How To Tighten A Bike Chain And Make Your cycling comfortable


For being an energetic cyclist. Undoubtedly, you’re experienced enough on how to enjoy cycling and maintain your bike. But do you have a better understanding the role played by your bike chain?

The bike’s chain is an essential part of your bike that plays an important role in transferring the power to the rear wheel and that is what makes the bike move forward.

Chains tend to loose over a period of time reducing the speed and pick up of the bike. Hence, to assist transform power into the motion with improved efficiency, a bike chain should be accurately adjusted.

It’ll be a critical situation for you if you don’t know how to tighten a bike chain.

Before learning how to tighten a bike chain, it’s also necessary to know what the reasons you should tighten the chain. There are several reasons such as:

  • To avoid chain slap
  • To prevent getting loose the chain and fall off
  • To keep from happening a major accident.

A very tight chain may cause the drive too difficult, and on the other hand, a very loose chain may slip off the front chain ring resulting in an unusual and serious loss of pedaling resistance.

Therefore, ensuring the correct chain tension lets the bike to turn efficiently and prevent the potential catastrophe caused by abrupt chain slippage.

Coming loose the chain is a common problem of a bike and fortunately, you don’t need to take your bike to the repair shop. Just learn what you’ve to do to tighten your bike chain.

How To Tighten A Bike Chain

For your convenience, here we’ve divided the process into two parts.

 PART 1:

Get The Tools

Before you tighten the bike chain, you’ll initially need some tools. Make sure that these tools are around in an easy to reach spot so that you take less time to complete the process.

Acquire The Bike Knowledge

Do you have the basic knowledge about your bike?

Yes. It’s essential to know the basics of your bike that will be the most helpful for you when tightening up the loose chain.

Learn the names of the parts such as gears, axle, chain, wheel, and derailleur.

Check out your bike and try to name the parts. To identify the parts physically, touch them as you learn them.

Things You’ll Need

  • Bike work stand (optional)
  • Socket wrench
  • Socket
  • Socket wrench adaptor
  • Lubricant
  • Rag

Socket Wrench

  • For the bolts on wheel’s axis
  • Need to loosen and tighten the bolts back into place


  • Need the correct socket that will fit the bolts.

Your bike may have smaller or bigger bolt’s than your friend’s bike has. So, you may need a different socket.

Socket Wrench Adaptor

  • If you have pegs on your bike, you’ll need it
  • It’ll help you to reach through the pegs and twist the bolts.


To maintain properly your bike, you need to regularly lubricant your bike chain. But after finishing tightening the chain you may need to care for the bHow To Tighten A Bike Chainike chain by giving it some lubrication.


You’ll need a clean rag. It will help you to clean the chain after you tighten it. You may need to wipe down any excess debris off the chain before lubricating it.


Tightening The Bike Chain

In this part, you’ll be able to learn step by step how to tighten a bike chain. You need to follow just a few steps, but overall, it’s very easy and simple to do.

 Step 1:

It’s better if you have a bike stand. But if you don’t have, just flip the bike over. Keep it on the handlebar and seat to prevent leaning or fall over. Elevate the rear wheel securely your bike upside down.

Step 2:

Loosen the bolts on the wheels by using a perfect size socket wrench and socket or adjustable wrench. Turn each of the bolts anti-clockwise. You don’t need to completely remove them. Just loosen the bolts adequately, so that you can easily drag back on the wheel.

If your bike has pegs, you’ll need to use the adapter on the socket wrench. along with, loosen the bolts from inside it. The bolts may not be seen on the pegs. Hence, you’ve to do the task only by touching it.

Once the wheel is loosened from its position, you are ready to continue the next step.

Step 3:

After you’ve loosened the wheel, place your hand on the outside center of the wheel and slide the wheel toward the back of the bike. This process will ultimately tighten the chain.

Pull back the wheel as far as you think it needs. Hold it in place without touching the frame of the wheel.

Step 4:

Check the chain for correct tension. Get your finger on the chain middle point along the Chainstay and drag it up and down. Keep up to move the wheel backward if necessary, and check the tension again.

Step 5:

Hold the wheel in place and tighten the nuts on the wheel with the socket wrench. Tight the bolts one side first, after that the other side. Continue to go back and forth between sides to make sure both sides are equally tightened.

Make sure to keep your wheel straight as you tighten both sides.

Step 6:

After finishing tightening locknuts and axle nut, Spray a little chain lubricant on the chain.

Flip the bike back over and check out the chain.


The dirty chain will create problems. So, wash your bike hence it gets dirty. A bike full of clay, dirt, oil or other debris makes it difficult to work on. Cleaning the bike chain properly it will make it last longer. A wire brush and a strong soap are enough to get the job done.


You’re now ready to roll!

You now know well how to tighten a bike chain simply and easily. It’s not your everyday task. Follow the steps when necessary. Just give attention to look at and clean the chain after every single ride. It’ll help you to prevent any major accidents and the chain will get a longer life.

Hopefully, you’re now confident enough in your ability to tighten your bike chain.

Go ahead!

Happy cycling!

Joe Carrow

Product reviewer & passionate blogger. Beside writing for this blog, I spend my time crafting research based contents for HuffingtonPost, Lifehacker & Forbes!

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