to top 10 table

Best Bicycle Chain Lubes Reviewed & Rated for Quality

last updated: Oct 08, 2020

Hear that? That weird creaking noise in your bike chain? Noticing any performance issues that come with that sound? Those are the surefire signs that you need to lube up your bike chain. We love to think of our bikes as this invincible exercise and transportation wizards, who will always see us to our destination with ease and quality. However, the truth is that these are still machines, still tools. And machines and tools can still break, or in this case, just need a bit of lubing up. But which lubricant is the best for your needs? Well, that’s what we’re here to find out. Grab your rags and prepare to get greasy, because we’re counting down the best bicycle chain lubes on the market today!

In a Hurry? The test winner after 11 hrs of research

icon
Dumond Tech
98.4/100 our score
Effectiveness
99
Ease of Use
98
Features
98
Versatility
99
Value
98
Dumond Tech
Why is it better?

Easy to apply

The effect lasts longer, so you don’t have to apply it as often

Affordable

In a Hurry? Editors choice:
Dumond Tech
Test Winner: Dumond Tech
Amazon Link
Researched Sources
10
Researched Sources
Reviews Considered
9250
Reviews Considered
Hours Researching
11
Hours Researching
Products Evaluated
15
Products Evaluated
Sorting Options
Effectiveness Ease of Use Features Versatility Value By Default
Rank
PictureProduct
Name
Rating
Shops
#1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
98.4
Effectiveness
99 %
Ease of Use
98 %
Features
98 %
Versatility
99 %
Value
98 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (27.11.20)
Amazon Link
$16.92
#2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
96.4
Effectiveness
98 %
Ease of Use
96 %
Features
96 %
Versatility
97 %
Value
95 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (27.11.20)
Amazon Link
$7.19
#3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95.6
Effectiveness
96 %
Ease of Use
93 %
Features
96 %
Versatility
97 %
Value
96 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (27.11.20)
Amazon Link
$13.13
#4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.2
Effectiveness
92 %
Ease of Use
96 %
Features
95 %
Versatility
95 %
Value
93 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (27.11.20)
Amazon Link
$18.89
#5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.8
Effectiveness
96 %
Ease of Use
90 %
Features
95 %
Versatility
91 %
Value
92 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (27.11.20)
Amazon Link
$12.77
#6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.6
Effectiveness
90 %
Ease of Use
94 %
Features
95 %
Versatility
88 %
Value
91 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (27.11.20)
Amazon Link
$13.39
#7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
90
Effectiveness
88 %
Ease of Use
92 %
Features
88 %
Versatility
94 %
Value
88 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (27.11.20)
Amazon Link
#8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.8
Effectiveness
87 %
Ease of Use
90 %
Features
90 %
Versatility
88 %
Value
89 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (27.11.20)
Amazon Link
$13.99
#9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
87
Effectiveness
90 %
Ease of Use
80 %
Features
93 %
Versatility
85 %
Value
87 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (27.11.20)
Amazon Link
$8.47
#10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84
Effectiveness
90 %
Ease of Use
85 %
Features
80 %
Versatility
82 %
Value
83 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (27.11.20)
Amazon Link
$15.99

BEST BICYCLE CHAIN LUBES REVIEWED & RATED FOR QUALITY

1. Dumond Tech

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
98.4
Dumond Tech
Amazon Link
Effectiveness
99
Ease of Use
98
Features
98
Versatility
99
Value
98
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$16.92
Pros:

Easy to apply

The effect lasts longer, so you don’t have to apply it as often

Affordable

Cons:

Can be messy if you aren’t careful

Starting off our list, we have easily one of the most well-regarded chain lubes known to cycling: Dumond. These guys have been around for a while, and so their Lite bike chain lubricant is the best lubricant you can find on the commercial market right now. What is it that makes it so amazing? Let’s find out.

Easy to apply

You’d think just rubbing some greasy substance on your bike chain wouldn’t be all that hard, but some lubes are concentrated too much and are thus more difficult to apply correctly. Fortunately, the concentration of the Lite BCL is low enough to still be effective, while also being much easier to apply than the leading brand.

Lasting effect

Directly contradicting what was said in the opening, this lubricant is a standout from its peers in that it does not need to be regularly applied to the chain in order to keep working. This lubricant is incredibly durable and lasts significantly longer than any of its commercially available peers.

Cost and value

This lubricant offers a fantastic price tag which is definitely a good deal for one of the best bike chain lubricants out there right now.

