How to Clean Bicycle Chain


In any field, profession or vocation, one factor that separates experts and professionals from regulars and intermediates is that the experts know most of the details about their business. They make it their business to know facts that might be considered irrelevant in their actual day-to-day practice. All cyclers know the type of bikes they need for their terrains and the sort of bike features that work best with their style of riding. However, most cyclers are not particular about learning the importance of their bicycle parts. When you learn about the different parts of your bike and their respective importance, you are more likely to take better care of them. This will prevent future damage and allow you to enjoy your bike for an extended period. If you share these same views as a cycler, then you should know that one of the most important parts of any bicycle is the bike chain. The bike chain is the part of the bicycle mechanism that transfers power from the pedals to the drive wheel of a bicycle. Without them, you will not be able to move your bike. This is why you should strive to take very good care of them. In this article, we have presented with a step-by-step guide on how to go about this process. Enjoy!

Step-by-step guide on how to clean your bicycle chain like an expert

  1. Select your cleaning agent

You should select your cleaning agent specifically. If you have not cleaned your chain for a long time and it has gathered up a lot of grease and mud stains, then you can use a bike-adapted degreaser. However, if you clean it regularly, then the best choice will be an ordinary wash soap. The reason why you can use degreasers all the time is because they are designed to clean more thoroughly and harshly. This can affect the factory lubricant in the chain and it can eventually lead to rust.

  1. Select a comfortable but effective scrubber

Since you are cleaning a chain you have to clean with a small but hard scrubber. Bike manufacturing companies have been known to make tools just cleaning bike chains. You can easily get anyone online. However, if you don’t want to spend money on a specific brusher, any hard toothbrush or even hairbrush will suffice. Just make sure you are ready to use your energy and exert yourself when scrubbing.

  1. Start by cleaning the cassette

The cassette is the part of the bike holding the chain and you should take special time to clean it. You should start by shifting the bike gears so that the chain is on the other end of the cassette. Once this is done, you should pour plenty of degreaser or soap and clean out all the cogs thoroughly. You should make sure that all the dirt, grease and debris are completely removed before you proceed. When you are done with that process, you should shift the gears again so that the chain will go the other end of the cassette. When that is done, repeat the process again and thoroughly scrub the remaining cogs.

  1. Clean the chainrings

When you are done with the cassette, the next place you want to clean is the chainrings. The chainrings help to hold the chain together and they have most likely gathered the same grease and debris as the chain. Make sure you apply enough soap or degreaser and scrub till you are satisfied.

  1. Clean the chain

This is the most important part of the entire process. to clean the chain, you should apply a substantial amount of your cleaning agent to both sides of the chain and scrub thoroughly. You should make sure that all parts of the chain are covered in this process. You can use the chainring as a surface to push the chain against so you can cover every inch of your chain

  1. Gently rinse with clean water

After you have finished scrubbing everything, you should rinse it down with enough clean water. The reason why you need to rinse it gently is to avoid water from going into places that you don’t want it to enter. Unlike a motor vehicle that has sufficient coverings, a bicycle is open and if you use a high-pressured hose to rinse the chain, it might affect other important parts of your bike.

  1. Leave it to dry

Even though you have cleaned your bicycle chain and it is sparkling clean now, you are not done just yet. If you put your bike back into storage with all the water still flowing from it, you are exposing your chain to rust and you don’t want to do that. After you have washed your chain, give it ample time to dry; you should put it in a dry, cool area preferably. As an alternative, you can also use an air compressor to quickly dry out all the liquid inherent in the chain. Once the bike is dry, then you can apply your lubricant and give it that shiny look that you truly want.

  1. Lubricate your chain

Another major part of your bike chain cleaning process is the final lubrication. After you have cleaned your chain, then you would have to oil it. This is the only way you can make it come out perfect. You should apply a lot of lubricant on the chain, allow it to gloss over for a few minutes and then wipe off the excess lubricant. You should also lubricate in between the rollers and the plates to give it a complete effect. Once you are done with this, live it out for about an hour. You would be pleased with the results.


The bicycle chain is an overlooked but very important part of the bicycle. Cyclers are aware of this fact and that is why the best ones always do their best to keep their bicycles and bicycle chains in the best possible form. Cleaning your bicycle chain is not a difficult process, however, it is a regular one. You should set side a consistent time in your calendar to clean your bicycle chain and your whole bicycle if you have the time. In this article we have shown you the best way to go about cleaning your bicycle chain and we advise that you put it into practice soon enough. Cheers!