  • Lubricant (optional)
Step 1
Examine your pedals for rust and corrosion. You can apply a bit of lubricant, such as WD-40, at the point where the pedal meets the crank arm to help loosen the pedal, but this is not required.
Step 2
Select a wrench for removing the pedals. You can use a specialized bike-pedal wrench available at cycle shops, an open-ended spanner or a crescent wrench -- also known as an adjustable spanner -- to remove your pedals.
Step 3
Start with the drive pedal -- the pedal on the side with the derailleur -- and unscrew it first. Locate the "nut" or connector that attaches the pedal to the crank arm. Many times, this connector will have flattened spots specifically for affixing the wrench. Affix the wrench, and turn the nut counter-clockwise until the pedal comes off.
Step 4
Locate the nut or connector on the other pedal. Grasp the pedal firmly, and use the wrench to turn the nut clockwise to remove the pedal. (The non-drive pedal has reverse threads, which means turning counter-clockwise will tighten the pedal, while turning clockwise will remove it.)
Step 5
Save all the components of your pedals, including the pedals themselves. These can be used as spare parts in the future.

Tips & Warnings

Liquid Wrench may be applied for especially hard-to-loosen pedals. Simply apply it where the pedal meets the crank arm and let it sit for 10 to 20 minutes.
Never stand on the pedal when loosening it. This can damage the nut and threads.

Article Written By Justin Chen

Justin Chen is a freelance writer and photographer with 6 years of professional experience in outdoor activities, extreme sports, travel and marketing topics. His professional work experience includes publication with KOMO 4 News Seattle, Fisher Interactive Network, and Demand Studios. He is a current Pre-Med student at Walla Walla University.

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