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Bike Tool Buyer’s Guide

Having the right tools is essential for any cyclist, whether you are a weekend warrior, a commuter, or a competitive rider. This guide will help you choose the right tools to keep your bike in top shape and handle most maintenance tasks at home or on the go.

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Multitool 

A multitool combines several functions for quick repairs and adjustments on the go. Look for a multitool that includes hex keys, screwdrivers, and chain tools. Make sure it has a durable construction to withstand frequent use. Also, ensure it is lightweight and compact to fit easily in a saddlebag or pocket.

Top Picks

Crankbrothers M19 Multitool

Topeak Alien II Multitool

Lezyne RAP II 25 CO2

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Pump

A pump is essential for maintaining proper tire pressure, fixing flats, and ensuring a smooth ride. High-volume pumps are great for mountain bikes. For road bikes, many will choose a high-pressure ones, as road tires need to be inflated to higher pressures. It is recommended to choose a sturdy metal pump rather than a plastic one in most cases, as they tend to last longer.

Type

Floor Pumps: These are ideal for home use, offering high pressure and volume with minimal effort.

Mini Pumps: They are portable and perfect for on-the-road or trail repairs. Most cannot achieve the high pressures of floor pumps, especially for road wheels, so itt is recommended to only use this when out riding.

CO2 Inflators: These are quick and compact solutions for emergency tire inflation. It is recommended to choose a mini pump instead of a CO2 inflator, as they cannot be reused.

When using any kind of pump or CO2 inflator, it is important to know the pressure of the tire in order to get optimal performance and for safety reasons. Pumps with pressure gauges are ideal, and if yours does not have one, it is a good idea to get a tire pressure gauge. Note that some tubes use a Presta type valve, while others use a Schrader type valve. Please check this before making a purchase. Though most inflators and pressure gauges accept both valve types. For reference, the majority of modern inner tubes and tubeless valves use the Presta type.

Top Picks

Lezyne Pressure Drive

Topeak JoeBlow Sport III

Pro Bike Tool CO2 Inflato

Torque Wrench

A torque wrench ensures that bolts and nuts are tightened to the manufacturer’s specifications, preventing over-tightening and damage. This is especially important with parts that are carbon fiber as there is a risk of cracking. When choosing a torque wrench, it is recommended to find one that covers the torque range needed for your bike components, typically 2-20Nm for most bike parts. Look for a tool with a calibration certificate to make sure it is precise. Make sure the scale is clear and there is an audible click or visual indicator when the set torque is reached.

Top Picks

Park Tool TW-5.2Pro Bike Tool Adjustable Torque Wrench SetTopeak Nano TorqBar DX

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Pedal Spanner

Pedal Spanners are used to remove and install bike pedals. Longer handles can provide better leverage for stubborn pedals. It is better to choose one with high-quality steel to withstand high torque, as well as an ergonomic handle.

Top Picks

Park Tool PW-4 Professional Pedal Wrench

Pedro’s Pro T/L Handle HexShimano TL-PD63

Chain Breaker Tool

A chain breaker tool allows you to remove and replace links in your bike chain. Ensure it fits your chain type and speed (e.g., 8, 9, 10, 11, 12-speed). Choose one with a solid construction to withstand repeated use and precise alignment guides.

Top Picks

Park Tool CT-3.3 Chain Tool

Topeak Universal Chain Tool

Pedro’s Apprentice Chain Tool

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Bottom Bracket Tool

Bottom Bracket Tools are used to install and remove bottom brackets, a key component of your bike’s drivetrain. Ensure the tool matches the type of bottom bracket you use (e.g., Shimano, SRAM, Campagnolo) and is made from high-strength materials to handle the torque required. Comfortable to hold and easy to use are also worth considering.

Top Picks:

Park Tool BBT-9 Bottom Bracket Tool

Shimano TL-FC32

Pedro’s Pro Socket Tool

Tire Levers

Tire Levers are used to remove and install tires on your bike rims. Make sure that when you choose them, they are strong enough to handle tight tires without breaking. In order to not damage your rims, it is recommended to use plastic ones with a metal core.

