Waxing your bike chain is one of the best ways to ensure that it stays clean and to give it a new lease on life. So, when should you use bike chain wax?
What is bike chain wax? Why should you use it? When should you use bike chain wax? What are its advantages? This article will explain what bike chain wax is, take you through the waxing process, and list the benefits of waxing your bike chain.
Bike chain wax is a type of lubricant that comes in paste instead of liquid form. It is designed to clean your chain and prolong the lifespan of your bike. You should wax your bike chain whenever it starts to sound squeaky after traveling 250 miles or every time you have a wet ride.
In this article, we will look at what bike chain wax is, what it is used for, the advantages of using wax instead of other types of lube and the process of waxing your bike chain and drive train.
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When To Use Bike Chain Wax
Ideally, your bike chain should last between three to four years, and allow you to travel 3000-4000 miles. However, different factors affect how long your chain will last including the type of bike you have, conditions you ride in, you and your bike’s weight and how well you take care of your bike.
Bike chains on mountain bikes and other bikes that ride on rough terrain tend to wear out faster due to the amount of friction they encounter in these terrains. In addition, dirt and debris will embed into your bike chain when you drive in these conditions, resulting in faster wear and tear. Riding in wet terrain is another risk factor for quick bike chain wear and tear. Finally, irregular cleaning, lubing and waxing of your chain will mean that it wears out faster than other bikes that receive the requisite care.
Waxing your bike chain is among the best ways to remove dirt and debris from the hard-to-reach areas in your chain and drivetrain. Regular waxing slows down the wear and tear of your chain and has been shown to increase longevity almost threefold.
What is bike chain wax, and how does it work?
Bike chain wax is a type of lube that comes in a thick paste instead of liquid form like other types of lubes. Waxing involves submerging your chain in pot of molten wax, removing it and allowing it to dry for up to fifteen minutes before reinstalling it on your bike. Waxing leaves a hard layer of wax on your bike chain and prevents dirt and debris from getting into your chain’s rollers and pins. This reduces friction and increases your chain’s longevity.
Bike chain waxing process
The process of waxing can be a tedious one but it results in a super clean chain that lasts longer and performs better. Waxing involves several steps that must be followed sequentially in order to ensure that the wax works properly. The first step involves deep cleaning your chain and drivetrain thoroughly in order to remove dirt and debris. You can also use a degreaser at this point in order to remove grease and deeply embedded debris.
Next, dry your chain and drivetrain thoroughly using a microfiber cloth. By this time, you should also have heated your bike chain wax of choice to the temperature indicated on the tube. Drop the cleaned and degreased bike chain into the melted wax or silicone liquid and allow it to submerge completely. Move it around in the wax a few times in order to remove air bubbles. Finally, remove it from the waxing container and hang it to dry before reinstalling. Ensure that you only remove the chain when the wax is as close to hardening as possible in order to ensure firm coating.
Why should I wax my bike chain?
Waxing has several advantages for your bike chain. First of all, waxing results in a thorough clean of your bike chain and removes dirt and debris from even the hardest-to-reach parts. As a result, you end up with a shiny and spotless chain and drivetrain.
Secondly, removing the dirt from your chain means lower friction between the chain and drivetrain, ultimately resulting in a longer lifespan for your bike’s driving components. This also means that you will not need to keep replacing your chain and drivetrain on a regular basis.
Waxing saves you money as reduced friction means reduced wear and tear of your bicycle parts which means that you spend less on repairing and replacing parts.
Bike chain lube vs. Wax – which one should I choose?
Lube and wax are both categories of bicycle lubricants that are designed to clean and lubricate your bike for better performance. The main difference is that wax usually comes in a pasted that can be dripped on your bike chain or melted to allow immersion. Lube on the other hand can be wet, dry or ceramic. It can also come in aerosol form.
Choosing between wax and other types of lube should be determined by their pros and cons. Dry lubes are easy to apply and are ideal for dry weather but have the disadvantage of washing off quickly, especially in wet conditions. Wet lubes are good for wet weather because their viscous consistency allows them to stay on your chain longer. Their main disadvantage is that they pick up more dirt.
Ceramic and wax lubes are the longest-lasting options since they are designed to hold on more firmly to your bike chain. As a result, they offer protection for longer, result in greater longevity for your bike and save you money since you will not need to apply them very frequently or replace bike parts due to friction.
About THE AUTHOR
Mountain biking is more than just a hobby for me - it's a way of life. I love the challenge and excitement that comes with it, and I'm always pushing myself to go faster and ride harder. Some people might think that mountain biking is dangerous, but I see it as the only way to live.Read More About Danny Lawson