7 upgrades to turn your bike into the ultimate commuter

Practical enhancements for those who get about by bike

If you are thinking of using your bike for daily transport or are simply trying to make it better for that purpose, then this one's for you.

A little cash in the right direction can significantly improve your experience as a commuter rider, and the suggestions below have been chosen to do just that.

Fit mudguards

Mudguards might not look great but you'll soon be glad of them once things get moist
Mudguards might not look great but you'll soon be glad of them once things get moist

Getting soaked sucks and one surefire way of making riding in the rain a lot more pleasant is to do so with mudguards in place.

Full-length guards are the most effective but if your bike isn't ready to accept them then mountain bike-style bolt-on items can work well too.

Check out our buyer's guide to mudguards for further info.

Consider pannier racks/bags

A lot of people choose to commute with a backpack, yet for ultimate comfort and convenience it's best to switch these out for racks and pannier bags.

Waterproof bags from the likes of Ortlieb are designed specifically to keep your clothes and possessions from getting spoiled in the rain.

Roll with tougher tyres

Continental's Contact Plus tyres are known for their impressive puncture resistance
Continental's Contact Plus tyres are known for their impressive puncture resistance

People who ride every day tend to want absolute reliability from their bike and certainly don't want to encounter punctures very often.

One of the best ways to fight against punctures is to fit tougher tyres with plenty of brands now offering reinforced anti-puncture tyres that are designed to shrug off the debris that often leaves more vulnerable tyres deflated.

Schwalbe and Continental both produce a range of tyres for this purpose.

Have a bell at your fingertips

Perfect for alerting pedestrians of your presence, the humble bell can be considered an essential for cycle paths.

Cyclists nowadays are spoilt for choice with everything from simple and affordable designs to exquisite, premium components such as the Spurcycle bell.

Invest in a quality lock

Sadly, investing in a quality lock is more important than ever before
Sadly, investing in a quality lock is more important than ever before

Okay, so this one isn't really an upgrade, but with secure bike parking a luxury that few of us are lucky to have and cycle crime widely reported as being at an all-time high, there's never been a better time to invest in a good lock.

Decent lights

An important part of remaining safe on a bicycle is making sure that you're seen, and we think you should consider running lights in daytime hours to enhance your visibility.

Be sure to check our buyer's guide to road bike lights for some solid recommendations.

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Oli Woodman

Section Editor, UK
With more than 10 years of experience riding mountain bikes, Oli knows the good from the bad when it comes to gear. He's a total bike nerd and loves few things more than fettling with spangly riding bits. Also, he seems to have a talent for crashing hard but emerging unscathed.
  • Discipline: Mountain
  • Preferred Terrain: Loamy singletrack
  • Current Bikes: Marin Pine Mountain, Pinnacle Dolomite
  • Dream Bike: Honda RN01
  • Beer of Choice: Corona
  • Location: Bristol, UK

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