2. Finish Line Dry

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
96.4
Finish Line Dry
Amazon Link
Effectiveness
98
Ease of Use
96
Features
96
Versatility
97
Value
95
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$7.19
Pros:

Versatile - can be used on a variety of bike chains

Synthetic oil and Teflon formula makes for a longer lasting effect

Cheap in smaller sizes

Cons:

Very expensive in larger sizes

Next, we have Finish Line’s Dry Teflon Chain Lube. Now, Finish Line has been in this business for a long time and has made a lot of good, quality chain lubricant, including a wet equivalent to this lubricant which we’ll get into later down the list. But their dry Teflon chain lube still remains one of the best products they’ve ever put out.

Versatile

Some lubricant is meant for kids bicycles, and some are meant for hard as nails off-road bikes. Finish Line’s lubricant can be used on both, and that is the secret to this lube’s popularity. Not only that it works, which it does, but that it can work for almost anybody.

Synthetic oil and teflon

With a mixture of Teflon and various synthetic oils, this lubricant manages to achieve a long-lasting effect that, while not as durable as Dumond, will still last you a good long while.

Cost and value

This lubricant comes in a variety of sizes measured in ounces. So when looking for the cost of this lubricant, try to decide how much you need first and foremost and then go from there. You shouldn't expect to pay an arm and a leg for this product.

3. White Lightning Clean RIde

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95.6
White Lightning Clean RIde
Amazon Link
Effectiveness
96
Ease of Use
93
Features
96
Versatility
97
Value
96
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$13.13
Pros:

Self-cleaning

No oily film

More reasonable price range based on size

Cons:

Can be hard to get a consistent drip out of the bottle

Here we have White Lightning Clean Ride lubricant. A self-professed “self cleaning” lubricant, this lube is special in that it looks like a liquid when you pour it out, yet feels dry to the touch. But that’s not the only trick this lube has up its sleeve.

Self cleaning

By self-cleaning, this lubricant means that you don’t really have to wipe it off afterward to take off the grime and dirt. Instead, all you need to do is ride around on it for a few minutes and let the lube do its job. The lubricant is automatically activated by the presence of dirt and grime, which it then absorbs by itself. The act of riding then makes the lubricant flake off by drying. Thus, a self-cleaning lubricant.

No oily film

The great thing about the lubricant being self-drying is that there’s no chance of the lubricant accidentally picking up dirt particles that are floating through the air. Thus the bike chain is cleaned and no dirt is left in its wake.

Cost and value

Like before, this lubricant comes in varying sizes, but unlike our #2 spot, the prices are much more balanced and make for a better deal. The price range depending on the size.

4. Rock N Roll It!

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.2
Rock N Roll It!
Amazon Link
Effectiveness
92
Ease of Use
96
Features
95
Versatility
95
Value
93
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$18.89
Pros:

Cleans and lubricates at the same time

Makes for a smooth and quiet ride

Cheap

Cons:

Doesn’t last as long as other lubes

It’s one thing to properly lubricate your bike chain, though, it’s another to clean it up. If the bike is still pretty dirty after you apply the lubricant, then chances are it won’t be long before it needs to be lubed up once more. This is where Rock N Roll It's Gold Chain Lubricant comes into play.

Simultaneously cleans and lubricates

Lubricating typically comes before or after cleaning, depending on what kind of lubricant you’re using. However, this lubricant can be applied without cleaning at all, because it does both of those tasks at the same time. Simultaneously lubricating the chain whilst removing any stains, dirt, and grime that’s built up.

Smooth and quiet

The two things you’re looking for after you lube up your bike chain is smoothness when you ride afterward, and for the chain in question to be utterly quiet while riding. This lubricant does both so well, you’ll start wondering whilst riding whether or not the chain spontaneously disappeared.

Cost and value

Not only does this lube come in different sizes, but also comes in packs of multiple bottles of the stuff. Luckily the price range that results from this isn’t too bad.

5. Finish Line Wet

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.8
Finish Line Wet
Amazon Link
Effectiveness
96
Ease of Use
90
Features
95
Versatility
91
Value
92
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$12.77
Pros:

Best used in extreme conditions

The formula is water repellent, reducing the risk of rust

Cheaper price range than its twin

Cons:

Cap could be sturdier

Here is another entry from this brand, Finish Line’s Wet Bicycle Chain Lube. The main thing that sets this apart from its cousin is, obviously, the fact that it’s a wet substance as opposed to a dry one. But is that all it has going for it? Not at all, as the following shall demonstrate.

Best for extreme conditions

Making this lubricant wet ironically makes it perfect for extreme weather conditions, like if you have to leave your bike out during a thunderstorm. The wet materials give this lubricant a cling like no other that certainly dwarfs its dry cousin.

