Last week, my air conditioner wouldn’t start up as it normally would when you flip the switch. Calling the air conditioner repair man is always a mixed bag. You want the air to work when you turn it on but you also have a terror that the bill might make you want to jump out of a window! When the technician went to inspect the outside unit, he brought me outside and told me that the condenser needs to be cleaned on a regular basis. He told me that with a high pressure hose, you can spray the unit down after you have disconnected power, and that this would vastly improve both the performance and the life of the condenser.
The same is true with your elliptical…not that you spray it off regularly but simply to keep it clean. You might wonder why it would make any difference in your elliptical and the truth of the matter is that keeping it clean is the most important thing you can do for your elliptical. The big problem areas we see are:
1) Roller Wheels- When dust and dirt collects on roller wheels, it can cause the material that the rollers are made out of break down and they become pitted and eventually the surface flakes off and must be replaced.
2) Ramps or Ramp Covers- When dirt and dust collect on ramp covers or if it is a solid piece, the ramp surface itself and that can damage even brand new wheels but it will eat up older wheels in a hurry when the ramp surface or ramp covers are worn. When you clean these before every use, you greatly reduce the amount of wear due to dirt.
3) Bushing or Bearings- Bushings and bearings are the lifeblood of an elliptical because they bear the massive amount of stress and torque that the elliptical encounters with every workout. When you have dust and dirt accumulation on these parts or around their mount areas, you end up with the effect of tiny little scouring pads eating away at the working surface of your bushing or clogging up and wearing down the bearings prematurely.
4) Electronics- One area that most people never think about is the electronics.
Many electronic board are mounted flat in the elliptical or in an area where dust and dirt is directed toward and when dust builds up on electronics, you can get the electricity to arc and then, you get electronics failure. We replace numerous electronics boards every year on ellipticals because someone didn’t know that you should blow the dust off on a regular basis. These tips will help you elliptical perform and last and reduce your need for a Treadmill Doctor. Back to my air conditioner. Fortunately my repair bill was easy to swallow because a small part burned out but even this small repair bill could have been completely prevented if I had the knowledge and put that knowledge to work…just like your elliptical. You can bet in the future, my condenser will be regularly cleaned just like my treadmill and elliptical are cleaned regularly.