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Why they're good news for you and your bike…

Some people don’t like the look of mudguards on a sleek road bike but there’s no doubting the practical benefits. Here are six reasons why you should consider fitting them this winter.

1. Mudguards keep you comfortable

The most obvious reason for fitting mudguards is that they’ll keep gunk and water from flying up and getting all over you, keeping you drier, warmer and more comfortable than you’d otherwise be. If you’ve not used them before you’ll be surprised at just how much of a difference mudguards make across a wide variety of different riding conditions.

SKS Raceblade Pro XL mudguards - rear.jpg

2. Mudguards offer a performance benefit

No, really. Cycling is more of a challenge when you’re wet and cold. By helping you stay dry, mudguards allow you to focus on training, if that’s what you have in mind. You’ll also be likely to stay out on the bike longer if you’re comfortable, rather than cutting things short and heading home because you’re not enjoying it.

3. Mudguards are better for your ride-mates

In many clubs mudguards are compulsory for wet weather riding because they stop spray being slung up from your tyres and soaking the rider behind. Even if you’re not in a club, anyone you ride with will appreciate you using long mudguards when there’s water on the road.
ribble sportive.jpg

4. Mudguards improve your bike’s longevity

Okay, nothing's going to keep your bike completely dry when you’re riding in the rain, but mudguards will cut the amount of dirty water that gets chucked up by your tyres and into the moving parts. Bearings don’t like water and your drivetrain isn’t fond of mud, so fitting mudguards helps from a maintenance point of view.

Check out our mudguard reviews here. 

5. Mudguards can improve your vision

Use mudguards and less water and grit gets flicked up from the road onto your glasses or into the face of the rider behind you, so it’s good news in terms of vision.dual-red-01 (1).jpg

6. Mudguards prevent that line up the back of your jersey 

We all know that brown line of mud that gets sprayed up the back of a cyclist’s jersey from a rear wheel. It’s not the coolest look and it can be virtually impossible to get out of light coloured clothing. You don’t get it if you use mudguards. 

Check out our Buyer’s Guide to the best mudguards here. 

Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over 20+ years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for eight years, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a past winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer.

18 comments

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therevokid [1023 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

and you mnay not be welcomed back in some cafes without them ...  3

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Wilts Cyclist [14 posts] 2 years ago
2 likes

Trouble with many mudguards is they lack decent mudflap. So shoes, chain, chainset, and BB get splattered and rider behind gets splattered as well. It's simple and cheap to your own, but I wonder why they don't come with them in the first place.

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urbane [100 posts] 2 years ago
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@Wilts Cyclist:

Try these http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/sks-commuter-hybrid-mudguards/rp-prod25795

I just fitted a replacement for my 26" version this week.

I did so mods, including replacing all the nuts with lock nuts and killed some rattling by riveting on another fixing plate (drilled off the worn out set) and securing this to my pannier rack's legs.

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Kim Chee [40 posts] 2 years ago
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Wilts Cyclist wrote:

Trouble with many mudguards is they lack decent mudflap. So shoes, chain, chainset, and BB get splattered and rider behind gets splattered as well. It's simple and cheap to your own, but I wonder why they don't come with them in the first place.

Hideous stay/guard joinery but these work fabulously and are quite a steal! https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004I93S26/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s...

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dlambfra [3 posts] 2 years ago
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I have the SKS guards in the link above (only in matt black) on my commuting/touring bike - the long mudflaps are great and a no-brainer IMHO. They look pretty good and are highly effective, wouldn't do without them, especially with winter just around the corner.

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tailwind10 [49 posts] 2 years ago
1 like

The mudflap solution is here, bespoke design made for your club etc. Neater than an old milk bottle, they work great.
http://www.topflaps.co.uk/

 

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J90 [430 posts] 2 years ago
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The problem is a lot of people don't adhere to cycling etiquette/common decency. You always hear that they look crap....no, when you get on the bike it makes it look far worse buddy.

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barbarus [536 posts] 2 years ago
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There's a certain sort of bike that just looks good, if not better, wearing guards. Purposeful, intrepid. Outright race frames not so much but they are for dry days anyway.

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FatBoyW [270 posts] 2 years ago
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Are the forks in your first picture subject to a recall?

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Grumpy17 [92 posts] 2 years ago
1 like
FatBoyW wrote:

Are the forks in your first picture subject to a recall?

 

Failry sure the DC07 fork shown in the picture was not the model recalled.

Own two of them so I hope not!

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Trickytree1984 [57 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

7. Don't be a dick

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ChetManley [95 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
tailwind10 wrote:

The mudflap solution is here, bespoke design made for your club etc. Neater than an old milk bottle, they work great.
http://www.topflaps.co.uk/

 

That web address is pretty dodgy though!

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philshems [14 posts] 1 year ago
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FatBoyW wrote:

Are the forks in your first picture subject to a recall?

 

Kinesis alloy steerer tube forks weren't affected by the recall:

http://shop.upgradebikes.co.uk/Catalogue/Technical/Kinesis/RACELIGHT-T-CARBON-FORK-2003-2009-RECALL-NOTICE

 

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WashoutWheeler [115 posts] 1 year ago
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I added a set of full length mudguards to my order when I speced up my new bike VERY glad I did now, I took them off for the summer but put them back on three weeks ago never been drier or cleaner in the wet. Agree with everything the article says. And the club I wish to join will not allow you out on a club ride without them.

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srchar [1095 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

GUARDS R COOL

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srchar [1095 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

[dup]

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Morat [315 posts] 1 year ago
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Another option for mudguard flaps. I've had a set for a year now and they make all the difference, especially for your feet/BB/Chainrings if you fit a front one. They're also extremely reflective but you don't notice until you shine a light on them.

http://rawmudflap.uk/shop/

 

7. Rear mudguards keep your back light clean in foul weather - exactly when you need it most.

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DrJDog [473 posts] 1 year ago
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Mudguards are great. I rode into work for years without them, then for some reason bought a pair and I thought back on how utterly stupid I'd been.

 

I made the mistake of buying a new Canyon Urban. It doesn't take mudguards (or a rack). Do not buy a Canyon Urban.  17  I'm stuck with one of those seatpost things that doesn't help the frame or the rider behind, and have to wear a rucksack.