Top 5 Best Affordable Road Bikes Under 500 Dollars
- 1.1 Things To Consider Before Buying
- 1.2 Should Go For The Electrical Or The Mechanical Ones?
- 1.3 Why Should You Buy Road Bikes?
- 1.4 Road Bike Maintenance Tips
- 2 Top 5 Best Affordable Road Bikes Under $500
- 3 Conclusion
Top 5 Best Affordable Road Bikes Under 500 Dollars
If you are looking for the road bikes, then this is just the perfect time for you. At present, the bike manufacturers will offer you with a lot of road bike options and gears. The best part is the component companies are offering top-notch wheels, shifting, and brakes.
Now, in such conditions, if you just weave through the online bike stores or the retail bike stores, you will be overwhelmed. This is why we will offer you the top 5 affordable road bikes under $500 which are good quality and great to use. A road bike can be for different purposes, for instance, you can use it for recreational purpose, long distance adventure tours and travels, racing or any other short trips.
Now, if you are looking for a racing bike, then you have to opt for the lightweight ones. Because a heavier bike is good for commuting, but the racks and mounts prevent it from performing in races. On the other hand, the heavier bikes can be very good transports.
The purpose is really important to make sure what kind of bike you should buy. If this is your first time as a bike buyer, then it is a good idea to buy a bike within $500. Since you have a budget in place we will help you in doing your research to have a great bike within $500. So what are the things you need to consider before buying a road bike?
Things To Consider Before Buying
Now, this is the first and foremost thing you need to consider while buying a bike. This is the heart of the bike and this is where the majority of the budget will go. The most common materials for frames are steel, aluminum, titanium and also carbon fiber. Aluminum is mostly used in road bikes.
It is not very much expensive and it is also a great material for making the bikes. From aluminum, one can develop stiff and light frames. The aluminum frames come with varied thickness and offer better comfort. You can also check out the steel frame. These are a bit more on the expensive side. Most of the custom bikes are made of steel. It is a good choice if you are looking bikes for touring purpose. It is a little bit heavy than aluminum bikes but it is very much comfortable.
A lot of road bikes are also made from Titanium. This is one of the most exotic materials for road bikes. The specialty of this material is it can be as durable as steel and also as lightweight as aluminum. The cherry on top is the corrosion resistance feature.
But the downside of this material is it is very much expensive. Though gradually it is becoming affordable these days. Finally, Carbon-fiber; it is the most expensive frame material available but it is very much customizable. The designers can easily manipulate the material to create low weight, stiffness, and comfortable material.
Selecting the right size
Getting the right size is very important for your bike. It is good to take advice from the shop, but don’t choose too large or too small bikes just because you are getting it in your budget. You will get the most of your bike ride if that bike is comfortable for you to sit and ride for a long period of time.
Most of the road bikes come in centimeter sizes, but the frame measurement varies according to the manufacturers. You have to look at the size chart on the website of the manufacturer before you make a final purchase. The basic rule is, you should be able to stand over the frame along with a few centimeters space.
You will have to choose whether you want disc brakes and traditional rim brakes for your bikes. If you choose the rim brakes, then know that these brakes are lighter and much more aerodynamic.
On the other hand, the disc brakes will offer you with a better power and modulation. These brakes are less affected by bad weather conditions and these carry on working for a long period. So the disc brakes are preferable if you want a road bike that you have to use for the whole year.
This is the next important area of your bikes. The wheels are going to influence your bikes very much. If you opt for the lighter wheels along with a less rotating mass the bike will get faster spin up time. The lighter and faster tyres offer a better response. Remember, it will be a bit expensive to replace the wheels and upgrade it. The 23mm tyres were previously the standard tyres, but nowadays, the pro-riders use the 26mm tyres.
The Right Fit
There are different parts of the bike that you might have to adjust. The height and the fore-after position of the saddle, the raising or lowering of handlebars, the stems, the grips and so many more things. Now, depending on your needs, you have to buy the bikes.
