Best Bike Lubes Reviewed & Rated for Quality
A lot of people think that any old household oil or lubricant will do the job, but using a lubricant that's designed for bike parts has a lot of advantages. Since they're designed especially for bikes, they're better at handling the near constant movement and exposure to dirt and dust that a bicycle chain experiences during your ride, reduce long-term wear and tear, all while saving you money and time on maintenance and keeping your bike on the road where it belongs.
We researched and rated the top bike lubricants on the market today, so that you can find the one that's best for you and spend more time riding and less figuring out what the best product is. So scroll down and read on to find the top 10 bike lubricants, and we'll see you on the road or trail.
- Finish Line
- DuPont Teflon
- White Lightning
- ROCK N ROLL IT!!!
- WD-40 BIKE
- Park Tool
- Dumonde Tech
- Gorilla Bike Oil
- Muc Off C3
- Criteria Used for Evaluation
- Other Factors to Consider
- Frequently Asked Questions
Top 10 Bike Lubes
1. Finish Line
Can be used in all types of conditions
Does not attract dirt or grime
Will prolong the lifespan of your chain
Difficult to apply due to water-like viscosity
This is one of the best and most well-known types of lubricants that is out on the market today. It's used and respected by many athletes to maintain their bikes. It works wonderfully in a variety of conditions as long as it is used in the right way. Although it's considered a dry lubricant, it goes on wet and then dries to a wax-like protective surface.Read more
It will be wet when you first apply it. However, after a while, it will dry up to form a wax-like film structure that will help keep your chain clean at all times since it does not attract dust.
The contents of this lube will improve the performance of your bike and polish the surface of your chain to make it look and operate as good as new.
Cost and Value
If you love cycling on the roads as well as off-road, you will not find anything better than this product. It will prolong the efficiency of your ride in any kind of cycling conditions.
Softens, cleans and removes dirt contaminants
Can be applied on hard to reach areas
Protects moving parts against rust and wear and tear
Prolongs chain life to minimize maintenance and repair costs
Poorly designed container
The Tri-Flow lubricant is designed with a formula that will help soften, clean and eradicate dirt and other contaminants from the bicycle chain. As an athlete who is looking to improve your running game, this will help maintain your gear and improve your workout routine.Read more
This oil has a light viscosity that makes it easy to apply, even on the hard to reach moving parts of the gadget.
Advanced PTFE Additives
The additives in the lubricant lengthen the protection this product provides against rust, corrosion, moisture and the damage that may result from friction on the moving parts of the bicycle.
Cost and Value
With this affordable lubricant, you will not have to worry about extreme temperatures and their effects on the product. It provides optimum lubrication all the way through your chain. The product is also easy to apply and it has good penetration when applied to access the hard to reach areas of your bike's moving parts.
3. DuPont Teflon
Leaves no stains behind once applied
Water-resistant and will not easily come off in the rain
Protects moving parts against wear
Does not attract dust
Low viscosity makes it run off the parts it is applied to
Compared to several other varieties that are available on the market, this product is really easy to use. It will help you maintain your bike for a long time to come, and is from one of the most trusted names in high-quality lubricants.Read more
This product will help keep off dirt or dust. Therefore, it is best used in dry conditions.
This brand contains elements such as Moly and Teflon that help protect the moving parts wearing out regardless of how long the bicycle will be used.
Cost and Value
This item would definitely give you good value for your money. The product leaves no stains behind when it is applied and is water-resistant, something that guarantees the consumer a fun time when cycling in any conditions.
4. White Lightning
Sheds off dirt to leave the bicycle running smoothly
Easy to apply
Doesn't attract dust
It can be a bit messy if not left to dry after it is applied
White Lightning comes in a dropper bottle so not only is it effective in keeping your chain working well, it's also easy to apply. It goes on wet then dries to a thin film which protects without attracting additional dirt and grime.Read more
This lube will automatically clean your chain of any form of dirt or grime to leave it sparkling and moving smoothly.
The squeeze bottle makes it very easy to apply to the chains.
Cost and Value
For its price, this is a very good product to buy. Once applied the product leaves behind a wax film that will not attract dust or dirt. The product sheds off dirt while you're riding to leave the chain clean and running effortlessly.
