Taking Proper Care of Your Bike Chain

TAKING PROPER CARE OF YOUR BIKE CHAIN

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Bike maintenance is a simple task you can do by yourself at home with some simple equipment and accessories. It's also a lot easier and more fun than you might think! In this series of bike maintenance articles, we share various tips with you to keep your bike in tip-top condition. This time, we have some tips to clean and maintain your bicycle chain.

Taking Proper Care of Your Bicycle Chain

Why the need to care for our bicycle chains?

Firstly, the chain is one of the most heavily used parts of the bicycle, as it transmits power from your legs to the bike.

As most modern bikes use multiple gears, there is also the additional issue of wear and tear from constantly shifting up and down the sprockets.

Thirdly, the conditions that many bikes are put through like rain and mud exacerbate the problem even more by introducing elements like water and dirt.

So it's no surprise that chains are built really tough to withstand the rigors of cycling, but we still need to take care of them every once in a while!

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Equipment you will need to get started

1. Chain cleaning brush OR chain cleaning tool

2. Rag (an old cotton t-shirt or towel will do)

3. Degreaser solution

4. Bike chain lubricant

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enclose the chain

Enclose the Bicycle Chain

- Leave the wheel on the bicycle unless you have a "chain keeper" tool which allows you to spin the crank without catching the chain

- Open the chain cleaning tool. It uses a tensioned wire latch, so you might have to apply some force

- Enclose the chain within the two halves of the chain cleaning tool and snap it shut

Fill in the Degreaser

- Find the opening at the top of the chain cleaner

- Pour the degreaser liquid into this opening

- Make sure to only fill it till the "FILL" line

 

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Clean the Bicycle Chain

- Hold the chain cleaning tool by the handle firmly with your left hand

- With your right hand, hold the pedal and spin the cranks forward at about 60RPM

- Keep spinning until you see the chain start to get clean

- Don't forget to spin the crank backward as well

- You will also notice the degreaser turning black as it removes dirt and grime from the chain

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wipe chain

Wipe the Bicycle Chain

-Remove the chain cleaning tool

- Discard the used degreaser fluid safely

- Wipe the chain well using a rag

- Make sure to remove as many traces of degreaser fluid from it as you can

- You may want to leave the chain for 5-10 minutes to let any residual degreaser evaporate

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Lubricate the Bicycle Chain

- Lubricate the "inside" part of the chain that makes contact with the sprocket

- Carefully apply lubricant to the chain, making sure not to squeeze too hard

- With your other hand, slowly rotate the cranks to move the chain along

- If there is any excess lube on the chain, wipe it away with a rag

And that wraps up the third part of our series on bike maintenance. We hope you found this article useful, and stay tuned for the next part!

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