How To Lube Bike Chain: A Beginners Guide

How To Lube Bike Chain: A Beginners Guide to Bicycle Chain Cleaning & Lubricating

Maintaining a bike’s chain is very important as it enhances the bike’s performance and prolongs its durability. If you are a beginner bike rider and don’t know how to lube bike chain, then this article is for you.

Here, we have discussed why you should lube and the right process of lubricating the chain so that it’s easier for you to try it out at home rather than taking someone else’s help.

Why it is Important to Lube a Bike Chain?

A good quality lubricant will always extend the chain life of your bike. Dry chain causes more friction and hence, wears off much faster. It also rusts and corrodes in no time.

However, if you regularly put on chain oil, it would help eliminate the friction in the chain and make your pedaling less clunky and more comfortable.

Aside from extending the chain life, the lubricant also reduces noise so that you can enjoy a quiet and smooth-riding session every time you ride the bike.

Guide to Lube a Bicycle Chain Effectively

Now that you know the importance of lubrication your bike chain regularly, let’s discuss how to lube the chain effectively to prolong its lifespan.

Chose a Suitable Bike Lube

Before lubricating your bike's chain, first, you need to find the best chain lube according to your preference.
There are four different types of chain oil available in the market. Let’s discuss them in detail to understand which would be the best choice for you.

Type of Bicycle  Chain Lube: You Should Know


Finish Line wet lube

If you ride mostly in wet weather conditions, a wet lube, like the Finish Line wet lube, would be your best choice because it sticks to the chain and is not washed away by snow, rain or slushy roads.


Finish Line dry lube

On the other hand, if you live in an arid, dry climate and you will ride your bike only in dry weather conditions, then experts suggest you opt for dry lube oil.

A dry lubricant, such as this Finish Line dry lube, will repel dirt and dust and keep your chain cleaner and smooth.

However, because of the dry riding conditions, you will have to re-apply it frequently and keep the chain swift and smooth.


Finish Line wax lube

A wax lube, like the Finish Line wax lube, is your best pick if you use your bike to get around.

This amazing kind of chain oil is less messy than the others and therefore, it is very easy and convenient to apply.

Moreover, it also helps keep your bike chain cleaner than the other lubes you have used this far.



Another type of grease that can be used on the bike parts is the WD-40.

However, it’s not at all recommended to use it on your bicycle’s chain because it is a solvent and evaporates quickly, leaving the chain dry and brittle.

Clean the Bike Chain Properly

Once you have picked out the right kind of chain lube for you, now it’s time to apply it to the chain for a smoother and noiseless riding experience.

However, before using it, don’t forget to clean the chain properly for a precise application.

Again, for the cleaning purpose, find a suitable cleaner to clean your bicycle thoroughly. A cleaning solution like the Muc-Off MOX-904 Nano Tech Bike Cleaner would be an excellent choice to clean your bike from head to bottom.

First, spray the cleaner on a piece of cloth or rag. Make sure that you have sprayed enough cleaner to clean the stubborn dirt and dust easily.

Now, with the cleaner soaked rag or cloth, hold the chain precisely and start backpedaling the chain. When you do this remember that the chain should run through the rag.

Keep on backpedaling until the whole chain runs through the rag and the rag collects all the dirt from the chain. If required, slid it several times through the soaked cleaner cloth to ensure a super clean chain.

However, be very careful as there might be possibilities of your fingers getting in between the chain and chainrings. 

Apply the Lube

Once you are done and dusted with the cleaning session, now it’s time to apply the chain lube to keep the bike going smoothly.

First, shake the lube container thoroughly to mix all the ingredients completely before spraying it on the chain; there is a possibility that the different ingredients in the lube might have separated when you stored it for later use.

Now, start spraying the oil on the chain and start backpedaling it. Spray it well so that every link, every part of the chain get lubricated well. Keep pedaling the chain backward around the chainrings so that every part gets the oil.

After you are finished with the chain movement, slowly start shifting through the gears to make sure that the lube oil gets into the cassette gears and chain rings and lubricates them.

Then, with another clean cloth, wipe off the excess lube from the chain entirely. Remember not to escape this step because extra lube in the chain can attract dirt and dust and cause build-ups.

Wrapping Up

After reading the article thoroughly, we are sure that by now, you know everything you need to know about bike chain lubrication and how to apply it to prolong the life span of the chain.

Even though it is very beneficial for the chain, don’t use lube oil daily. Instead of increasing the chain's lifetime, this practice will help to damage the chain faster.

Reference: KZCLIP

About the Author Zachary Anderson

Hi, I am Zach who is behind I am a fitness geek. I love to ride bicycle regularly to be fit everyday. In winter when riding is impossible in cold then I love to workout at home using indoor exercise equipment. I also love to write in blog to share my knowledge in cycling & workout segment. I hope my articles will help you to be fit in any weather. Thanks!

Leave a Comment: