Rental Agreement

This is provided as a guide for participating in the Rice Bikes Rental Program.

Legal Release Form

Rental Agreement

Like with any mechanical device, unusual noises are never a good sign. If you hear anything out of the ordinary, especially something that seems to sync up with the turning of the wheels or the rotation of your pedals, definitely mention it to the mechanics at the Bike Shop.

Renter Expectations

In order to ensure proper maintenance of the bicycles, renters are required to adhere to the rules of the rental program. Failure to follow these rules will result in extra charges (stated below) and possible non-continuance in the program.

  1. Tire Pressure
    1. Failure to keep tires properly inflated can result in pinch flats, which are easily distinguishable from other flats.
    2. To prevent pinch flats, renters are required to check their tire pressure once every two weeks and inflate to the appropriate pressure when needed (70-90 psi). There are two air pumps located behind the main Housing and Dining Office that can be used if you do not have access to a pump at your college/residence.Additionally, the Rice Bikes offers free pump service. You can also look for a pump at your college- they should have one for their beer bike bikes.
    3. Tube replacements (flat tires) are not considered routine maintenance and are NOT covered. Renters must pay for tube replacements if they have a flat tire ($12 for tube and labor). If a renter returns their rental bike with a flat tire the cost of the flat will be taken out of their initial deposit.
  2. Tune-Ups
    1. Bikes should be treated with care and brought in for routine maintenance as needed. All routine maintenance is covered and will not incur any additional costs to the renter.
    2. If the renter fails to bring their bike in for routine maintenance, none of the repairs will be covered at the end of the semester. Any repair costs will be taken from the rental deposit.
  3. Late Fee
    1. If your bike is not returned by the date specified by our program, a $30 late fee will be removed from the rental deposit. Each additional day the bike is late will result in another $5 charge. If the Bike is not returned within 15 days, the renter will forfeit their deposit and will no longer be able to rent a bike in the future.
    2. If the renter fails to return their bicycle after the 15 days with no contact, it will be considered bicycle theft and the case will be taken to RUPD.
  4. Improperly Locking Your Bike
    1. Bikes are to be locked by both their frame and rear wheel, to a solidly grounded object. The grounded object must have a way of preventing locks from coming loose (ie. no open tops).
    2. If a bike is reported as being improperly locked, penalties are as follows:
      1. First offense results in a warning by email
      2. Second offense results in a $20 fine taken from the rental deposit
      3. Third offense results in another $20 fine and dismissal from the rental program, with no refund of the rental fee. The remainder of the deposit minus any repairs and fees will be returned once the key has been returned.
    3. If the bike is found not locked to anything, you will receive a $20 fine. If it is found unlocked a second time you will be dismissed from the program with no refund of the rental fee. The remainder of the deposit minus and repairs and fees will be returned once the key has been returned.
  5. Lost and Stolen Bikes
    1. Lost and stolen bikes carry a maximum fine of $400. Actual fine will vary based on specific circumstances as determined by our program.
    2. Lost and stolen parts of bikes will result in charges for the replacement of those parts.
  6. Lost keys will result in a $25 replacement fee. If a key is lost please contact us at ricebikes@gmail.com.
  7. Renters are required to report any damage, theft, or problems with their bicycle as soon as possible to the Rice Bikes (ricebikes@gmail.com).

Remember, this program is designed to help bike renters travel around Houston. Additional charges are unlikely unless the bike is used in a manner unintended by the scope of this program.

Early Return Fees

If for some reason you choose to return your rental bike to Rice Bikes before the end of your rental period some fees may be taken from your rental fee in addition to any additional repair costs.

• Returns within the first week of the rental period – refund of security deposit and 80% of rental fee

• No returns after the first week of the rental period

Rental Fee and Damage/Replacement Costs

The cost for this rental service is $65 per semester. You are expected to provide $65 by check or cash on or before you pick up your bicycle. In addition you will be required to pay a $100 deposit that will be returned at the end of the rental period if there are no excessive damages and the bike is returned on time. The rental charge covers the following:

  1. A Kryptonite Keeper U-Lock with one key for each renter.
    1. Locks are expected to be kept in like-new condition. Renter will be charged the replacement cost for lost keys or lost/damaged locks
    2. Replacement fee: $25
  2. Basket (upon request)
    1. Replacement fee: $18

Damages will be assessed on a case by case basis depending on the cost of replacement parts and labor. The replacement cost of the bicycle is $400 and will be assessed if the bicycle is lost, stolen, or if the structure of the frame is compromised beyond repair.