If you are using a road bike, then you are staying in the same position and just paddling. On the other hand, if you are buying a mountain bike, then you will move around different bumpy places. So if the saddle is not comfortable, it can become a reason for pains and injuries.
The Bike Components
The bike manufacturers assemble different parts into group sets, they make a collection of brakes and the gear parts along with the matched function and quality. Every bike manufacturer has their signature steps and features, their shifts, switches on brake levers and motors in derailleurs vary. Some of the manufacturers even offer electronic shifts these days.
The chain sets will come with the chain rings of different sizes. For an entry level bike, you can use the double compact chain set. There are 50 and 34 tooth chainring which offer low ratios and this is why these bikes are suitable for the hills. For the normal road bikes, you can opt for the standard double chain set. These come with a larger pair of chainrings and it is also suitable if you want to ride at high speed. These chains are good for both normal and speed biking as well.
Should Go For The Electrical Or The Mechanical Ones?
Now, this is a bit of complicated question. You have to decide the type of bike you want according to your comfort and necessity. The bicycle derailleur was actually developed in the 1800s and since then there has been a lot of developments in the derailleurs. This part allows a cyclist to change gears. Almost every year there are developments in the derailleurs.
At present, you will get the feature 11 gears on the rear wheel and two three along with it. You can choose either mechanical or electrical shifting. But the electronic shifting is a bit high-end option and this is why it can be expensive. But the technology might trickle down after some years. If you are a first-time buyer, then the mechanical shifting is a much better and hardy option.
Why Should You Buy Road Bikes?
Well, the very first thing I can say is, the road bikes are the sports cars of the bicycle riding world. These things can go really fast and the price is not very high. A lot of people prefer the road bikes because they are light in weight, fun to ride and are very much efficient. But there are different forms of bikes available, so why the road bikes only? There are a lot of advantages of buying the road bikes. These are as follows:
The road bikes share a lot of common traits with other forms of bikes. You can call any bike as a derived form of the road bikes. The road bikes come with features like speed, quality, efficiency and light weight and I can assure you that irrespective of any other forms of bikes, the road bikes maximize in all the features.
A lot of bikes offer speedy performance, but when it comes to the road bikes, they are the best of them all. The road bikes have got large diameter wheels and the tires are narrow. This is what contributes to the very swift performance of the road bikes. The wheels and tires are very light, smooth and aerodynamically very much efficient.
The bike will drive down the road with the least drag possible. The mountain bikes come with heavy and lugged tires. They also have mixed surface design.
This is why you cannot pick up too much speed on the mountain bikes. It is the same with the hybrid and the cruiser bikes. Since those bike wheels are prepared with a better bump option and durability, those bikes cannot pick up too much speed.
Light In Weight
We mentioned above the wheels of the road bikes are light in weight. Apart from the wheels, the frameworks of these road bikes are also very lightweight. The road bikes are made to run on the hard surfaces.
Be it concrete or sand asphalt, these road bikes will run very smoothly. That is why the manufacturers don’t have to consider the durability of the overall framework of the bike. So they can be made of minimum weight materials.
Speaking of efficiency, the road bikes are undoubtedly the most efficient ones. Why? First of all the road bikes come with faster wheels, then it has got a lighter body framework and finally no drag in the wheels. So, when you have such a combination of features, it is obviously the most efficient bike among all the variants.
Apart from these, on the road bikes, a rider will have the chance to lean into the wind instead of sitting upright. You can have multiple hand positions and stay comfortable for a long period of time.
All these things combined, the road bikes are the most efficient ones. Yes, all road bike designs are not in the same format. But they are much better than any other bikes like the mountain bikes, cruiser or hybrid ones.
Road Bike Maintenance Tips
Well, once you buy the bike, you need to maintain it properly. To maintain the bike you have to be very clear about the basic maintaining tasks. Not everyone is a pro or an engineer.
