Check out our recommendations for the 3 best fixie chain lubes below.
1. Park Tool Synthetic Bike Lube
A dependable fixie chain lubricant that works great in wet or dry conditions, manufactured by a highly reputable company.
Chain Lube from One of the Greats
If you’ve spent any time fixing your bike or even thought about DIY bike work, chances are you’ve heard of Park Tool. They’ve been around since 1963, and they’ve probably been making bike lube since around then.
Much has changed since that time, and their lube is now made with a PTFE and a proprietary blend of oils designed to reduce friction and increase the working life of your drivetrain.
Best of all, you can use this stuff on spokes, nipples, and even to lubricate the inside of your brake lines.
2. Finish Line Dry Bike Lubricant
Quality fixie chain lube with added Teflon to prevent dirt and debris from getting into your chain links.
Fixie Chain Lube with an Innovative Twist
Most bike lubricants just coat the chain, but this one dries to create a “wax-like” film that protects your components from dirt.
The problem with wet lube is that it can absorb some of the dust and dirt that irritates your chain. Once it’s absorbed, the dirt can make its way into the chain links.
Finish Line’s Teflon Fluoropolymer Dry Lube solves this problem. It also repels moisture, which other lubes don’t do since they are wet. This stuff is quite versatile so you can use it for all types of riding. It’s even compatible with derailleurs, shifters, cables, and more.
3. Phil Wood Tenacious Oil
Premium oil from a legendary company. This is the stuff to buy if you want the best.
The Ultimate Oil for Protection and Durability
This might be THE best fixie chain lube.
It might be a bit pricier, but if your bike demands the best you need to give it Phil Wood Tenacious Oil. While the company is probably best known for it’s wheel hubs, they lived up to their reputation when they developed this chain oil.
Any components that have metal-to-metal contact will love this stuff. In addition to the base oil which nicely coats and sticks to your chain, they add rust inhibitor to make sure your moving parts don’t seize up.
Phil Wood oil is rated to generally last longer on your chain than other oils on the market, so you won’t have to re-apply it unless your bike gets very wet.
Why Do Fixie Chains Need Lubrication?
Although Fixed Gear Bikes require far less maintenance than geared bikes, one bit of care you can’t neglect is keeping the chain lubricated. Fixie riders – especially the ones who don’t run brakes – depend on their chain more than any other cyclists. That’s why keeping the fixed gear cog, chainring, and chain properly lubricated is an essential part of maintaining a fixie.
Chain lube keeps your fixie’s chain running smoothly and moving efficiently. Good chain lube increases the working life of a bike chain and chainring. Keeping your chain in good working order is especially important on a fixie because riding fixed puts more stress on the chain.
No. WD40 is a degreaser, which is not the same as chain lube. You can use WD40 first to clean the dirt out of the chain, then apply chain lube to make the drivetrain run smoothly.
First clean dirt and gunk off the chain with a rag. Take an old tooth brush and pour a few drops of lube onto the bristles. Slowly turn the pedals while holding the brush to the chain until you have an even film of lube coating the chain.
Why is Lubricating Your Fixie Chain Important?
A well-lubricated chain runs quieter, lasts longer, and is less likely to attract dirt and grime. It also keeps your drivetrain running smoothly and serving you longer. Best of all, it’s a relatively simple task that only takes a few minutes to complete.
So what’s the best chain lube for fixies?
There are a few different types of chain lubricants on the market, and each has its own advantages and disadvantages. The most important thing is to choose a lubricant that’s compatible with your bike’s drivetrain.
How Do I Lubricate My Fixie Chain?
The best way to do this is to place your bike on a stand. If you don’t have access to a stand, just flip it upside down so that the chain is accessible. The goal is to be able to turn the pedals without the wheel touching the floor.
Step 1: Prepare Your Equipment
Once your bike is in place, prepare your lubricant, grab an old toothbrush, and get an old rag that you don’t mind getting dirty. If you don’t have a toothbrush handy, you can apply the lube directly to the chain in step 3.
Step 2: Clean Your Chain
If your chain is dirty, start by spraying it with a bit of degreaser. WD40 is the most commonly used degreaser and works just fine in this application. Once you’ve turned the pedals a few times and worked the degreaser into the chain, grab your rag and grab the chain with it.
Grab just hard enough to maintain even contact with the chain while letting the chain run through your hand when you turn the pedals. Make sure the rag doesn’t get caught in your fixie’s cog or chainring.
Hold the rag to the chain for a few revolutions of the pedals. If there are any particularly dirty spots you can spend a bit more time on them. If they chain is really dirty, consider getting a brush to remove grit and dirt from between the links.
Step 3: Apply the Lubricant
Remember, degreaser is not a lubricant. Make sure to clean it off with your rag. Use a clean one if there’s too much dirt on the one you used to clean the chain.
Next, squeeze a few drops of your chosen bike chain lubricant onto the toothbrush. Less is more. You can always add more later.
Now hold the toothbrush to the chain while slowly turning the pedals to move the chain. Once you’ve done a few turns of the pedals, move the brush to the other side of the chain. If the chain is dripping, you’ve used too much lube.
The chain should be glistening with a thin film of lube. Put the toothbrush away and spin the pedals a few more times to let the lubricant work into the links, and you’re done.
Repeat the process once a month or so. Remember, it’s important to keep your chain clean and well-lubricated if you want it to last as long as possible. A little bit of care and maintenance will go a long way towards keeping your bike in good condition.