Water repellent

One of the most common causes of bike chain failure is erosion and rust from the water like the rain. However, what makes this lubricant so perfect for such extreme conditions is that the formula used to make it is made of high viscosity oils, anti-wear additives, and most importantly, water repelling polymers that help to keep the elements off of your bike chain.

Cost and value

Like with its dry variant, this lubricant comes in a variety of sizes, from 2 oz to 1 gallon. The price range is reasonable, however, no matter what size you choose.

6. Finish Line 1-Step

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.6
Finish Line 1-Step
Amazon Link
Effectiveness
90
Ease of Use
94
Features
95
Versatility
88
Value
91
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$13.39
Pros:

Fast and easy application and effect

Removes the gunk left behind by previous lubricant applications

Cheap

Cons:

Only really effective on-road bike chains

Keeping on Finish Line for one more entry, we have the 1-Step Bicycle Chain Cleaner and Lube. Like it says on the proverbial tin, this lubricant reduces the usually tedious process of lubricating and cleaning your bike chain down to just 1 step. How does it do this? The answer is very simple:

Fast and easy

This lube lives up to its name as early as the first application, digging into the chain and flushing out all dirt and grime that it finds. Thus lubricating your bike chain, as well as cleaning it thoroughly. But that’s not all it flushes out.

Removes old lubricant

You heard that right, even previously applied lubricant can prove the downfall of your bike chain if you aren’t careful. Like anything left out in the sun too long, the lubricant, if not properly removed, will rot and dry in the sun, gunking up your chain all over again. The 1-step removes and flushes out all old lubricant materials you may have missed during your last cleaning, leaving nothing but a clean and tidy bike chain behind.

Cost and value

The price of this lubricant depends entirely on the bottle size you choose. It comes with a reasonable price tag, however, regardless of what size you decide to go with.

7. Park Tool

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
90
Park Tool
Amazon Link
Effectiveness
88
Ease of Use
92
Features
88
Versatility
94
Value
88
best offer for today
Amazon Link
Pros:

Works whether wet or dry

Versatile - Can be used on multiple parts of the bike

Cheap

Cons:

Only comes in one size, and it’s rather small

In our #7 spot, we have the Park Tool CL-1 Synthetic Blend Chain Lube. Though it may be situated at a lower spot on this list, make no mistake, this is still a very high-quality chain lube that will get you out of many a tight spot.

Work dry or wet

While this dichotomy is so stark with other lubricant companies, that they just decided to sell two different versions of the same product to compensate, the CL-1 runs laps around them by just making a formula that works in all conditions. Using its own blend of oils and PTFE, this lubricant will work wonders no matter what the weather conditions may be.

Versatility

Your chain isn’t the only part of your bike that needs lubing up. There are plenty of other mechanisms on your bike that will need some loosening up from time to time. Luckily, this lubricant works on everything from spoke nipples, to cables, to even the derailleur and brake pivots.

Cost and value

This bottle only comes in one size, though thankfully it’s very cheap. This lubricant will help you keep your bike running at peak efficiency, without breaking the bank in the process.

8. Bike Medicine Purple Extreme

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.8
Bike Medicine Purple Extreme
Amazon Link
Effectiveness
87
Ease of Use
90
Features
90
Versatility
88
Value
89
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$13.99
Pros:

Superior mileage

High film strength

Reasonable price

Cons:

Gives off an odor that some may find overwhelming

Starting off the final 3, we have the Bike Medicine Purple Extreme lubricant. This is one of the highest-rated lubricants out there, with several industry awards to its name, and it doesn’t take long to see why. This is easily one of the most efficient bike lubricants you can buy today.

Superior mileage

This lubricant will give you the best mileage out of any other entry on this list and is easily the biggest point in its favor. Applied correctly, and you will gain over 400 miles of smooth operation before ever needing to apply the lubricant.

Also worth reading bicycle speedometer

High film strength

Low film strength can actually do more harm than good to your bike chain, which is why bike lubricant companies make good film strength one of their top priorities. And among them, the Purple Extreme stands as one of the best in that regard, with a film strength that guarantees no harm will come to your bike chain when you apply this lubricant.

Cost and value

Obviously, such a high-quality lubricant would cost a bit more, but thankfully the price isn’t much. This lubricant may cost a wee bit more, but it’s definitely worth the money.

9. RocRide Eco-X

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
87
RocRide Eco-X
Amazon Link
Effectiveness
90
Ease of Use
80
Features
93
Versatility
85
Value
87
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$8.47
Pros:

The unique formula makes cleaning a breeze

Biodegradable

Affordable

Cons:

A bit too thick for some chain types

In our second to the last spot, we have RocRide-Eco-X-Best-Bicycle-Chain-Lubes Premium Chain Lube. This lubricant isn’t as well known, which is a real shame, because it is a genuinely good product. It works wonderfully, it’s priced well, it’s just a good bottle of lubricant.