But here we will share some of the road bike maintenance tips which will make maintenance easy for you and these tips are very easy to be followed by any layman. All you need is some patience and some of the basic tools to keep your bike running smoothly.
Bike maintenance starts with bike inspection. This is the best defense against any loose component. It will help you in getting to know the probable problems before it converts into a serious accident. The A, B, C’s of a bike. The A is for Air.
It is to check the air pressure and the inflation of the tires on the bike. For the recommended tire pressure you can always have a look on the sidewall of the tire. When you are checking the air, you also have to make sure that the quick release levers and the thru axles are in place and properly tightened. Also, don’t forget to carry the patch kit and pump along with you.
Now come to the B. it is for the brakes. If the brakes are not working, they are not safe at all. So you have to make sure that the pads of all the brakes will come in contact with the rim of the wheel. No part of the brake should touch the tire. You also have to keep the brake pads clean. A lot of times you will find the grit and dirt in the pad and it will wear out the pads.
So you have to clean them periodically. You have to pull on the brake lever so that you know how much you can travel before the brakes will bite. If it is required, then you can tighten the cable of the brake. In this way, the brake pads will meet the wheel easily and offer the necessary stopping power. It also enhances control.
And the C is the Chain control. You have to keep a check on the chain and the gears as well. If you can keep your chain and gears lubricated, then the bike shifts will be easier for you. The drive trains will also last longer. For those who don’t know what the drivetrain is, it is actually made up of the front chain rings, the rear derailleur, rear cassette and the chain.
Securing The Bolts
You will find a lot of nuts and bolts in a bicycle. And this s why you have to ensure that all the nuts and bolts of your bike are placed tightly in their exact position. If the bolts are loose, then there will be serious safety hazard and chances of an accident of the bike will increase. If you are having any confusion while tightening the bolts, then you can consult the brand’s manual for the exact torque specs. Sometimes if you over-tight the bolts, it can also cause damage.
Cleaning And Lubricating The Bike
Making a regular maintenance schedule is really important if you want to keep your bike in good condition. Depending on the type of your use, you can make a monthly, weekly or a quarterly maintenance schedule. If you have been spending a lot of time in the muddy and wet areas, or ride hard and fast very frequently, then you have to make plans for cleaning the bike frequently too.
Keeping the gears, brakes and chains lubricated is very important because it enhances performance efficiency. Due to friction, a lot of bikes parts wear and tear off so you need to lubricate the different parts of the bike. Apart from that it also helps in the prevention of “freezing up” of the bikes. But you have to be cautious. Over lubrication might lead to the bad performance of the bike.
Apart from preventing wear and tear by using lubrication, you can also check an eye on the wear and tear of the tyres. The thinner a rubber becomes, the faster it will get punctured. Sometimes the tyres tend to square off. The middle section becomes flat but there is more rubber at the edges. And this is what makes the bike feel less stable when you are leaning into the corners. So if you notice uneven wears, then you have to change the tyres.
Cleaning The Headsets
Most of the bikes which are apparently well maintained have got some issues with the headset bearings. These headsets are placed within your head tube and these headsets face the torture of every ride. These parts are vulnerable and are very like to get corroded. If you want to prevent this then you have to remove the stem and then drop the fork out of it.
It is very easy if you just do it by keeping the bike on the ground. If the frames are new, then they will have sealed bearings. So all you have to do is just apply some grease to the surfaces to get the headset out. You need to inspect the fork steerer to look for the damage signs.
The Gear Cables
The gear cables can leave you high and dry on the road all of a sudden. The reason is, these cables tend to get weak over time because they are bent constantly. So you have to take care of these gear cables. Now, cleaning them is not really something that you should try on your own if you are a first-time bike buyer. So you need to go to the bike servicing shop to get the gear cables serviced.
