Shad Bikes

Are you one of those who enjoys every bike route to the fullest? Are you passionate about feeling the wind on your face and the freedom that your two-wheeled companion gives you? If so, you surely know that cleaning the chain is an essential ritual for your bike to function correctly and allow you to enjoy each kilometer to the fullest.

Why is it so important to clean your bike chain?

Prevents premature wear

Dirt, dust and grit act as an abrasive that wears down the chain, chainrings, sprockets and derailleur. Cleaning the chain regularly reduces this wear and extends the life of the entire transmission.

Improve performance

A dirty chain generates friction, which forces you to exert greater effort when pedaling and reduces the efficiency of the transmission. Cleaning the chain eliminates friction and allows you to pedal more smoothly and fluidly.

Reduce noise

A dirty chain is usually noisy, especially when changing gears. Cleaning the chain eliminates noise and allows you to enjoy a quieter, more pleasant ride.

Prevents breakdowns

Dirt buildup can cause the chain to bind or break. Cleaning the chain regularly prevents these breakdowns and allows you to enjoy greater peace of mind on your routes.

How often should you clean your bike chain?

How often you should clean your bike chain depends on several factors:

climatic conditions

If you live in an area with high humidity or dust, you will need to clean the chain more frequently.

The type of terrain you are driving on

If you often ride on muddy or sandy terrain, you will need to clean the chain more frequently.

How often you use the bike

If you use the bike frequently, you will need to clean the chain more frequently.

Know more

Essential materials for impeccable cleaning

Before you begin, make sure you have your personal cleaning kit on hand. Don't worry, you don't need a large investment or sophisticated tools. With a few basic items, you'll be ready to get your chain shiny and ready for action.


This product is the unsung hero that removes grease, dirt and debris built up on the chain. You can find specific degreasers for bicycles in specialized stores or even in large stores. Remember to choose a biodegradable one to take care of the environment.

Chain brush

A good brush is your best ally to remove the most stubborn dirt. There are different types of brushes, but we recommend one with nylon bristles that do not damage the chain. Specific brushes for cleaning chains have two sides: one with harder bristles to remove dirt and another with softer bristles for a perfect finish.


An old rag or microfiber towel will come in handy to wipe off excess degreaser and dry the chain. Choose a material that does not leave lint on the chain.


A bucket or container will allow you to deposit the used degreaser and prevent it from contaminating the floor. Remember to use a container with a lid to avoid product evaporation and unpleasant odors.


Protect your hands from contact with the degreaser by using latex or nitrile gloves. The health of your hands is important, so don't forget this element.

Lubricant oil

Once the chain is clean, it is essential to lubricate it to protect it from wear and ensure optimal operation. There are different types of lubricants for different climatic conditions. Choose the right one for your area and type of bike.

Steps to clean your bike chain

Follow these steps to leave your bike chain impeccable and ready to devour kilometers:


Choose a suitable place

Find a well-ventilated space with a surface that will not be damaged by the degreaser. Remember to protect the floor with plastic or cardboard to avoid stains.

Place the bike in a comfortable position

You can use an easel or turn it upside down. Make sure the chain is slack to make the process easier.

Equip your cleaning kit

Put on your gloves and have all the materials you need on hand.

Degreaser application

Apply the degreaser on the chain

You can do it directly on the chain or with the help of the brush. Apply the product evenly over the entire surface of the chain.

Let the degreaser act

Follow the manufacturer's instructions to determine the product's working time. In general, it is recommended to wait a few minutes for the degreaser to dissolve the dirt.

Brushing and cleaning

Brush the chain with energy

Use the brush to remove dirt and residue that has been loosened by the degreaser. Insist on the dirtiest areas, such as the links and sprockets.

Wipe off excess degreaser

Using a clean cloth, remove excess degreaser from the chain. Make sure there is no residue left that could attract more dirt.

Rinse and dry

Rinse the chain with water

You can use a hose or a container of water to remove the degreaser and dirt. If you use a hose, do so carefully so as not to damage other components of the bike.

Dry the chain with a clean cloth

It is important to remove all moisture from the chain to prevent rust. You can use a dry cloth or a hair dryer on low power.


Apply a suitable lubricant to the chain

Apply the lubricant while pedaling backwards so that it penetrates all the links. Choose a specific lubricant for bicycles and for the weather conditions in which you are going to use the bike.

Remove excess lubricant

Using a clean cloth, remove any excess lubricant that may remain on the chain. Too much lubricant can attract more dirt and dust.

Tips from Shad Bikes for impeccable cleaning of your bike chain

Do you want to become a master of cleaning your bike chain? Follow these additional tips from Shad Bikes to get a professional result and ensure optimal performance of your drivetrain:

Types of degreasers

  • Biodegradable degreasers: they are a more environmentally friendly option.
  • Citrus degreasers: they are less aggressive than traditional ones and have a pleasant aroma.
  • Specific degreasers for chains: they are formulated to remove dirt and protect the chain.

Use of specific cleaning devices

  • "Chain cleaner" type chain cleaners: these are devices that are attached to the chain and clean it using a system of brushes and degreasing liquid.
  • Chain cleaning machines: These are more sophisticated devices that use an ultrasonic system to remove dirt from the chain.

Safety during cleaning

  • Wear gloves to protect your hands from contact with the degreaser.
  • Work in a well-ventilated area to avoid inhaling degreaser fumes.
  • Avoid getting the degreaser in your eyes and skin.

Preventive Maintenance

  • Clean your bike chain regularly to prevent dirt from accumulating.
  • Lubricate the chain after each cleaning to protect it from wear.
  • Check the chain regularly for signs of wear and replace it if necessary.


Cleaning the chain is a simple task that will bring you great benefits:

  • Greater performance: reduces friction and allows you to pedal more smoothly and fluidly.
  • Less wear - will last much longer.
  • Less noise: a clean chain is a silent chain.
  • More security: it is less likely to break.

We hope that this guide from the Shad Bikes blog has been useful to you and encourages you to put these tips into practice. Your bike will thank you!