hello! i am new to this forum - i am not a serious rider, just got a bike when i lived in santa monica, ca b/c i loved riding around in my neighborhood and at the beach (on the paths not the sand). i have a trek navigator 100 and moved it out with me to chicago last year. anyway, i haven't used my bike since i moved to here (sadly) and had it sitting outside on a porch - the porch did have a roof, but my bike was still effected by the elements. i know - NOT smart on my part. i finally dealt with it today b/c it was 37 degrees out instead of below 0, and cleaned it as best as i could - the handlebars were slightly rusty but i wiped them off with a sponge and coke and the rust came off (got that tip from this forum!). i also wiped down the rest of the bike but wasn't able to really get in and clean the chains or anything like that. i guess my questions are:
*how damaged do you think my bike is from being exposed to the elements for a year?
*also, i was putting it inside and when i squeezed one of the brakes, it snapped in half!! it doesn't look rusty - could this be b/c it was frozen too many times? is that expensive to repair?
*also, should i just keep my bike inside my tiny apt, OR get a cover that zips up all the way and put it back on the porch? i saw one at brookstone.com that looked decent
clearly i'm not at a pro on this subject so i'd greatly appreciate any help! thanks so much! k