5. ROCK N ROLL IT!!!
Can be applied to different kinds of cycling conditions
Cleans the moving parts to leave them sparkling
Reduces chain noise significantly
Wears off quickly
This versatile product can be used in all conditions especially rough terrain and track that most free runners are used to. It is appropriate for both road and mountain bikes.Read more
This product serves two functions when used on the bicycle. It lubricates the moving parts for improved efficiency and it cleans the parts on which it is applied.
This product guarantees the consumer a smooth ride with no squeaky sounds that may be quite irritating if not dealt with in due time.
Cost and Value
This product is priced as a good value. It will help polish the moving parts to make them look like new. Whatever terrain you plan to ride on, this lubricant would suit your smooth and efficient cycling needs.
6. WD-40 BIKE
Can be used in a variety of conditions
Easy to apply
Contains corrosion inhibitors that would prevent rust thus extending the lifespan of the chain
Minimizes friction thus improving efficiency
Poorly designed spray bottle
This lubricant will help improve the performance of your bike when used in varied weather conditions including wet and dry conditions. This product is easy to apply and it helps a cyclist minimize squeaks during their rides. Most important of all, it will prolong the lifespan of your chain if it is used in the proper manner.Read more
This product has corrosion inhibitors that prevent rust, improve performance and extend the duration you would use your chain.
This item prevents damage that may result from consistent friction experienced on the chains because it minimizes friction. It has no wax elements that may build up in the chain links to reduce efficiency. This product gives the consumer the confidence of being able to ride in any kind of conditions without worrying about the chains malfunctioning before the journey is complete.
Cost and Value
This brand has been tested and approved by professionals in different fields something that assures consumers of a quality product. Plus, it's still WD-40, which is awesome for using on all kinds of different things so it's multi-purpose and you get many uses out of it.
7. Park Tool
Easy to use or apply
Can be used in wet and dry conditions
Reduces friction and extends the lifespan of your gear
Attracts a few dust particles
This lubricant is very effective and sold at an affordable price. In addition, it is easy to apply making it the choice of many consumers, especially professional athletes with high-end gear.Read more
This product can be used in a variety of conditions whether wet or dry. You won't need to worry about the conditions when using this brand and can even use it when bike hiking.
The oil penetrates well on the moving parts to minimize friction and extend the lifespan of the parts.
Cost and Value
This product is necessary if you know what is good for your favorite equipment. The product easily displaces moisture to protect the moving parts from corrosion and rust that reduce the efficiency of your equipment.
8. Dumonde Tech
Designed for road bicycles
Dropper bottle lets you apply easily and efficiently
Helps clean the moving parts
This lubricant is specially designed for use with road bikes. However, you have to ensure that you use this product sparingly if you want it to serve your needs for the longest amount of time possible.Read more
Compared to numerous other chain lubrication products, this specific product is extremely durable and it will serve your needs for as long as you intend on cycling.
Easy to Use
When it comes to this type of product, it's important to see whether or not it's challenging to apply. No one wants to spend hours trying to learn - they just want to ride their bicycle! So, this product is quite easy to apply due to its well-formulated viscosity. It guarantees the consumer the maximum degree of performance once applied.
Cost and Value
Even with its high cost, the fact that it lasts longer, polishes the parts of your ride and that helps in ensuring that it runs smoothly should be sufficient reason to convince any buyer to go for this product. Besides, the product is stored in a dropper bottle that enables the consumer to use it sparingly since it has a low concentration that makes it easy to apply. If you use a road bicycle, then this is the greasing product you need. Furthermore, the formula lasts longer on the chain compared to countless other types that you would find sold in stores within your neighborhood or on online shopping platforms.
9. Gorilla Bike Oil
It penetrates well on the interlocks of the moving parts to enable adequate lubrication
The liquid is biodegradable thus making it environmentally friendly
It can be used in all manner of conditions
It does not wash away even in wet conditions
It has been tested and approved as a suitable product when used on the bicycle parts
It is very thick and sticky and may gum up the chain if it is not applied considerately.
