How to Change Bike Pedals: Here’s Everything You Need to Know

How to Change Bike Pedals
Table of Contents

Don’t have any idea how to change regular, sports or mountain bike pedals correctly? Then you’ve come to the right place.

Here’s a guide to show you how to remove bike pedals and change them. Aside from that, we will also tackle other information that is certain to help you a lot.

We assure you that at the end of this guide you’ll be able to change the bicycle right and left pedals on your own and enjoy mountain biking, roadside riding, etc.

So if you’re ready to learn how to change bike pedals, let’s start this guide by showing you how to take off your bike’s pedals correctly.

Things You Will Need

  • ​Wrench (Allen/hex wrench or pedal wrench)
  • ​New right and left side bike pedals
  • ​Waterproof bike grease

How to Change Bike Pedals?

Part One: How Do You Take Off Bike Pedals?

​Before replacing your bike’s pedals, make sure to check if you need a pedal wrench (works great for basic pedal and clipless pedals too) or Allen wrench or hex wrench. Once you’ve picked the proper wrench, you can now start removing your pedal or clipless pedals.

Step 1. Secure your bicycle on flat ground/surface

Secure your bicycle on flat ground

​If your bicycle has a kickstand, then you can rest your bicycle on it. However, if it does not have a bike stand, you can lean your regular, sports or mountain bike against a table or wall, but make sure it’s in an upright position.

Step 2. Check the Type of Wrench Your Pedals Need

It’s always handy to have easy access of some sort of tools by your side all the time. Tools like allen key, hex key, wrenches and what not can save you many trips to the repair shop. However, you are not going to need any of the allen or hex key, only wrenches will do to change the pedals. There are two common types of wrenches, the Allen, and pedal wrench.

To do this, check the space between the crank arm (where your pedal is connected) and the pedal.

If you detect flats for a wrench to clasp on, you will need to utilize a pedal wrench. However, if you do not notice wrench flats, you will need to inspect for a hexagonal Allen-wrench socket that is located at the end of the axle which attaches the pedal into the crank arm.

If you notice the socket, then you will need to use an Allen wrench.

Note: Most pedals oblige you to utilize both an Allen and a pedal wrench, if you notice wrench flats, you’re still advised to check the axle’s end and see if there is socket there. 

Step 3. Position the wrench on your bike’s right side pedal

Position the wrench on your bike’s right pedal

If you are utilizing an Allen wrench or hex wrench, put the wrench’s hexagonal end to the socket on the end of the axle.

But if you are utilizing a pedal wrench, cover the wrench’s jaws all over the wrench flats between the crank arm and the pedal.

Note: Make sure to start on the pedal on the right side. Also, the direction you’ll need to turn the wrench to loosen the right side pedal spindle is not the same to the left pedal.

Step 4. Loosen your right side pedal by turning the wrench counterclockwise

If you are utilizing a pedal wrench, create a half spin and then raise the wrench out of the flats. Using the handle back up, return the wrench onto the flats so that you’ll be to make another half spin to loosen the pedal spindle.

Continue turning the wrench ‘til the pedal is loosened.

​But, if you’re utilizing an Allen wrench or hex wrench, keep on rotating (counter clockwise) the wrench ‘til the pedal is loosened.

Step 5. Take off the right pedal and store it in a safe place

park tool of road bikes

Once you have loosened the pedals, it should slip out of the hole against the crank arm.

​Even so, if the pedals still look fine, set it aside for future use.

Step 6. In removing the left pedal, you need to turn the wrench clockwise

In removing the left foot pedal you need to repeat steps 4 and 5, but you need to turn the wrench on the pedal clockwise.

The left pedal’s thread is different from the pedal on the right side. Moreover, it retains the other side or the left side pedal from removing as you are driving your road or mountain bike.

​Nevertheless, to remove the left pedal, you can use the Allen or pedal wrench until it is fully loosened. After which, pull the pedal on the left side out and set it aside together with the opposite side or the right pedal.

Part ​Two: How to Install Your New Pedals on Your Bikes

Step 1: Grease the Threads of Both Bike Pedals With Quality Bike Grease

Grease the Threads of Both Bike Pedals

The bike grease will stop the right and left pedals from clutching. Thus you do not have a difficult time removing bike pedals later on.

​Make sure to use enough amount of bike grease to coat the threads thinly.

Step 2: Put The End of the Thread to hooked on the new right pedal into the right hole

New right pedal into the right hole

The pedal that is intended for the right part has a letter “R” on it. On the other hand, make sure not to push the road or mountain bike pedal towards the hole because the threads could be damaged.