Top Picks:

Pedro’s Tire Levers

Park Tool TL-1.2

Lezyne Power Lever XL

Chain Wear Tool

A chain wear tool is used to measure the wear and stretch of your bike chain and to determine when it needs replacing. A chain that is stretched will wear out the cassette and chainrings. Note tha t if a chain is stretched too much because of wear, you may need to replace the cassette. It is recommended to degrease and lubricate your chain often to prolong its service life.

Top Picks:

Park Tool CC-3.2

Topeak Chain Checker

Pedro’s Chain Checker Plus II

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(Source: Park Tool)

Cassette Lockring Remover and Chain Whip

A cassette lockring remover and chain whip are used to remove and install the cassette on your bike’s rear wheel. It is recommended to choose ones with longer handles, as some cassettes may be diffiicult to remove

Top Picks:

Park Tool FR-5.2G and SR-12.2 Chain Whip

Shimano TL-SR23

Pedro’s Cassette Lockring and Chain Whip Kit

Torx Wrenches

Torx wrenches are used for bolts with a star-shaped pattern, which are common on some bike components. A set that includes all common sizes used on bikes. Made sure it is made from hardened steel for long-term use.

Top Picks:

Park Tool TWS-2 Torx Wrench Set

Bondhus Torx Wrench Set

Topeak Torx Wrench Set

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(Source: Park Tool)

Crankarm Removal Tool

Used to remove the crankarms from your bike’s bottom bracket. Ensure the tool fits your crankarm type. Which removal tool you need depends on the specific model. Modern Shimano cranks use the same removal tool. If you are not sure which one you need, please contact the manufacturer or consult a local bike shop.

Top Picks:

Park Tool CCP-22 Crank Puller

Shimano TL-FC16

Pedro’s Pro Crank Remover

Bike Stand

A bike stand holds your bike in place for maintenance and repairs. It allows you to elevate your bike allowing you to spin the pedals and drivetrain as well as provides easy access to other parts of the bike. Many bike stands are foldable and portable. They can be easily adjusted to fit different bikes and often come with a part that can hold your tools in place.

Top Picks:

Park Tool PCS-10.3 Home Mechanic Repair Stand

Feedback Sports Pro Elite Repair Stand

Topeak PrepStand Max

Standard and Phillips Screwdrivers

Used for various screws on your bike, Phillips screwdrivers are a necessary tool for bike maintenance. It is recommended to find one with a large, comfortable handle that allow you to twist screws with more torque. It is important to be careful using Phillips head screwdrivers as compaged to others like Torx wrenches, as they can more easily strip the screws. Having thhese screwdrivers in multiple sizes is recommended.

Top Picks:

Park Tool SD-SET Screwdriver Set

Wiha Screwdriver Set

Wera Kraftform Plus 334/6 Set

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Tire Patch Kit:

Used to repair punctured inner tubes on the go, tire patch kits are vital for when out riding. There are two primary types. The classic type comes with glue and a patch, while some newer ones use a self adhesive patch. While self-adhesive patches are simpler and more convenient to use, they are not as strong. The classic type, if sealed properly, can be left on the tire tube which will not need to be replaced.

Top Picks:

Park Tool GP-2 Super Patch Kit

Rema Tip Top TT02 Touring Repair Kit

Vibrelli Mini Glueless Bike Tire Repair Kit

Wirecutter

Used for cutting brake and gear cables cleanly with precision cutting edges for clean cuts, a wire cutter is essential for making your bike feel like new again.

Top Picks:

Park Tool CN-10 Cable and Housing Cutter

Pedro’s Cable Cutter

Topeak Cable and Housing Cutter

Conclusion

Investing in quality bike tools can save you time and money in the long run. Look for tools that offer durability, precision, and compatibility with your bike components. With the right tools, you can handle most maintenance tasks at home and keep your bike in top condition.