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lawrencehare 01-28-12 01:03 PM

Expected lifetime of clipless pedals
How long do you folks expect clipless pedals to last? The reason I ask is that I had a pair of Ritchies that I had used on a number of bikes over a ten year period, they were worn but I kept them clean and oiled. One day sometime back, riding along the canal trail here in DC I stopped and the pedal refused to let go. Well - the result is pretty obvious. The bad new was I was falling toward the canal, the good news was there was enough grass and bank to stop me from getting a dunking - and the bike - ow... The good news was that the grassy bank softened the fall - the bad news was there was the stub of a small tree that had recently been cut that pierced my shorts and thigh and about 1/4 inch into my leg.

I fiddled with the pedals and decided that they were simply too worn so I got some SPDs. This was three years back and about 2,500 miles ago. They still work fine but have clear signs of wear - and I would that they did not suddenly refuse to let go for a second time. I liked those Ritchies, they were very precise and crisp.

Any thoughts?


pablosnazzy 01-28-12 01:30 PM

i have been using Look pedals on my road bike for well over 15 years (same pedals, i'm on my third road bike) and i don't see me getting new pedals for a few more years. i've had to get new plastic cleats for my shoes, they were worn out, but the pedals are still awesome.

Machka 01-28-12 05:21 PM

The number of years a pedal lasts probably depends on how much it is used during the year.

I don't think any of my SPDs are in really rough shape yet, and the ones with most use have seen over 30,000 km of cycling.

Nermal 01-28-12 06:08 PM

I was wondering about this myself, and now know mine should last as long as I will.

I was told by the bike ship that I should never, ever, ever try to take them apart for cleaning. He says I would never believe how strong those (SPD) springs are. I do take advice, but you ever look at a red button labeled "Do Not Push Button"? That's how I'm feeling.

DX-MAN 01-28-12 07:27 PM

I have some Time ATAC Aliums that are 5 years old and going strong. Also have a barely-used pair of Shimano 515's that are mechanically good, but don't have near the good feel of the ATAC. One of my kids will likely roll the 515's, as I will have ATAC as long as I can get them.

jaxgtr 01-28-12 09:31 PM

I have been using the Time Aliums for the last 5 years as well. Great pedal. I just upgraded to a Time ATAC Roc S for my new road bike build and moved my old pedals to my MTB.

Jeff Wills 01-28-12 10:57 PM

My first set of Shimano PD-M737 pedals lasted about 12 years (1991-2003) before becoming unrepairable. Maybe 20,000 road miles. I greased the bearings every year or so, and replaced the cleats with every new pair of shoes.

Mobile 155 01-28-12 11:06 PM

Attacks, Crank Brothers egg beaters, and Looks should last about as long as any others will. Not much to go wrong. I have close to 16000 miles on my Speed plays, forth set of Cleats however. Haven't tried Shimano SPDs can't say how they will hold up but I would think they should last as long as the rest.

StephenH 01-28-12 11:19 PM

On my Raleigh Sojourn, it came with 105 pedals, I've had them rebuilt once, bought one new pair, and now have a pair of lower grade on there- so figure 3.5 sets in maybe 20,000 miles, so, 6-8,000 miles?

Mr. Beanz 01-29-12 12:18 AM

Longer than my bike frames!:D..I use spd's, same set, third frame.

First frame, 13,000 miles, second 14,000, this one, maybe 1000,....same pedals no problems.:thumb:

paulkal 01-29-12 12:53 AM

I am using Shimano pd6402 pedals (look style) that I bought in 1992. They are still working fine.
On another bike I use cheap Shimano SPD pedals. When the cleats are worn, I replace the pedals. New pedals are only 5 euro more than new cleats.

Retro Grouch 01-29-12 08:31 AM


Originally Posted by lawrencehare (Post 13779460)
One day sometime back, riding along the canal trail here in DC I stopped and the pedal refused to let go.

Your shoe cleats have a little metal bump that opens the spring mechanism when you twist your foot. Those bumps don't last forever. Sometimes a new $15 pair of cleats will make an old set of pedals work line brand new.

lawrencehare 01-29-12 10:34 AM


Originally Posted by Retro Grouch (Post 13781990)
Your shoe cleats have a little metal bump that opens the spring mechanism when you twist your foot. Those bumps don't last forever.

Thank you - I had not thought of the cleats! I still have the pedals and shall try some new cleats - I like those pedals. I bought the SPDs which have the clipless on one side and regular on the other, thinking I would occasionally ride out with regular shoes.. I think I did it once in three years - and that just to try riding without my regular bike shoes. It turns out I HATE riding without clipless pedals!

Thanks - good info.

Dudelsack 01-29-12 12:04 PM

Yup. Most pedals last "forever", but the cleats don't.

Word to the wise, ie. dumb things cyclists do: I bought a new pair of A520s for my Bacchetta, and dutifully changed out the cleats. When I pulled up to a red light, I discovered I could not clip out, as I hadn't tightened up the cleats that well. I was lucky I didn't get hurt with that stunt.

So when you change out the cleats, I advise a liberal amount of brutaine to the cleat bolts.

TurbineBlade 01-29-12 06:13 PM

They last about 2 months until you put your BMX flatties with pins back on and toss the crank bros. in the closet with the other SPDs.

That's how long mine lasted anyway.

idc 01-30-12 01:39 PM

The first set I ever owned had the right pedal fall apart (literally) after a few years. They were Wellgo SPDs, I think M9s and they came stock on a the first very nice MTB I bought. They weren't really used that harshly but I believe a bolt or screw started coming loose and I never noticed. One day pieces of the pedal just started coming off. I tried to retrieve all the pieces but couldn't put it back together again. Humpty Dumpty.

I have 3 sets of Crank Bros and they're all still in service and doing fine.

Drew Eckhardt 01-30-12 03:36 PM


Originally Posted by lawrencehare (Post 13779460)
How long do you folks expect clipless pedals to last?

My left single-sided SPD style pedals (originally Ultegra road pedals, then Ritchey Road Logics) become unusable after five years because there's not enough metal left in the mechanism to hold the cleat in. Cleats wear out before then.

cyclist2000 01-31-12 10:05 PM

I haven't worn out a pair of pedals in 25 years, I did have a pair of SPD that had a loose axle and needed to be adjusted out of the box. Now a days I buy only the cheaper spd pedals for $35 and haven't had a problem.

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