Pool Chemical Damage To Bike In Storage, Need Suggestions.


New Member
Jun 19, 2015
I've had my MTB in storage near some pool equipment for a few years. Pulled it out to prep it for riding again and noticed the saddle had some acid damage. Bummer, but figured I must have gotten acid on it somehow. Then noticed the rear wheel had a couple broken spokes and all the bolts on the bike are rusted out. Fork also has some strange pitting on it, and the frame is showing some rust spots. Not good.

Took the rear wheel into my LBS to buy replacement spokes and the guy immediately asks if it was stored near pool chemicals. (Guessing this is a common issue.) He suggests that all spokes should be replaced on both wheels, as they show signs of chemical damage. Problem is it's a mavic wheel with expensive spokes. Suggests switching to a Sun Rhino rim and rebuilding both wheels. Cost would be around $300.

Here's my dilemma. I bought the bike used in 2006 for a little over $300. It was probably built in 2004, so we're talking about a 10 year old bike. I'm worried about the additional chemical damage. Wondering what else could be borked.

So, do I spend $300 and rebuild both wheels, or spend more and upgrade to a new/used bike? I'd prolly be able to sell a couple parts off the old bike like the Paul hubs (those don't appear to have any damage).

Here's my current bike:
  • Fort SS ChroMo frame treated with FrameSaver
  • Fork: Marzocchi MX comp
  • Crank Brothres Candy Pedals
  • Seat Post, Bar, and Stem are all Titec.
  • Oury Lock on grips
  • XTR V brake's and levers.
  • Mavic x3.1 Tubeless wheels with Paul Hubs
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Reactions: haleylx4
May 9, 2015
I would trash the bike. Pool acid (hydrochloric) gets into the air and in a closed space will corrode any metal it comes into contact with. There's no telling what unseen damage has been done to the frame, fork, or any other metal components. You would have to replace everything to make sure nothing sponteneously disintegrates while you're riding.


New Member
May 26, 2015
Its probably just a matter of time before other parts start breaking. I would scrap it and get something newer.

About 2 years ago I decided to get back into mountain biking. My old GT LTS from the mid 90's had been stored in my parents garage since about 1999. My first ride I broke 2 spokes on the rear wheel. Another ride or 2 later I broke my small chain ring. Another ride or 2 later i taco'd the front wheel. Instead of putting any more money into the old bike I bought a new bike and haven't broken any parts since. It was also nice to upgrade to disk brakes and a longer travel fork. The increased clearance for larger tires and mud has also come in handy.

My dad also has an LTS thats a year older than mine was. He thought about getting his up and running, and found he had a broken front hub. Even without chemicals making the situation worse parts were breaking. I think his frame is fine, but its probably not worth putting too much money into it.


New Member
May 9, 2015
I'd probably get cheap wheels and ride it. Maybe keep an eye out for a fork, but it doesn't look like it was affected much.

Is it s 26er? 135 rear end? Is the current wheel a freehub with spacers and a SS cog?


New Member
Feb 22, 2015
First thing you want to do is rinse the entire bike with a soft spray of water to neutralize the acid that remains on the surface. Do not spray the BB directly with a strong spray. BTW, Hayden52 is correct, your bike was exposed to Hydrochloric Acid. That's what Muratic acid is and the chlorine in the trichlor combines with the moisture in the humid shed to create HCl. But the concentrations are probably low so were talking about slight acidity not the kind that destroys seals. I'd gamble and keep the bike. Your BB and head are probably OK but if in doubt, take the head apart, clean and re-grease. Your BB is sealed, leave it alone just be sure when you wash the bike, don't spray directly at the BB. The surface oxidation on the crank is cosmetic. I wouldn't worry about it. Polish it if it bothers you. Your gears are a judgement call. Inspect them for corrosion, if it's substantial, replace. I would replace the chain. Obvious you need new wheels, don't try to save the old wheels as they are toast. With any luck you have rim brakes. If you have disc, inspect it. Corrosion of the disc could create braking problems, worse if the exposed metal in the housing is corroded, you may have to replace the entire brake. Test them for performance and watch them for several weeks to see if they jamb. If you've got rim brakes, inspect the pad, otherwise you should be good to go. The shock is all about the stanchions, if corroded you've got a problem, otherwise probably OK.
The acid only attacks the surfaces. That's why the wheels that are all about surface were the most affected. The acid does not attack internal surfaces or greased surfaces as the grease protects the surface. No way would I trash the frame or the bike. But you will have to spend some $$$ to recover it.
Keep in mind steel (spokes) rust and are destroyed. Not true for aluminum. The coating of oxidation on the surface will not destroy the capability of those components to function unless they are in contact with a seal, like the fork stanchions. With frame saver inside the frame, I would continue to ride that frame even though it is steel.


New Member
Jun 10, 2015
Worse than the acid is if it was in contact with Calcium hypochlorite fumes(the solid tablets or powder) or Sodium Hypochlorite fumes (the liquid).

The only two metals that will not be destroyed in short order are titanium and Hastelloy C alloy!

Sorry to say,but you are fighting a loosing battle here.

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