You may want to calibrate your Peloton Bike or Bike+ and are wondering if the methods are different. Conversely, you may wish to purchase one of the bikes but don’t know if one is better than the other due to its calibration. So are they different?
Both the Peloton Bike and Bike+ are factory calibrated. Thus, all Peloton bike sensors are accurate to within 10% of each other for both the Bike and Bike+. However, the method of calibrating each bike is different because the standard Bike is mechanical while the Bike+ is digital.
We will discuss the various aspects of calibration regarding the Bike and Bike+. This will take into consideration if Peloton manufacturers and then calibrates each bike differently and, if so, why? Also, discover if you should calibrate your bike, what It means to do so, and how.
Are The Peloton Bike And Bike+ Calibrated Differently?
This question can warrant somewhat of an ambiguous view. Firstly it could mean, “does Peloton calibrate their two bikes differently.”. otherwise, it could mean “do you need to calibrate the two bikes differently if you wish to calibrate them.”.
Regarding the first question, Peloton has stated that, in fact, all bikes shipped from Peloton are factory calibrated. Furthermore, they are all accurate to within 10% of one another. This means that, for the most part, you may find some variation in resistance from one bike to another (about a 10% maximum).
Take into consideration that 10% can actually be quite significant, especially if you are unfit, and two, if you are riding at a high resistance for a sustained period of time.
There is an exception to the factory standard 10% calibration. Peloton has said that the first 200 bikes that were ever produced (ones shipped to early kick-starter supporters) were adjusted to a different scale. Hence, these bikes will vary more in terms of 10% for resistance.
Now that we answered the first question, we need to consider the next. There are, in fact, two different methods involved in calibrating both the Bike and Bike+.
This is because the Peloton Bike+ has and is powered by a braking system that is automatically controlled. This means that calibration requires no effort or tinkering on your part. A load sensor on the Bike+ will measure outputs (which we will discuss) separately and adjust the calibration accordingly.
It will help if you remember that out of the two versions of Peloton bikes (the Bike and Bike+) that the Bike+ has better technology. The standard Peloton Bike utilizes mechanical resistance, allowing for a fast and quiet ride. Also, the resistance knob makes resistance changes seamless. Conversely, the Bike+ is all digitized, which will automatically adjust the resistance level to the instructor’s cue.
Take note that both versions of bikes offer the same metrics. That is to say that besides the calibration, all the data will be the same.
How Do You Calibrate The Peloton Bike?
Going into depth on how to calibrate the Peloton Bike is beyond the scope of this article. However, luckily enough, we have already written a detailed article on how to do it, and you can find that article here.
How Do You Calibrate The Peloton Bike+
Once again, this is beyond the reach of this article. However, we have laid out detailed steps on how to calibrate your Peloton Bike+ in this article here.
What Is Calibration Exactly?
In order to better understand if you actually may need to calibrate your Peloton Bike or Bike+, let’s precisely try and understand what calibration means.
On both the Peloton Bike and Bike+, there are two physical sensors. One sensor measures resistance while the other will measure cadence.
Resistance specifically on the bike refers to measuring how far the break is away from the flywheel. The sensor that measures cadence records the pace (how fast) the flywheel will turn (revolutions per minute or rpm).
These two measurements give you the “output” of the bike. The output measurement is calculated by the sensor control board, which is done multiple times per second. The output data is then measured against dynameter, which will essentially give you your output reading in watts.
Thus, the output value of your bike is directly related and tied to particular cadence and resistance values. Furthermore, these cannot be changed. For example, a 40% resistance setting with a 90 cadence will always result in a 135-watt output.
For this reason, it is not recommended that you calibrate your Peloton Bike or Bike+ (which we will discuss now).
Do You Need To Calibrate Your Peloton Bike Or Bike+?
Many Peloton owners feel that they should calibrate their bikes (either the Bike or Bike+) for one reason or another. However, because all bikes are factory calibrated, there is no need to adjust your bike.
Peloton has stated that there is no need for calibration besides for particular situations that the Peloton Support Team is able to diagnose.
Owners of the bike who try and calibrate their Bikes may find that the output can actually start to become less accurate.
Peloton further states that if you are experiencing any problems with your bike, you should contact their support team immediately.
Why Does Peloton Not Want You To Calibrate Your Bike?
There are a few factors to why Peloton does not want you to calibrate your Bike or Bike+. The first is that due to all the bikes being factory calibrated, there is no need for it.
The next is because all your data, riding history, and metrics for your Bike and Bike+ may be stored under calibration. Recalibrating your bike may put you in a position where you may actually find the bike more difficult to ride. As such, you may never reach your PR (Personal Records) again. This leads to demotivation, followed by the will not to ride, and Peloton does not want this.
What Will Changing The Peloton Calibration Do?
The only element that calibrating your Bike or Bike+ will change is what a specific resistance will feel like. This means after you calibrate your bike, the resistance at any level (between 0 and 100%) will either feel more difficult or easier.
This is because calibration will tell the sensor control board precisely where to place the magnetic brake. It is possible, especially on the standard bike version, to calibrate your bike incorrectly.
Consider that the sensor control board could tell the brake that it has reached 100% in an example situation, but in reality, you are only sitting at 50%. The problem is that you may not know this and as we said, this could lead to demotivation, not hitting your PRs, and then subsequently not riding again and giving up.
We discovered that both the Peloton Bike and Bike+ are actually factory calibrated, and there is no difference (in terms of calibration) between the two. However, if you wish to calibrate them yourself, each has a specific method. Although we did not discuss those particular methods in this article, you are able to find out how to do that by reading our other detailed article here.
The last thing to consider is that you don’t want to adjust or recalibrate your bike unless you have encountered a problem and there is no other option. Recalibrating your bike can seriously mess with the resistance and, thus, the feel of the bike. We suggest rather contacting the Peloton support team for help if you don’t know what you should do.