Note: Only the end of the pedal should be hidden on the pedal hole.

Step 3: Position the Wrench on the Right Pedal

If you are using an Allen wrench, put the wrench’s hexagonal end over the pedal hole as well as towards the socket on the pedal axle’s end.

If you’re utilizing a pedal wrench, cover the wrench’s jaws around the wrench flats on your new pedal.

Step 4: Tighten the Pedal on the Right

​To do this, turn the wrench clockwise until the bike pedal is fully tightened. However, if you are utilizing a pedal wrench, perform half spins and raise. Before making another spin, make sure to carry the wrench back up to the top.

Step 5: Install the Left Pedal

​Repeat steps 2, 3, and 4 (do this on the left side). Nevertheless, make sure to turn the wrench counterclockwise ‘til the left pedal is tightened.

Step 6: Check If the New Bike Pedals Aren’t Too Loose or Tight

Checking Loose or Tight

When you rotate your new pedals, they should rotate two to three times on their own before they discontinue rotating.

If the pedals do not rotate at all, perhaps they are too tight. But if they turn more than three times, your pedals might be too loose.

​Nevertheless, you can utilize the wrench to fix this issue.

How Do You Tighten Bike Pedals?

To tighten your bike pedals, rotate the left pedal counterclockwise and the pedal on the right side clockwise using a wrench.

When you feel resistance, rotate the pedal approximately 1/8 of a spin to tighten it properly.

However, when you’re tightening your bike pedals makes sure not use too much force as it can lead to trouble of removing the pedals in the future.

What Are The Sizes of Bike Pedal Threads?

Bike Pedal Threads

The majority of bike pedals have 9/16 inches by 20 TPI. Bike pedals for one-piece are usually ½ inches by 20 TPI.

Older French bikes utilized a 14mm by 1.25 mm thread. However, there are fairly rare. On the other hand, a French-threaded pedal is commonly labeled with “G” and “D.”

​Moreover, these pedals will begin to thread to a 9/16 by 20 crank. When it comes to an Aluminum French crank it is rethreaded to 9/16 inches by 20 TPI with ease.

How to Remove Stuck Bike Pedals?

Replacing pedals is not a difficult task. Even so, some problems cause both or one pedal to become stuck.

If your bicycle is old, its pedal may become rusted, as a result, you will have a hard time removing them. The same goes if you put them tightly.

​Fortunately, you can now remove your stuck bike pedals in just a few steps. Nevertheless, here’s how to do it.

Things You Will Need

  • ​Rubber Hammer
  • ​Penetrating oil
  • ​15mm open end or pedal wrench

Step 1. Put a Penetrating Oil

Spray the penetrating oil on the part connected to the crank and wait for about 10 minutes.

​However, some oils work quicker than other, thus following the manufacturer’s instructions is essential. Also, use an oil that is made for loosening bike components.

Step 2: Determine the Direction You Need to Turn

To loosen the right side pedal or drive-side pedal, it should be turned counterclockwise. For the left pedal, you need to turn it clockwise to loosen it.

Step 3: Align Both Pedals

Align the right side pedal in three o’clock position and the left pedal in the nine o’clock position.

After which, put a 15mm open-end wrench or 15mm pedal wrench on your bike’s pedal, press down, and rotate the wrench depending on the thread.

​If you do not have a pedal wrench, you can utilize a hammer to tap the wrench’s bottom. Securing as well as tapping your wrench with a hammer can be a great help in loosening your stuck pedals. That’s it!. You are ready for taking along ride on your bike, mountain biking, and whatnot.


left hand turn mountain bike riding

Most bike owners prefer to take their bikes in the bike shops for repairing every time they want to change their bike’s pedals. On the other hand, some prefer to right bikes with clipless pedals.

But, if you’re a kind of person who doesn’t want to spend too much on such things, then it’s critical that you should know how to change bike pedals properly and have all the proper tools like hex key, wrenches, etc.

If you know how to change your bike pedal​, you will not only save money, but you will also help other people or earn money from it. For instance, if your friend’s bike pedal needs to be changed and he intends to bring it to the repair shop and spend a huge amount why not just tell him/her that you can do it for him/her.

At first, you will find it a bit difficult, but if you have performed this several times, you’ll find it simple and easy.

​Hopefully, you have learned a lot from this content.

About The Author

daniel in queenstown with mountain bike

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