Unique formula

Not only does the formula used to make this lubricant allow it to be used whether wet or dry, but it also makes cleaning a breeze by making the oils able to be washed off of the chain with little more than w quick spray of water.

Biodegradable

Ever accidentally spilled some lubricant on the grass and immediately felt the environmentalist part of you wretch with shame? Well, don’t worry, as this lubricant is completely biodegradable, so if you spill some on the ground, you don’t need to worry.

Cost and value

This lubricant only comes in two sizes, either 2 or 4 ounces, and thus has a small price range. However, it’s still pretty affordable.

10. Muc-Off C3

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84
Muc-Off C3
Amazon Link
Effectiveness
90
Ease of Use
85
Features
80
Versatility
82
Value
83
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$15.99
Pros:

Biodegradable

Uses no petroleum in its formula

Can last you weeks

Cons:

Pricey

Finishing off our list, we have Muc-Off C3 Dry Ceramic Lube. Don’t let the fact that it’s at the bottom fool you, though. We went through dozens of other lubricants before we settled on this one, so it’s still a winner in our eyes. What exactly did it do to get so far ahead? Read on to find out.

Biodegradable

This is a great lubricant to use if you care about the environment. Because of the specifically chosen synthetic oils, and the lack of petroleum used in the formula to make this lubricant, you can breathe easy knowing that any accidental spills won’t hurt the environment in any way.

Longevity

Yes, you do have to apply more lubricant every couple of weeks or so, but that’s a long time, especially if you rely on your bike as your primary source of transportation. So not only will this lubricant last you several weeks after application, but it will also last you even longer as a source of lubrication because you won’t be using it nearly as often.

Cost and value

Like other choices in this list, this bottle comes in a variety of sizes. Which is where we get to the main flaw with this lubricant: the price. Not that it’s too high, but when put against other, more reasonable deals on this list, it can be a bit much. For lubricants that, put simply, run laps around Muc-Off’s entry, it becomes expensive by comparison.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Effectiveness

You shouldn’t have to deal with a bike that doesn’t run smoothly. It’s about as uncomfortable as a bike can possibly be without removing the seat and making you sit on the pole. But when the chain starts acting up, that’s when the smoothness of your ride suffers. It runs slower, the pedals might get caught, etc. so you need to look for a bike chain lube that has smoothness as one of its selling points. After all, you’re buying this thing so that your bike chain will run easier, so that should be your top priority when choosing bike chain lube.

Ease of Use

We live in the 21st century, the age of convenience has been here for over 20 years. So things like lubing up your bike chain should not take as long as they used to. Fortunately, lube manufacturing companies have access to more complex synthetic oils that, when put together correctly, do just that. The best bike chain lubes require little more than a small application, with the lube doing the rest. And just like with application, removal should be just as simple. If lubrication is left on the bike chain for too long, it can actually end up hurting the chain in the long run, gunking up the chain and slowing you down. Fortunately, most lubricants are easy to clean off, either with a quick rub down with a rag or even just spraying them with a hose.

Features

Cleaning and lubricating used to be two different parts of the process, but thanks to modern technology and increased knowledge of oils and synthetics, many manufacturers have learned how to mix the two together into a single substance. Because of this, many lubricants have come onto the market with the ability to both lubricate and clean, all at the same time. If you are the impatient type, who doesn’t particularly care for the process of knowing when to clean and when to lubricate and which to do first, then these types of lubricant are your best bet for getting the most out of your bike chain lube.

Versatility

Your bike chain isn’t the only part of your bike that needs to be lubed up every once in a while. Yes, it needs it the most often of all, but your cables, pivots, and other such areas also require lube when they get too much gunk in their systems. However, if you don’t have the money to spare to pay for a lubricant for all of those other areas, then you’ll have to rely on bike chain lubricant that can be used on other areas. These types of lubricants didn’t always exist, but they’re growing in number as the years wear on now that we know how to make them. Lubricants this versatile are a must have for the passionate bike owner or pro cyclist. After all, it’s easier to keep track of one bottle of lubricant than 5 or more.

Value

Bike chain lube typically does not cost you all that much, usually only costing about $10-20 at most. However, that’s only if you’re looking at the bottle units measured in ounces. Meanwhile, a larger amount, like the 1-gallon units we saw in earlier entries in this list, can cost up to $100. So, if you’re only looking for smaller amounts for your bike chain lube, the cost won’t be an issue, so you’re free to look for the one of the highest quality instead.

