What is Motorcycle Chain Lube and Which is the Best One?
Unless you want to be left stranded on the roadside with a snapped chain, lubing your motorcycle chain is one maintenance task you really can’t afford to skip. Motorcycle chain lube will keep your chain free of rust and running as smooth as a dream. There’s a bit more to it than that, obviously, but simply put, spending just 30 minutes a week cleaning your chain with a quality lube will make a world of difference to your riding experience. Here, we look at exactly what you need to know about motorcycle chain lube and which one you need to buy.
What Are The Benefits Of Motorcycle Chain Lube?
The benefits of motorcycle chain lube are manifold. Lube up with a quality product and you can expect:
- A Clean Chain: Unless you’re riding in a bubble, you’re going to come across plenty of dirt and dust on your travels. Unfortunately, not all that grime stays on the road. Lubing your chain dissolves any solid particles of dirt that could spell trouble down the line.
- Enhanced Water Resistance: Water is one of the biggest enemies of motorcycles chains. A quality chain lube will form a protective barrier, reducing the corrosive effects of water and increasing the lifespan of your chain.
- Increased Life Span: Fact: a dry chain wears out at four times the rate of a lubricated one. If you want to avoid the expense of replacing your chain far more often than you need to, lube up.
- A Smoother Ride: As thedrive.com notes, lube reduces friction and enhances the movement of the rear wheel. The result? An easier time navigating sharp bends, superior performance, and an altogether smoother ride.
What Types Of Motorcycle Chain Lubes Are Available?
When it comes to motorcycle chain lube, it’s not simply a case of picking by brand. There are actually two different types of lube available, each with their own unique set of pros and cons.
- What: A highly viscous fluid that forms a moist barrier.
- Best For: Humid, muddy or wet conditions, and winter riding.
- Pros: Has superior ‘sticking’ power and is less likely to wash away in wet conditions. Less frequent applications.
- Cons: Soaks up dust and grime easier than dry lube and can eventually cause discoloration of the chain.
- What: A thin fluid that dries to form a protective film
- Best For: Dry/ dusty conditions and summer riding
- Pros: Non-tacky. Repels dust and dirt.
- Cons: Expensive. Doesn’t last as long as wet lube so requires more frequent applications. Chains need to be cleaned prior to application. Takes several hours to dry.
Dry Lube Versus Wet Lube
Both wet and dry lube both have their advantages. Neither one is free of disadvantages either. As to which one is better… as pedalchile.com says, it really depends. Dry lubes don’t offer the same protection against friction as wet lubes, resulting in a less smooth ride. Dry lube also requires more frequent applications and takes up to 4 hours to dry, putting you out of action in the meantime. Wet lube, in comparison. delivers excellent protection against friction and longer-lasting sticking power. On the other hand, they can suck up dirt like there’s no tomorrow. Really, there’s no deciding factor: if you’re struggling to pick, simply base it on your driving conditions. Match dry lube with dry conditions and wet lube with wet conditions and you can’t go far wrong.
How Is It Applied?
Lube comes in one of two different forms: spray and paste.
Spray lubes comes with the convenience of a spray nozzle, which offers simple application and the ability to cover a wide area with relative easy. On the downside, it tends to be more expensive than the alternative.
Paste lubes are highly viscose, stick around for a long time, and excellent penetrative powers. On the flipside, application can be tricky and despite the initial outlay being less than it would for spray lube, you’ll ultimately end up using more paste per application that you would spray.
The Best Motorcycle Chain Lube – Runners Up
Before we get to our top pick, honorable mentions go to:
- Maxima Ultimate Chain Care Kit: You’d expect one of motorcyclistonline.com’s top picks to be great value, and you’d be right. Containing everything you need to clean, lubricate, and protect your chain, this multi-purpose care package delivers on every front.
- Motorex Chain Lube 662 Strong Street Spray: With a spray nozzle for easy application, a white cast so you can see exactly where you’ve already sprayed, and superb resistance to spin and high pressure, Motorex Chain Lube 662 Strong Street Spray is one of the best examples of a dry spray out there.
- WD-40 Multi-Use Lubricant: WD-40 has excelled themselves with this multi-purpose lubricant that’ll work as well on your door hinges as it does on your bike chain. As well as removing any grease, grime, and gunk from the surface of the chain, it acts to stave off corrosion by leaving a protective shield against moisture and other corrosive elements.
- ProGold Prolink Chain Lube: Water, dirt, mud, and grime quiver in the face of this powerful lubricant. Suitable for all weather conditions, it does everything a lube is meant to: prevent corrosion; clean away dirt; reduce friction; and deliver a smooth ride.
- Lucas Oil 10393 Chain Lube: If you’re in the market for something cheap and cheerful, check out Lucas Oil 10393 Chain Lube. Despite being one of the most affordable lubes on the market, it still delivers effective protection against dust and dirt along with efficient performance on the road.
Our Best Buy
DuPont is a name every biker knows. With the Teflon Chain Saver, they’ve lived up to their good name with a dirt-resistant dry lubricant that comes with the added value of Teflon and Moly for wear protection. After going on wet, it dries to form a waxy film that, despite feeling tacky to the touch, somehow manages to repel every speck of dirt and dust that comes its way. The water-repelling nature of the added Teflon, meanwhile, means you can kiss goodbye to water corrosion for good. If you want a product that delivers superb performance and doesn’t charge the earth for doing, this is the lube for you.