Why Is My Bike Making Popping Sounds? – [Reasons + How to Fix]

Popping sounds are a bane of many cyclists. You shouldn’t worry too much about them, but it is best to know what causes these popping noises and how you can fix the issue with your bike.

If you have had one or two instances where your bike has been making popping sounds after riding for short amounts of time then don’t fret because this article will explain everything that could be causing those pops including why they happen and how to keep them from happening again.

Why is my bike making popping sounds?

Popping sounds can indicate a number of things. They could be the result of improper maintenance, an issue with your frame or wheel, or simply the sign of age and wear. If you’re hearing popping noises consistently on your bike, it might be time to take it in for repair.

Popping noises may also be a sign that you have a flat tire. In some cases, popping noises may simply be the result of age and wear on your bike. If you’re not sure what’s causing the noise, it’s best to get it checked out by a mechanic.

5 Reasons Why Your Bike Making Popping Sounds?

1. Loose chains

One common cause of popping sounds is when the chains are not tight enough. Dirt and grime can build up on the sprockets, which reduces traction between the sprockets and chain links.

When this happens, the bike makes popping noises and could cause the bike chain to slip off. It is important to keep the chains as tight as possible to prevent this from happening.

2. Worn-out parts

If you’re noticing that your bike is making popping sounds, it’s probably because of a worn-out part. These parts are usually made of plastic or aluminum, which wear out faster than steel parts do.

This can cause everything from small cracks to entire sections of the bike to break. If you think your bike may have a problem, be sure to take it in for a check-up.

3. Faulty or broken damper rod

Your bike may be making popping noises. This could be caused by a broken damper rod, which can often occur due to age or wear. If you’re not sure if this is the case, your best bet is to bring your bike in for inspection by an expert mechanic.

4. Faulty shock

If you’re experiencing popping noises from your bike, your shocks may need to be replaced. Shock failures are common and can be caused by a variety of factors, such as:

If you’re experiencing noise when going over bumps, your front shock may be locked out or clunking.

If your front shock is squeaking, you may have it accidentally locked out or clunking. If your front shock is leaking a significant amount of oil, take your bike in for service.

5. Chain Rattling/Grinding Noise

Chain rattling/grinding noise is a result of a poorly adjusted derailleur. This can be a result of the incorrect maintenance, but can also be the result of wear and tear.

When you hear clicking sounds and rattling noises, it’s a sign that the chain is being weakened and stretched more than what’s recommended.

It’s important to check the chain first, but if it doesn’t solve the squeak, you may need to maintain or replace some bearings.

Is it always a bad thing if my bike makes popping sounds?

If the popping noises are only heard while riding, then it’s probably nothing to worry about. If the popping noises are also heard when braking, then there may be a problem with the brakes.

If you can’t find anything wrong that makes sense, then most likely there is nothing wrong at all and the noise will go away on its own after riding around for a while.

Popping noises may be caused by a loose spoke in the wheel or a worn-out brake pad rubbing against the rim. Air trapped in hydraulic brake line may cause popping noises when riding.

What should I do if I hear my bike making popping sounds?

If you hear popping noises coming from your bike while riding, here is a list of what you should do.

1. Clean and Lube your Bike

If you notice your bike making popping sounds, it’s probably time to take some action. Cleaning your bike with warm water and soap will remove any residue from the soap or degreaser.

Make sure that everything is properly dried before applying any lubricant to it. Now you’re ready to ride with ease!

2. Adjust Your Bike Brakes

If you are hearing popping sounds from your bike’s brakes, it may be because they are not adjusted properly.

To adjust brakes properly, take out brake pads from drums and adjust them so that they don’t rub against rims anymore during braking or pedaling motions.

3. Check for Loose Nuts and Bolts

If you hear your bike making popping sounds, there may be loose bolts on the frame or engine.

To check for this, remove all of the body panels from your bike (such as fairings and windshields), then spray some WD-40 on each bolt and nut. Tighten all of them and see if the popping stops.

4. Check Your Bike Chain

If you’re hearing popping sounds coming from your bike, it may just be a coincidence. However, it’s always best to check for play or roughness in the pedal bearings, bottom bracket bearings, chainring bolts, cassette/freewheel / rear sprocket for any play, sprocket, and ring teeth for damage or wear, rear wheel axle for play or roughness.

Additionally, check the chain for stiff links, chain for wear, and elongation with a chain wear gauge.

How can I prevent my bike from making popping sounds?

Riding your bike may cause your bike to make popping sounds. The popping sound may be caused by a worn-out bearing.

If you continue to ride with a worn-out bearing, there’s a chance that it will cause damage to the rest of your bike, including the frame and wheels.

You can fix the popping sound by replacing the bearing.

Can I Keep Riding If Your Bike Makes Popping Sounds?

Yes, you can keep riding your bike if it makes popping sounds. If you hear popping sounds other than one pop per rotation of the pedals and if there’s grinding or squeaking in the headset, bottom bracket, or hubs, you should take your bike to a professional for an inspection.


If you hear a popping sound while riding, it can be very disconcerting. The popping sound may be caused by a worn-out bearing. If your bike keeps making popping sounds, it could be a sign of something serious.

If your bike starts making popping noises while riding, you should stop immediately and check for any visible damage to the tires or wheels. The noise could be caused by something as simple as a loose spoke in the wheel or a worn-out brake pad rubbing against the rim.

Most often, popping noises are caused by air trapped in the hydraulic brake line. If you can’t find anything wrong that makes sense, then most likely there is nothing wrong at all and the noise will go away on its own after riding around for a while.

In case you do have an issue with your bike’s brakes, please consult an experienced mechanic to get it fixed safely and quickly.

Anna Stones