Expert Interviews & Opinions

Most Important Criteria (According to our experts opinion)
Sort criterias acording to:
Experts Opinion Editors Opinion Users Opinion By Default
Click on a to rate the most important criteria:
#1
ico Effectiveness
Rate This Criteria as Most Important
#2
ico Ease of Use
Rate This Criteria as Most Important
#3
ico Features
Rate This Criteria as Most Important
#4
ico Versatility
Rate This Criteria as Most Important
#5
ico Value
Rate This Criteria as Most Important
expert tips icon
Keep Your Bike Running Smooth

Whether wet or dry, bike chain lubricant has been around for quite some time. Correctly lubricating your bike chain is something you need to learn how to do as soon as you start regularly riding a bike, and is a habit you need to adopt just as quickly because if you want your bike to run efficiently, this will be a full-time thing for you.

Use Correctly

Is lubricant perfect? Even to this day, no, as nothing is. They use some chemicals that are harmful to the environment and can be harmful to you if consumed. If applied too thick, or not washed off properly, they can actually do more harm than good to your bike. However, the points in their favor more than make up for that, as any pro cyclist can attest.

Other Factors to Consider

Use

Unless you have the money to buy a gallon of lubricant every time you need it, then you’ll have to rely on the smaller ounce bottles. And these things don’t have nearly as much lube in them as the big bottles, only carrying a few ounces. Now granted, it does not take a whole lot to lubricate a bike chain, but you will have to keep applying the stuff whenever your bike chain begins seizing up. This is where the concept of longevity comes in. If you go through the trouble of lubing up your bike chain, you reasonably want that lube’s effects to last for a few days or even a few weeks. Fortunately, the best lubricants understand this and try to make their lubricant last as long as possible between reapplication. So when you go to buy lubricant for your bike chain, look for how long each bottle of lube will actually last you.

Bottom Line

When you ride a well-lubricated bike, you suddenly get why so many people devote their entire lives to this little vehicle, when there are other, faster vehicles sharing the same road. There’s something about the smoothness of a good bike, how it helps you exercise without you even knowing it. People use these to get to work or school all the time and have done so for decades. True, we didn’t always have bike lube then, but when we did get it, these already useful contraptions got even better, because now, we didn’t have to worry about leaving it out in the rain, or accidentally dropping our bikes in the dirt. Because if they got dirty and the chain started acting up, we could just apply some lubricant and make it all better.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: What are some of the things I’m going to need in order to properly lubricate my bike chain?

a:

Actually not all that much. The most you’ll need to perform bike lubrication are two cloth rags and a water hose to help clean afterward. You’ll use the first rag to clean off your bike chain, if you aren’t using a lubricant that doubles as a cleaner, of course, with the help of the water. After that, you then apply the lubricant to the chain to get it nice and smooth. This process isn’t hard, but it can get tedious and time-consuming if you have places to be.

q: What is the difference between dry and wet lube? I’ve seen bottles of both but they both looked like liquids?

a:

The differences manifest when you actually apply the lube to the chain. Starting with dry lube, this lubricant looks like a liquid when you apply it, yes, but that is not the end. Once you apply it, you’ll notice that the lubricant quickly dries into a waxy substance across the chain. This is the lubricant acting as a sponge for the dirt and grime between the chain’s links, sucking up what it can and making your bike chain work better.

Then there are wet lubricants. The obvious difference here is that there is no drying after you apply it to your chain. Instead, the lube remains a liquid, lubricating the chain and in some cases, protecting it better from elements like rainwater. However, if you don’t clean it off, and instead leave whatever machinery you lubricated it with unattended for a long enough time, then the lube will almost always morph into this nightmarish, black gunk that clogs up the chain.

Both of those eventualities are why it’s imperative that you get a bike chain lubricant that also cleans off previous lubricant applications from the chain. Otherwise, the very thing you got to help your bike run faster and smoother will end up damaging its ability to do either of those.

q: So which is actually better than the other?

a:

Ah yes, the new player to this game. Indeed, in recent years, a nice middle ground has been found in the form of ceramic lubricant. Like dry lubricant, it dries on the bike chain shortly after application, but unlike dry lube, it can take a bit more punishment. Not enough to put wet lubricant out of business, of course, but enough to make it worth considering. Ceramic lubricant tends to veer on the more expensive side, but in exchange offers better performance with fewer bouts of maintenance.

Sources

  1. Editorial Team, Cyclist, Cycling Blog
  2. Editorial Team, REI, Editorial Team