Are Bicycle Cleats Universal?

April 08, 2022 5 min read

Bicycle cleats are an important piece of kit when you're cycling, if not essential. Not only do they ensure that your feet don't slip off as you pedal or shift your weight around, but they also help you to pedal more fluidly, making you more at one with the bike.

But cycling shoes with cleats already built-in can be hard to come by, and it's far easier to simply buy a set of cleats that will attach to the underside of your preferred shoes.

In this article, we're going to talk all about shopping for bicycle cleats, and whether bicycle pedals and cleats are universal. We'll also introduce you to some of the bicycle cleats we have in stock that may be worth checking out.

(Please feel free to jump ahead to any section that stands out for you.)

Here goes!

Are Bicycle Pedals and Cleats Universal?

It would be great if all bike pedals and bike cleats were universal, wouldn't it? It would make cleat shopping so simple and easy.

Well, there's good news and bad news on this front. Let's get the bad news over with first…

It turns out that not all bike pedals and cleats are exactly the same, and there sometimes are differences between different bikes.

However, I'm pleased to report that certain bike pedals and their compatible cleats are pretty much standard across the board. The most common pedal and cleats are SPDs, and they're about as close as you can get to a universal standard.

In our next section, we're going to cover some of the most common types of cycling cleats.

Are there different cleats for different clip-in pedals & shoes?

There are basically two main types of clip-in pedals, and these are known as “three bolt” and “two bolt” cleat systems.

Most Common Types of Cycling Cleats

Shimano SPDs

The most common type of cycling cleat is the SPD (also known as Shimano SPD). They're relatively cheap and easy to find, and they work well with many different kinds of shoe styles.

You can get them in different sizes, which is perfect for those families sharing a bicycle.

They also tend to be very durable, meaning they can take a lot of wear and are unlikely to break down soon after purchase.

One thing to note, though – they're not ideal for very high-performance riding. This is because they're designed to fit snugly under the ball of your foot, rather than being loose enough to allow for extra movement.

So, if you want to go for something a little higher performance, then you might consider getting a pair of Shimano M820s instead. These are similar to the SPDs, but they offer a slightly looser fit.

Another popular option is the clip-on cleat, such as the ones from Shimano or SRAM. They're usually quite expensive, but they look really cool and give you plenty of options for attaching your cleats.

Look Bike Cleats

Look pedals are an older, somewhat classic style, but still very popular among cyclists.

There are two main lines of cleats in this range, known as Delta and Kleo. They look very similar to each other, but aren't identical. The Delta variety tends to be used more for indoor bikes such as Peloton, while the Kleo variety is intended more for outdoor bike use.

There are other types of cycling cleats available too, including toe clips, clipless pedals, and even specialized models for racing.

Now let's move onto the fun part – shopping for your new pair of cycling cleats.

Shopping for a pair of bicycle cleats

When buying a set of cycling cleats, you want to choose one that fits properly and feels comfortable. You might also want to make sure that they provide adequate support for your feet while pedaling.

You also want to make sure that the cleats are strong and sturdy. Cleats will eventually wear out, and it's important that you get your money's worth out of them until you decide to replace them.

How to Choose Bicycle Cleats

Here are some things to keep in mind when choosing a pair:

1) Size matters

Cleats come in varying sizes, and it's important to pick the right size for your feet. If you have wide feet, then you may need a larger cleat than someone who has narrow feet.

2)Weight matters

It's important to pick a weight that suits your needs. Some people prefer lighter cleats, while others like heavier ones.

3)Durability matters

Make sure that the cleats have been made using quality materials. Check that they look and feel solid.

4) Comfort matters

Look at how the cleats sit on your shoes. Do they slide around easily? Are they comfortable?

5)Price matters

It doesn't matter what kind of cleats you buy, but it does matter how much you pay for them. Make sure that you don't spend more than you should.

6)Compatibility matters

This is an important consideration. You'll want to make sure that your shoes will accommodate the cleats you've chosen. For example, if you have flat pedals, then you'll probably need a cleat that is compatible with these.

7)Think about safety

Bicycle cleats can help prevent injuries to your feet. However, they aren't always 100% safe. It's important to make sure that you use them correctly so that they won't cause any problems.

8)Get spares

Bike cleats are often sold in pairs, which is handy. But once you've identified which ones you need/want, it's even more handy to have a spare pair. That's why we sell our bike cleats as a set of 4.

Everbeam Bike Cleat Sets 001 

These cleats will work with bothShimano SPD and Look X-Track pedals.

They're good all-rounder cycling cleats, suitable for everything from spinning programs right the way through to mountain bike adventures!

They also happen to be interchangeable with equivalent name brands.

What's more, it comes with all the hardware and tools you need to get them fitted.

Everbeam Bike Cleat Sets 002

These cleats will work withLook Delta pedals.

The great thing about these high performance cleats is that they fit most cycling shoes and they adapt to your cycling style.

What's more, you can fit them in minutes, and they come backed by a money-back guarantee.

Everbeam Bike Cleat Sets 003

These cleats will work withShiman SPD-SL pedals.

These are the perfect cleats for bike racing with, because they're just amazing where power transfer is key, giving you on edge for both speed and control.

They also happen to be interchangeable with equivalent name brands. What's more, it comes with all the hardware and tools you need to get them fitted.

Wrap Up

If you want to buy cleats for your bike and have never bought any before, we would recommend that you check your bike pedals first to determine what cleats you need for your bike, and go from there.

The easiest way to check this is by taking your bike to your local bike store to get them checked. Once you know what pedals you have, you can determine what cleats you need, and from there you can then go ahead and shop online.

Our Everbeam bike cleats are of excellent quality and can be trusted and relied upon, and would make an excellent choice provided that they are compatible with your bike.

And if you're lucky, you might even catch one of our occasional sales!