When I owned a motorcycle, I didn’t give a lot of special care to my chain. But maintaining a healthy chain is a good idea. It can help maintain your bike gears better, and it helps keep your chain lasting longer. Cleaning your motorcycle parts can become a habit when scheduled into a weekly routine.
And as a part of this routine, you can inspect the chain and sprockets for wear and tear. About every 300 miles or more, it’s a good idea to lube your chain. If you ride a dirt bike, you’ll want to clean and lube your chain more often. The goal is to maintain a fairly clean and lubed chain for the best bike performance. While choosing the best motorcycle chain lube, make sure it is affordable, durable, easy to apply, and dust- and water-resistant.
There are several ways to clean your chain, but more of them involve getting the dirt and old grease off and applying new chain lube. Cleaning your motorcycle’s chain is also important for your safety since you can check for any chain damage and if it fits loose on your motorcycle. In only about 15 to 20 minutes, you can maintain this vital part of your bike.
Here are three motorcycle lubricants for you to review, so you can see which one can help you give proper maintenance of your motorcycle’s chain. We’ll discuss the pros and cons of each, and hopefully, you can find the one that’s best for you.
What Are the Different Types of Motorcycle Chain Lubes?
How a motorcycle chain lube works are that it penetrates deep into the chain’s moving parts and then clings to the metal to provide a protective layer and, ultimately, keep the chain drive running as smoothly as possible. Generally, the lube is made of a carrier fluid that contains particles that reduce friction. Here are some different types: dry, wet, and all-purpose.
1. Wet lubes
Wet lubes, as the name suggests, are specifically designed for wet and humid conditions. They feature a carrier fluid that contains a slightly higher level of viscosity. In other words, it stays in its original form even when you apply it to the motorcycle’s chain. It also clings a lot better, which would make it very difficult for you to wash off.
However, using wet lubes also has a disadvantage. Because of its formula, it tends to pick up grit and dirt more easily than other lubes. Using wet lubes for your bike’s chain would likely cause dirt and grit to cover the entire chain and the transmission. To prevent this from happening, we advise cleaning and maintaining the chain as frequently as possible.
2. Dry lubes
Dry lubes, on the other hand, contain slightly thinner carrier fluid. It evaporates once applied to the motorcycle’s chain but will leave the particles that reduce friction in its place. And as the name suggests, dry lubes work perfectly in dusty and dry conditions. This type of lube effectively lubricates and protects your chains and can be washed off easily.
3. All-Purpose Lubes
All-purpose lubes are a combination of both wet and dry lubes. Somehow, they compromise on some of the lube’s best features to suit general mixed conditions. It also proves useful for people who do not want to fiddle with their motorcycle’s chain that much. It should be noted, however, that using all-purpose lubes will require you to reapply them frequently.
Essential Factors to Consider When Choosing the Best Motorcycle Chain Lube
Before you go out to look for the best chain lube for your motorcycle, be sure that you have read this section, in which we discuss the important factors that need to be considered when searching for a good motorcycle chain lube.
If you are proactive in choosing the right chain lube, it will significantly impact your maintenance experience.
1. Kind of Chain Lube
The kinds of chain lube you may choose are aerosol and wax. Paste or wax formula proves to be easier, where you just apply the lube on the chain areas without making a mess. Aerosol, on the other hand, is for fast lube application, wherein you only spray the lube and then let it dry.
2. Chain Type
The second factor you should consider is the type of chain on which you are applying the lube. Normally, motorcycle chain lubes work better if applied to the right chain type. A standard unsealed chain will need frequent maintenance, while a seal chain type will last longer and need less maintenance. Sealed chains come in X, Z, and O-ring types.
O-Ring chains have been around for a long time and are cheap but tend to wear a bit faster. X-Ring chains are newer and tend to seal in lubricants better, keeping dirt out, and they create less friction under stress, so they last longer.