Cleaning The Chain
The chains are the most important parts of any bike. If the chains are running smoothly, you will not face any difficulty irrespective of the distance you travel. A dirty chain will wear off very quickly than a clean chain. It will also reduce the life of other drivetrain components too. It is not a very difficult task to clean the chains.
You can also use the lubricator to keep the chain running smoothly. There are varieties of lubricants. If you are using the wet lubricants, then remember that these can attract more dirt and dust. On the other hand, if you are using the dry lubes, then those are suitable in dry conditions. But those lubricants tend to be washed away by rain. Make sure that every link of the chain is oiled.
A lot of people tend to ignore the pedals. Some of them even use the old and clapped pedals on the new bikes. And this is what makes the bike riding uncomfortable for them. You have to watch out for the loose bearings and also the worn out cleats. If the pedals are tightened then they will keep spinning smoothly. But you cannot just fix a worn out cleat surface on the pedal. You have to change the pedals then.
Finally, the brake pads; the brake pads come with the wear indicators and this is why it won’t be difficult for you to check how much life is left on them. Are the brake pads wearing evenly or are they contacting the rim square? If the brake pads are not contacting the rim square, then you have to use the coarse file to squeeze a bit more life from unevenly worn pads.
Once that is done, you can readjust the pads and they will contact with the rim perfectly. The levers must also have a very light feels and you shouldn’t need to offer excessive force for pulling the brake. If you have a hard time pulling the brakes, you need to get a cable and caliper servicing.
Vilano Shadow 2.0 14 speed Road bike
This one comes with integrated brake lever and shifters which offer the best and most efficient braking and shifting. The design is very much simple and convenient for the roads. It has got a very durable 6061 double framed aluminum Aero Frame along with the integrated headset.
The bike comes with 700C 11/8” thread less fork. There are free pedals included. This one is very light in weight and the sturdy aluminum frame offers a very smooth riding and very easy transport. It has got the Shimano A070 STI integrated brake lever and that will give you a very reliable shifting.
The front wheel comes with quick release feature and this is easy to install. You will not need any tools for installing it. There is the aluminum kickstand and the light in weight metal frame helps you travel a long distance if necessary. The pedal threads are a bit different from left and right side.
You will see the left and right signs marked within the spindle of every pedal. The brakes come from the Dual Pivot Alloy caliper and also the wheels are 700C double walled CNC alloy machine sides. The bike comes partially assembled. The best feature of this brand is, it focuses on the quality of the bikes.
Schwinn Volare 1200 Bike 700C
The Schwinn Volare comes with an aluminum fitness frame along with the rigid fork and the Shimano 21 speed EZ fire shifters. It has got the Shimano rear shifters and derailleurs for the quick shifts. The brakes consist of the alloy linear pull brakes, alloy wheels and also high profile rims. The Schwinn Volare has got the Schwinn alloy crank.
The brand is one of the most popular brands of bikes and this is why you can trust the customer care services. The bike is very much versatile, fast and light in weight. This is just the perfect one for multiple purposes, starting from exercising to commuting. It offers very much comfort and gives you a great performance which will even support an athletic program.
The bike comes with features like lifetime warranty as long as you are the owner of the bike. The rigid frame will offer you a complete control and return of your effort. It has got the 21 speed Shimano EZ fire shifters along with the Shimano rear derailleurs.
The bike has got both the front and rear alloy linear derailleurs and pull-brakes. The alloy wheels helps in keeping the weight low. One of the best features of this bike is, it has got the aluminum fitness style frame and that comes with a very athletic riding position relieving you from all the pains.
Vilano R2 commuter Aluminum Road Bike
This is one of the best road bikes if you want to have a mode of transportation regularly to go to an office, or class or any other places. It is a great starter for those who want to get into cycling. If you are just into light bike riding for fun, then also you can choose this one.
This one comes with a 6061 aluminum frame, front and rear derailleur, shifters, alloy caliper brakes and 700c doubled walled CNC alloy machined quick release wheel set. Well, as you are aware that the bikes will come as partially assembled and the complete installation is very easy.
