Riding a motorcycle is a thrilling affair. That joy that comes with taking road trips on your bike remains unmatched. However, there are some less exciting parts of owning a motorcycle, namely, maintenance.
Any bike owner will tell you that constant maintenance is imperative for smooth driving. Taking care of your motorcycle might seem tricky at first but once you get a hang of it, it is pretty simple.
Cleaning your motorcycle and knowing how to lube motorcycle chains is something every enthusiastic rider must do. Keeping the motorcycle chain clean is vital to the well-being of your motorcycle. However, it is not enough to just clean it; lubricating your chain regularly will keep your bike in top shape.
In case you have been worrying about taking on these tasks for the first time, don’t fret. Our article will help you cover everything you need to know about cleaning and lubricating your motorcycle chain. Let us begin by identifying the types of motorcycle chain available in the market.
Types of Motorcycle Chain
1) Y-Ring Motorcycle Chain
The locking pins and the plates of the chain are attached in a Y pattern.
These kinds of chains are unsealed and so, manufacturers nowadays do not prefer them. They require frequent maintenance and don’t last very long.
2) X-Ring Motorcycle Chain
As the name suggests, the rings holding the link plates together form a X shape. These rings are sealed and are a great choice for sturdy and long lasting chains.
3) O-Ring Motorcycle Chain
O-ring motorcycle chains are the most popular. The rings between the locking pins and plates are shaped like an O. These rings, like X-rings, are the best choice for motorcycle chains as they ensure that the lubricant stays between the plates and pins.
Sealed rings function much better than the unsealed ones.
After a considerable period of use, dirt gets accumulated within the link plates. This can cause corrosion between the plates, wearing out the motorcycle chain. In order to keep your motorcycle chain smooth and running, you must clean it often.
Simply cleaning the chain is not enough; you must keep your motorcycle chain well oiled. Lubricating the chain will prevent dirt and grime from sticking to the locking plates. All of this will ensure that your bike runs efficiently.
How to Lube Motorcycle Chain
1) Know Your Chain Type
The first thing you need to do is identify the type of motorcycle chain in your bike. This will help you decide on a cleaning approach that will suit the chain. Regardless of the type, the basic steps of cleaning and lubricating are similar for all chains.
Sealed motorcycle chains, also known as plain motorcycle chains, are easy to clean. Whereas sealed chains with rubber rings between the links require more meticulous cleaning and greasing.
2) Position Your Bike
Adjust your motorcycle to a convenient position which will allow you to access the bike chains effectively. Once you have placed your bike in a position that allows you to spin the chain, cleaning and lubricating requires little effort.
You can use your kickstand or a good motorcycle lift to arrange your bike accordingly. If placing the motorcycle is too difficult for you, you can simply remove the chain and clean it separately.
3) Apply Chain Cleaner on the Chain
Once you are ready to start cleaning your bike, get your chain cleaner out and spray it liberally all over the chain. Make sure to get all the nooks and crannies to clean all the dirt stuck to the chain.
Use a premium cleaner that will break down the grime and dust particles. This will get rid of all the dirt and your motorcycle will feel as good as new.
4) Brush the Chain
The only way to really remove all the layers of grime is to scrub your motorcycle chain thoroughly. Be careful not to leave any dirt behind as it will render all your efforts useless. Take your time and scrub all the sides of the chain rigorously.
Brushing your motorcycle chain well is very important as the dirt can reduce the lifespan of your bike and chain greatly.
5) Re-spray the Chain Cleaner
Any remaining dirt can be harmful to your motorcycle chain so spray your chain with the cleaner one more time. Don’t hesitate to use copious amounts of the cleaner as a properly cleaned motorcycle chain will go a long way.
This final round of spraying ensures that your motorcycle chains will be squeaky clean.
6) Wipe the Motorcycle Chain
The final step in cleaning your motorcycle chain is to wipe it down with a dry cloth. Cover all the surfaces of the chain and ensure that there is no remaining dirt or chain cleaner. Make sure that the chain is completely dry as the lube will not stick to a wet surface.
7) Lubricate the Chain
Lastly, all that remains is to lubricate your motorcycle chain generously. Select an efficient motorcycle chain lube to help your bike chain function without any issues. Apply your chosen chain lube on all sides of the chain and cover it uniformly.
This will allow your chain to perform better. Thorough lubricating ensures the longevity of your motorcycle chain.
In case you have a plain motorcycle chain, make sure to coat it with large amounts of lube. Sealed chains require comparatively less lubricating as the ring helps to lube all the links equally.
While cleaning and lubricating, keep an eye out for the condition of your motorcycle chain. This will help you determine any problems with your chain and address those issues accordingly. If your chain is really worn out, it is probably time to get a new one.
A motorcycle chain can be thought of as the backbone for your entire motorcycle. A well-maintained motorcycle chain supports your bike really well. We hope our article will guide you in taking care of your chain.
Now that you know how to lube motorcycle chains, get down to business before taking your bike for a spin around town. You will immediately notice the positive effects of lubricating your motorcycle chain properly.