But getting a Z-Ring chain can be very helpful if you need a very hardy chain. They can work effectively in muddy and wet situations, making them more expensive, but they are great for off-road use. They tend to be stronger and might last longer, depending on how hard you push them.
3. Resistance to Dirt and Water
Another thing that you must look out for is that the motorcycle chain lube you choose is resistant to water and dust. You should also check if it provides protection against corrosion and rust. As you may already know, these elements are very stubborn and very challenging to remove. So, before it starts to accumulate, it would be better to have the protection your chains needs.
Even though it is entirely up to your preferences and budget, we advise you to carefully evaluate each product’s best features, advantages, and disadvantages before selecting which one to buy. Knowing which factors are important will also allow you to know the product’s true value.
Top 3 Picks for The Best Motorcycle Chain Lube
1. Maxima 74920 Chain Wax
The Maxima 74920 Chain Wax is a spray-based motorcycle chain lubricant. It works perfectly with normal chains and O-rings and provides the necessary protection for the sprockets. One great feature of the Maxima chain lube is that it keeps the chain drive clean. However, you should take note that it is based on paraffin, which is highly flammable.
While being flammable, just like kerosene, it has the capacity to keep your motorcycle’s chain more friction-free. In fact, the Maxima is one of the most popular chain lubricants on the market now, as well as one with the top ratings. You may choose different bottle sizes, ranging from 5.5oz to 162oz.
- Resistant to water and dust
- Made for O-ring chains
- Based on paraffin
- Keeps your chain clean and frictionless
- Easy-to-use spray bottle
- Comes in a variety of bottle sizes
- Contains anti-wear and heavy-duty additives
We consider the Maxima chain lube one of the best, as it is formulated with anti-wear and heavy-duty additives that effectively provides lubrication to your chain drive. This is a recommended product that you might want to give a try.
2. DuPont Teflon Chain-Saver Dry Self-Cleaning Lubricant
Considered one of the most popular motorcycle chain lubes right now, the DuPont is a very easy-to-use self-cleaning lubricant. You need to spray it and let it dry for a couple of hours. It is also water-resistant. In fact, you will not need any water when you apply this to your motorcycle’s chain.
It proves to be safe for all kinds of chains, may it be O-rings or X-rings. Another great feature of the DuPont is that it can withstand high temperatures and has more than one application besides motorcycle use. As for your motorcycle chain needs, we recommend trying this one out.
- The brand already has a good reputation in the motorcycle industry
- Resistant to water, as well as dirt
- Made for common types of chains, including O-rings and X-rings
- Dry wax
- Not messy to use
- Easy to apply
- Can withstand a temperature of up to 300 F
It would be safe to say that not only is DuPont the most popular product out there, but it is also one of the best. Truly, the brand lives up to its promise of delivering high-quality chain lube formulas for your motorcycle.
3. Motul M/C Care Factory Line Chain Lube
Did you know that the Motul motorcycle chain lube is specifically designed for both endurance racing, as well as road racing? Indeed, this chain lube has been created mainly with performance and efficiency in mind. The Motul chain lube will be able to lower the friction on your motorcycle’s chains.
However, you should know that it is not dust-resistant like the others. It would be better to not ride off-road and avoid dusty and dirty places. It is also proven to be compatible with common motorcycle chain types. If you engage in motorcycle racing, this might be the chain lube you are looking for.
- Compatible with most chains
- Resistant to water
- Perfect for road racing
- Lowers your motorcycle chain’s friction
- High-performance chain lube
- Easy to apply and use
This chain lube is great for motorcycles that ride on the road and want good protection for their chain.
If you are a fan of off-road racing, you can try the Motul Off-Road chain lube, which would be a perfect off-road chain lube for your motorcycle.
Choosing the best motorcycle chain lube will now be a bit easier now that you have read more about chains and lubricants.
There are the right tools for your bike and your personal preferences. I hope you can find the best chain lube for your bike. With the chain lubricant listed above, I hope you will be able to find what works for you and have a good experience with your motorcycle.