This one is very light in weight and makes the perfect one for your ride to different nearby places. The looks are stylish and you can go where ever you want to go in this one. It has got the upgraded wheels and they are now the quick release wheels.
One of the best features of this brand is, they focus on customer satisfaction. The Vilano Bikes offer affordable bikes but they make sure that there is no compromise in the quality of those bikes. This bike is just perfect with a rear rack. But in case the total weight is 200 pounds, then you can change the tire into a bigger one along with hard sides.
The bike offers comfortable riding and is very much stable in performance. But one of the drawbacks is, in the handlebar configuration, you might not get too much space for mounting a bike or phone. Apart from that, there are no problems with the drivetrain, frame or any other parts of the bike construction.
Schwinn Phocus 1600 Men's Road Bike 700c Wheels
This road bike comes with the aluminum frame and carbon filter road fork. It is one of the unique features of this bike. The bike has got upgraded gears and the Shimano class 16 speed derailleur. The best part of the derailleur is it comes with the Micro Shift and the integrated shift and brake lever combo. These gears offer a very effective shifting.
This bike has got the high profile alloy and the double walled rims. These rims come with paired spokes. It is very light in weight and is very strong with the front quick release. There are the Promax alloy dual pivot caliper road brakes which offer brilliant breaking power. This road bike comes with a perfect drop bar to just go out. It has got quick and agile riding option with Microshift 14 speed integrated brake lever and shifter combo.
For the quick release front wheel, there is the high profile alloy rim that comes with light yet very durable spokes. If you want to adjust the height of the seat, then you can you do it easily with the quick release saddle. For the sure stopping and power brakes, you will have the Pro Max Alloy caliper road brakes.
There are also the toe clips and straps which enhance the performance. The bike weighs 26 pounds overall and the saddle is very light and comfortable. It is suitable for a person of height 5.8” which is a normal height. There are options of upgrading the tyre to 28”.
GMC Denali Road bike
This one is the last one in our list of affordable road bikes. It is a 21-speed road bike which has got a very lightweight aluminum frame. It is less expensive than most of the available road bikes, but that does not mean it has got some less quality or features.
You will get the alloy calipers and also the alloy brake levers. The best part of this road bike is a great quality high-profile Vitesse racing rims. These rims are very sturdy and even if the bike is taken through the rough areas or bumpy roads, these spikes and rims will offer a very stable performance.
For the ease of change of gears, you will get the Shimano derailleur and the Shimano Revo shifts. You can quickly and smoothly change gears. There are also the high-performance 700C tires. So if you want to get into a fun street racing, you won’t have to think about changing or upgrading the tyres.
The framework is solid and with the alloy calipers and brake levers at your disposal, you will stop in a moment. The shifters will let you change the gears without taking the hands off the handle bar. So it offers better safety and confidence. The Shimano derailleur is available with the drive train and this will enable the smooth gear changes. There is also a water bottle cage in which you can carry bottles.
Now that we have come to the end of our article, I need to tell you while purchasing road bikes, the basic thing you have to keep in mind is, they must be light, fast and durable enough. The road bikes need to keep running for a long period of time at once. The best bikes have good quality components, so never compromise on the quality of the components. Not all the bike manufacturers come with the finest quality bikes.
Before you make a final purchase on the bikes, you have to check the reviews, test the brakes, tyres and other basic accessories. Make sure you buy the right bike size.
We have put all the necessary factors to consider in this article, starting from the cost, the comfort to the components. If you are a novice and thinking to buy a road bike, you will find all the necessary factors mentioned here. Make use of these important things to your benefit.
Finding the right bike is not really a difficult task. All you have to do is just go through the product details mentioned above and then compare the models. Finally, since not everyone is a professional biker, we would suggest you take the help of an experienced mechanic to do the assembling and tune up the bike for you to prevent any mishaps due to malfunction.