 

Repairs and General Maintenance

Any repairs not listed under the routine maintenance section are considered “excessive.” Bear in mind that the list of excessive (aka non-routine) repairs is NOT comprehensive.

List of monthly routine maintenance repairs covered by rental fee (“reasonable wear and tear”):

  • Chain Lube (once per month)
  • Removing Rust, Chain or Cosmetic
  • Cosmetic Paint
  • Adjusting Brakes, Front or Rear
  • Repairing Flats, Front or Rear (should only have one per semester at most, two are allowed)
  • Truing Wheels, Front or Rear
  • Replacing Light Set Batteries
  • Replacing Tires, Front or Rear (only after wear and tear from multiple renters)
  • Replacing Grips*
  • Replacing Chains*
  • Replacing Basket*
  • Replacing Brake Cable and Housing*
  • Replacing Freewheel*

* Denotes rare circumstances

List of possible excessive repairs:

  • To be paid by renter in addition to the rental fee
  • This list is not all-encompassing. Costs of any repairs not listed will be decided on a case by case basis.

Repair

Parts ($)

Labor ($)

Total Cost to Renter ($)

Major Cosmetic Damage

5

15

20

Structural Damage to Frame/Fork

290

20

310

Excessive Wheel Bending

40

10

50

Major rips/tears in saddle

20

5

25

Over-rusted Chain

10

5

15

Missing Accessories

Cost of accessory

Cost of installation

Depends on accessory

How to Keep Your Bike Happy!

You are responsible for properly maintaining your bike. Trust your gut – if something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. Odd clicks and noises aren’t good, and we’re happy to help. Your rental includes a monthly check up to make sure things are going well. Between those check ups, here are things to look out for:

1.   Keep your tires inflated.

Keep your tires inflates between 70 and 90 PSI. There are public bike pumps at Rice Bikes and H&D. If you have a flat, take it in to us.

2.   Listen to your chain.

Listen to make sure your chain sounds smooth. Take it in to us to have it lubed when it sounds rough.

DO NOT use WD-40 or non-bike lubes.

3.    Lock your bike.

Lock your bike in a well-lit area that has high traffic. Lock your bike with the provided U-lock and a secondary cable lock if possible. Attach the U-lock through the wheel within the rear triangle (yellow region in the diagram below).

 

4.    Watch your brakes.

Two things to look for. First, are they responsive? If not, this is unsafe and needs immediate repair. Second, do they rub against the wheel? If so, the wheels likely need adjustment.

5.   Be mindful of wear and tear

As tires get old, they begin to wear down and the fibers behind the rubber begin to show. If you see this happening, bring your bike into the shop as soon as possible. Overly worn tires have a tendency to pop inner tubes (the “balloon” inside the tire that inflates to maintain the pressure).

 

General Bicycle Safety and Etiquette

Bicyclists are not exempt from traffic rules rules. Biking on Rice’s campus also carries additional responsibility. Below is a brief summary of some of the most important ones.

On campus

1. When passing pedestrians, slow down, and yell or ring a bell

2. Stop at all stop signs (RUPD can give you a ticket if you do not stop!)

3. Yield to pedestrians, they should never have to yield to you

4. Bike with the flow of traffic, never against it (do not bike the wrong way on the inner loop)

5. Ride on the right, but pass on the left

6. Walk your bike under covered walkways busy paths

Off campus

1. When turning, signal with your arms

2. Use your front and rear lights at night to make yourself more visible to cars

3. Ride on the sidewalk if you feel it necessary, unless you are in a congested commercial area

4. Maintain a reasonable speed and be predictable

5. Be respectful and aware of other vehicles. Just because you can see them doesn’t mean they can see you.