How to Remove Bike Pedals: It Is Easier Than You Think

They may not be as large as the frame and wheels, but the pedals are some of the most important parts of a bike. They are the ones that propel movement. Any problem with the pedal will affect the movement of the bike. That said, it is important that you know how to remove bike pedals like a pro.

When it is time to change bicycle pedals, most of you will probably instantly think of heading to a neighborhood mechanic who can do the job for you. While it sounds convenient, this is an unnecessary expense. With a bit of time and effort, you can do it on your own. If you are clueless, keep on reading and learn from the insights we’ll be sharing in this short guide.

A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Remove Bike Pedals

If your pedals are no longer working the way they should or if it looks like they need cleaning to restore performance, you need to know the proper way of taking off bike pedals. Here’s how to do it easily.

1.      Gather the Necessary Tools

Like in any other DIY task, removing bike pedals will require the right tools. Luckily, you will not need any special tool to accomplish the job. Most of the tools needed are probably already available in your garage or workshop.

Among others, the bike pedal wrench to use is one of the most important considerations. The space between the crank arm and the pedal will help you determine the right wrench to use. If you see a flat surface where a spanner can grip, then you will need to use a pedal spanner wrench. On the other hand, if there is a hexagonal socket, then you will most likely need an Allen-key wrench.

2.      Position the Bike Properly

Once you have all the tools needed, choose the right location and arrange the bike in its proper position so that you can work properly. Look for a well-lit and ventilated area. It should also have a flat surface. As you position the bike on the floor, make sure as well that you shift the chain to the big ring, which will protect your knuckles as you work.

3.      Remove the Right Pedal

Position the wrench on the right pedal. Use your dominant hand for holding the wrench. Your non-dominant hand, meanwhile, should be holding the right pedal, preventing it from moving during the procedure.

Whether the movement is clockwise or counterclockwise to loosen the pedal will depend on its position. For the right pedal, you will need to rotate the wrench counterclockwise. Push the spindle hard and once the pedal is loosened, remove it from the bike. Add more force if it is stuck. If the pedal has not been cleaned for a long time, dirt and debris will be stuck, making the removal a bit tricky.

4.      Remove the Left Pedal

The process is basically the same as the removal of the right pedal. The main difference is that this time, you will need to rotate the wrench clockwise to loosen the pedal. This is applicable only if you are using a spanner wrench. If you are using an Allen wrench, then you will need to turn it counterclockwise.

How to Change Bike Pedals Like a Pro

After the removal, your next concern would be installing bicycle pedals. Doing it right is important to maximize movements, making sure that every turn will propel the bike. Here’s a quick look at how you can do this.

1.      Look for the Stamped Marks

Before anything else, look at the stamped marks on the pedals, which will determine where they will be positioned. Most will have letters L or R to easily identify which one is on the right and which one is on the left. When there are no marks, look at the pedal thread direction. If the thread is going up to the right, this means that it is the right pedal. When it is up to the left, on the other hand, it is the left pedal.

2.      Grease the Spindle

Before installing the new pedals, add grease to the hole or spindle. This prevents seizing, which will make it easier to pull the pedal when the time comes that you want to remove it. Otherwise, it will get stuck and will require a significant effort for removal. Coat the threads thinly with a high-quality water-based grease.

3.      Insert the Pedals

Now that they are greased, it is time to position the pedals. Like with the removal, you will need the right kind of wrench for threading the pedals, making sure that the connection is tight. Rotate the wrench clockwise or counterclockwise to tighten, depending on the type of the wrench you are using or the direction at which you are threading.

4.      Check the Pedals

You are almost done at this point, but do not forget to check the pedals, making sure that they are working properly. Pull it gently or give it a quick wiggle to be sure that it has a snug fit. If they do not feel that they fit tightly, adjust the position until you think they are secure enough.

Care and Maintenance of Bike Pedals

The main reason why most people need to remove old and install new pedals is because they are damaged. To prevent this from happening, pay attention to proper care and maintenance. Below is a list of some of the things you need to do:

  • Clean the pedals immediately after using them in muddy or dirty trails. The longer the dirt is stuck on the pedals, or even on the other parts of the bike, the more difficult it is to remove.
  • Install your bike properly. As much as possible, keep it indoors. Exposure to dust, rain, and snow, among other external factors, will speed up wear not only of the pedals but of the bike in general.
  • Lubricate the pedals as needed, especially the threads. If you notice that they are frequently getting stuck, it might need a little lubrication. Doing so will make it move smoother so that you can pedal efficiently.
  • Check the fasteners of the pedals, making sure to tighten or loosen them as needed. If there are missing fasteners, replace them. The same thing holds true when there are bent or damaged springs that will prevent the pedals from working properly.
  • Inspect for visual damages, such as rust, corrosion, and cracks. As soon as you see a problem, remedy it immediately. Once it worsens, it will be harder to deal with the issue, and in some cases, you have no option but to remove bike pedals and purchase new ones.


In this article, we did not just talk about how to change pedals on a bike, but we also discussed the basics of changing bike pedals above. As noted above, they are pretty straightforward tasks. You will need a few tools and have to spare a few minutes. The good thing is there’s no longer a need to run to a mechanic and pay for such a service! It is an easy DIY task that almost anyone can handle.