Bicycles are an amazing line of vehicles. They are compact and lightweight. So, you can zip through the road as fast as you’d like. But there are a lot of other things when it comes to buying and using one. Now, the most common question when it comes to maintenance is how long does a bike chain last?
Well, look no further because we have prepared this article on exactly that. You’ll get a complete overview of bike chains and everything surrounding them through this writeup.
In the article, we’ve talked about bike chains in general- how to maintain them and other variables when it comes to replacing them. So, let’s jump in, shall we?
How Long Does a Bicycle Chain Last?
So, let’s start off with the big question itself. But, to get the answer, you’ll need to understand the rest of the article, because the answer is never specific.
The Lifespan of a Bicycle Chain
Now, a bike chain can last from somewhere between 500 miles to even 5000 miles. But that depends on a lot of things such as your riding style, the kind of maintenance that you’re carrying out on it, and if you’re using the bike daily or every once in a while.
If you don’t go out that much with it, it’ll last years on an end with proper maintenance. But, if you go out on a ride with it every day, you’ll need to change the chains more often.
What Is a Bike Chain?
So, let’s see what bike chains actually are. Now, the reason we are covering this is that sometimes, even experienced riders won’t know the true purpose of this important component.
Bike chains are roller chains that power the bike wheels as you paddle through. It helps the bike move forward, overcoming the friction of the roads.
Without these chains, you’d have to peddle a lot more and that wouldn’t have been convenient, would it? So, bike chains are one of the most important parts of a bicycle.
Types of Chains
Now, bicycle chain comes in two main kinds, namely plain carbon steel and alloy steel. You might see other materials used. But those are solely to make the bike look flashy. The base is still one of the two kinds.
These chain types matter depending on your riding style itself. So, be very careful when you choose one for your bicycle. Believe it or not, it’ll make a solid difference to your experience. Hence, tread carefully while looking for chains.
Now, we’re in the main part of the article: the maintenance. It is the key when it comes to increasing the longevity of your bike. So, let’s see how:
1. General Maintenance
Firstly, you need to be concerned about the general maintenance of your bike chain. You’ll need to clean it regularly, and especially after riding on dirty terrain. Make sure you clean all the components, otherwise the chain will wear faster and break too early. Then, lube it properly to keep things running.
2. Riding Style
The maintenance depends highly on the way you ride the bike. If you’re a fast paddler, you’ll need to put in a little extra lubricant to make it wear less.
And, if you ride on rough terrains a lot, the durability of the chain might be hampered if you don’t clean it regularly.
3. How to Lube a Chain and When
Lubing is super essential when it comes to increasing chain life. So, make sure that you lube the chain regularly. The ideal time to do so would be once or twice a month.
Replacing the Chain
The chain need to be replaced when it’s been worn out about 50% or so. Make sure to do this if you want to keep riding consistently because the chain breaking in the middle of the ride can be a complete bummer.
When Should You Replace a Bike Chain?
In the best-case scenario, your bike chain will last 5-6 years if you play your cards right. But, the ideal time to make this change would be 4-5 years after installation.
You’ll have to do it earlier if you use the bike on a daily basis.
How Much Does It Cost to Replace a Chain on a Bike?
Bike chains range from $5 up to $100. So, if you’re a beginner, don’t go for the fancy chains, the standard ones should do. However, do seek professional advice when you make the purchase.
Top 5 Best Bike Chain on Amazon
That’s all we had to answer how long does a bike chain last. We tried to give in as much information as we could in the smallest sizes so that you don’t have to go elsewhere to find it.
Moreover, we hope that we could tell you about all that you wanted to know and made sure that you’ll be able to handle your bike chain on your own now. So, get out there and conquer the roads with your ride and become the one with the wind.
We would appreciate some feedback from you as well. So, if you felt like there was something that we missed, or if you have something else in mind that we can cover, please contact us.
FAQ’s on Bicycle Chain
What is chain wear?
Chain wear is when a bike chain tends to deteriorate with time. So, as you keep using the vehicle, it’ll keep getting worse in condition. Therefore, you might want to keep an eye out for it.
What causes mountain bike chain wear?
Compared to older chains, mountain bikes nowadays have more gears and thinner chains. Hence, they tend to wear faster and break more easily. So, try keeping an extra one around.
How do I extend the life of my mountain bike chain?
Proper maintenance is key when it comes to making a bike chain last longer. So, firstly, buy a good chain. It’s an investment for the long run. Along with that, use less pressure while peddling and clean the chain after every dirty ride. But don’t forget to lube the chain, which will decrease the wear.
How long does a mountain bike chain last?
A mountain bike chain usually lasts for 750 miles, provided that you ride on a single track. This might differ depending on the kind of maintenance you’re doing on the chain itself.
How often should I replace my chain?
With proper maintenance, your bike chain could last 5-6 years on a stretch. But that’s the best-case scenario. So, it’s better if you just change it every 4-5 years, just to be safe.
Should I replace my cassette when I replace the chain?
The answer to this one depends on things like how often you ride your bicycle and on what kind of terrain you do so. There are also other variables like the weight of the bike and its type. But you won’t need to change the cassette as much as you change the chains. So, getting a new cassette every 2-3 chain replacements should do the trick.