How to lube mountain bike chain (and how often)

A mountain bike chain has to endure a lot. It is exposed to different weather conditions and can come under great pressure. Proper maintenance of your chain is a requirement to continue cycling comfortably and safely. In this guide I discuss everything you need to know about lubricating an MTB chain!

Why lubricating an MTB chain is important

Lubricating a mountain bike chain is incredibly important. If you don’t do this, the chain will wear out quickly and may even break. And of course we shouldn’t think about that when we ride uphill with a mountain bike. It is not only good for wear and tear to lubricate the bicycle chain regularly. With a well-greased MTB chain you can also cycle more comfortably and shift gears more easily.

Reasons to lubricate your chain:

  • Reduce the chance of rusting
  • You last much longer with a bicycle chain
  • The chain will break less quickly
  • Reduced gear and derailleur wear

So let’s quickly see how best to grease a mountain bike chain.

Requirements: Dry lube vs Wet lube

To lubricate a chain, you must first have good chain lube. There are two types of chain lubricant for bicycle chains: for dry (Dry lube) and wet (Wet lube) weather conditions. Dry lube dries after lubrication, Wet lube remains wet. The big advantage of Wet Lube is that it lasts longer: even in wet weather.

Lubricating mountain bike chain step-by-step

Before you lubricate a mountain bike chain, it is important that it is first cleaned properly. View the MTB chain cleaning manual for an extensive step-by-step plan. Chain clean and dry? Then you can follow the steps below.

  1. Make sure the rear wheel is off the floor

    Use an MTB stand or mounting bracket so that the wheel can rotate freely.

  2. Put the bicycle chain in the lowest or highest gear

    This is important to clean all gears (and therefore gears) tightly after lubrication.

  3. Take the chain lube (wet lube or dry lube) and hold the end against the chain

    Try to start with the missing link, so that you know exactly when you have had all the links.

  4. Gently turn the MTB pedals with your hands so that the chain grease gets on each link

    Squeeze the lube bottle gently so that a drop of lubricating oil gets all over the links of the bicycle to lube mountain bike chain

  5. Let the mountain bike chain pass each gear blade

    After the bicycle chain has gone around a few times, shift to the next gear until you have gone through all the gears.

  6. Remove any excess lubricant from the chain

    If you see large amounts of lubricant (which, for example, drips from the chain), it is smart to remove this.

How often should you lubricate an MTB chain?

The big question is of course how often you should lubricate a mountain bike chain. Is this after every mountain bike ride or only when it is really dirty? It is recommended to re-grease your bicycle chain after every good cleaning. If you clean your mountain bike well, you will also use degreaser. A lot of chain lube can be lost during this process.

Frequently asked questions about lubricating an MTB chain

Why should you lubricate a mountain bike chain?

A lubricated chain is important to be able to keep shifting properly. In addition, the chance of a chain breaking is a lot smaller.

What is the difference between Wet Lube and Dry Lube?

Wet Lube is a chain lubricant that you can use in humid weather conditions. This chain lubricant stays on the chain longer. Dry Lube is best used when it is dry.

How often should you lubricate an MTB chain?

You should re-lubricate the MTB chain with every major cleaning of your mountain bike. There is a good chance that you have washed the lubricant off the chain.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *