For many of us, the arrival of winter weather means the end of outdoor riding – but it shouldn’t! If you’re fully prepared for the conditions, you can still get outside and enjoy a day’s riding.

To help you prepare, we’ve pulled together the top tips, tricks, and products you need to make the most of a cold-weather ride, either by yourself or as part of a larger group.

1. Go tubeless

There’s never a good time to suffer a flat tyre, but it’s especially deflating in the winter. That’s why you should ditch your summer set-up and performance tyres for a tubeless option.

It’s an easy way to reduce the number of punctures you get, and although setting them up can be tricky at first, it’s easy once you get the hang of it. You’ll just need to make sure you have tubeless-compatible wheels, tubeless tyres and a high-quality sealant.

Need a hand with the set-up? Let us take care of it. A Halfords bike technician can apply the sealant for you, saving you from a potentially messy situation. Just book a Free Bike Health Check for an initial assessment and we’ll take it from there.

If you’re not ready to take the plunge into the world of no tubes, opt for a more puncture-resistant tyre instead. We know it’ll add extra weight to your bike and isn’t as fast as your performance tyre, but in winter you’ll want to prioritise safety and fewer sudden stops over speed.

Our top pick? The Schwalbe Marathon Plus is one of the most popular tyres out there thanks to its dependability, so it’s a worthy addition to your bike.

2. Fit mudguards

If there’s one surefire way to annoy your fellow riders, it’s to not use mudguards.

Even if you don’t mind spray up your back, you can be certain those behind you don’t want a face full of dirt – especially when the weather’s turning.

The solution? For the road, it’s the SKS Raceblade Pro XL Mudguard Set. Designed for tyre widths of 25-32mm, it’s compatible with aero forks, disc brakes, direct-mount brakes, and thru axles. If you’re someone who values every saved gram, you’ll be pleased to know the set is super lightweight too!

If your idea of a weekend ride is a muddy trail adventure, try the Halfords Essentials MTB Bike Mudguard Set. Both quick and easy to install, you can adjust the fit according to your wheel size.

3. Don’t skip the post-ride clean

Admit it, you’ve done it before. We all have. The last thing you want to do after a ride is clean your bike, especially if it’s cold outside, but regularly leaving your bike exposed to grime will soon take its toll.

Cleaning your bike isn’t just about efficiency (although it’ll run much smoother if it’s clean), but it can also prevent wear and damage. For example, a dirt-filled, gritty chain can wear down cogs on your cassette and your chain ring, and you don’t want them getting to a point where the chain slips. It’s not just your drivetrain, either – your bike is full of moving parts that need cleaning.

That’s why you need to clean it after every ride with specialised products like those found in the Muc-Off Clean, Protect and Lube Kit. It has everything needed to clean and protect your bike throughout winter.

4. Dress for the weather

Clothing is such a simple thing, yet it’s arguably one of the hardest things to master. Even in winter, you can soon find yourself feeling stuffy if you’ve piled too many layers on, but go out in too little and your numb hands will soon be struggling to pull brake levers.

The key is to choose flexible pieces of clothing that can easily be removed if you get too warm, like the Boardman Leg Warmers and Arm Warmers.

Try to pick clothing that will aid your visibility too. With reflective panels and a waterproof design, the Boardman Men’s Waterproof Jacket will help you be seen and keep you protected from the elements.

5. Stay hydrated and well-fuelled

Even in winter, it’s important to stay on top of hydration. Of course, you won’t be drinking quite as much as you would on a summer’s day, and you often won’t even feel particularly thirsty, but keeping your fluids topped up is key.

So, it’s best to adopt a little but often strategy. Get into the habit of having a little sip regularly and after time, it’ll become second nature.

Keeping on top of fuelling is also important. It can feel like you’re not working that hard on a cold day as you’re simply trying to keep warm, but you need to keep eating. For winter, we’d suggest the SIS 7 Go Gel Taster Pack. Each gel contains plenty of carbohydrates and they’re easy to consume while riding, as you’ll probably not want to stop too often in the chilly conditions.

That concludes our guide to winter cycling mistakes and the essentials you need to avoid them. You can find everything included in this blog, plus much more, over at

You want to keep riding through winter, you want Halfords.