It is not perfect when used in dry and sandy conditions since it attracts dirt easily
Some people may consider this product highly priced
This product has been tested and approved as suitable to be used even in extreme conditions due to its durability. This makes it a great lubricant for tough terrain workout bicycle maintenance.Read more
This brand is biodegradable and has no harmful solvents that will pose a danger to the environment. This makes the product safe to use.
Sticks well on the Surface
This oil will stay on even in wet conditions. The lubricant repels water to keep the chain dry until you clean the chains.
Cost and Value
This oil will save you money since it penetrates deep into the moving parts to protect the whole drivetrain so you end up spending less on repair and maintenance. You will not have to worry about replacing the moving parts when they wear out after a period of use. The majority of consumers use this brand and it has been tested and approved as suitable when used in both dry and wet conditions. Consequently, you would get what you pay for when you buy this product.
10. Muc Off C3
Easy to use
Not well packaged and may be damaged during the shipping process
This product comes highly recommended as an effective tool that can be used for the proper maintenance of bikes. Not only is it environmentally friendly but it also ensures the moving parts are well maintained.Read more
The elements used to make this product are biodegradable. Subsequently, even if the lubricant were exposed to the environmental elements it would not pose any harm to the surroundings.
Easy to Use
The nozzle of the can containing the solution is designed with a sharp and long edge that helps consumers to easily focus on the points on which it is to be applied. This minimizes the likelihood of the liquid dripping off the bike parts if it is not applied correctly. If you squeeze the dropper bottle gently and ensure that you focus the nozzle on the right places you would not only minimize the chances of misusing the product, you would also ensure that every moving part of your bicycle is lubricated for improved efficiency.
Cost and Value
Compared to similar products, this one is pretty reasonable. Besides, this product will help reduce friction between moving parts of your bike so you'll save money on repair and maintenance. With this product, you will not have to worry about the irritating squeaky sounds that are usually widely experienced in cases of poor maintenance.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Obviously, one of the most important criteria to look at when shopping for a good bicycle lubricant is its effectiveness at keeping your chain running smoothly. It needs to work and work well otherwise your chain won't operate efficiently, you'll lose power, the bike may squeak while you're riding it, and you'll end up spending more money on bike repair and maintenance than is really necessary.
Another important function that some, but not all, bike lubricants have is that they will actually clean and polish the chain while it's in motion, returning it to a like-new condition. We gave products that have this feature a higher effectiveness rating in our reviews, but it's not necessary to have this feature in order to make a bike lubricant high quality, it's more of an added bonus when it happens.
A good bicycle lubricant will be easy to use, not only for the sake of convenience and cleanliness but also because it makes it more likely that you will consistently use it on your bike. No matter how good a lubricant is, it doesn't do any good if you don't use it!
The products on our list come in either dropper bottles or spray cans, both of which are easy to use. We also looked at the viscosity of each product, because if a lube has a lower viscosity (is watery) it is more likely that not all of it will stick to the chain and it will fall to the floor or ground and possibly make a mess. We want you to enjoy maintaining your bike, not feel like it's an inconvenient and messy job, so we rated products that were both easy to apply and stayed on well with a higher ease of use score.
It's no good lubricating your bike chain only to have the effects last for less time than it takes to strap on your helmet. Most every bicycle lubricant is formulated differently, and it's that formulation that determines how durable and long lasting an application lasts. We strove to only include products on our list that reviewers have rated as being durable.
Formulations made specifically for road bikes tend to last longer than those made for mountain bikes. However, the ones made for mountain bikes typically do a better job of keeping large pieces of dirt and grime out of your chain because that's what is necessary when you're flying through some sweet single track kicking up dust. Conversely, road bike lubes need to last for the many, many miles that these type of cyclists will put on their bikes in a single training session.
If you often find yourself caught in the rain during a cycling session, or you live in a very rainy and/or humid environment, you should definitely take into account the amount of weather resistance each lubricant offers. You don't want to get caught in a little bit of rain or even just go through a couple of puddles and have all of your chain lubrication wash off.
Another thing to think about is if you are biking in a very dry place you will want to go with a dry lubricant. These go on wet but dry to a film-like layer. What's really great about this option is that it won't attract dust like a wet lubricant can. Dry lubes don't stay on as long however, and need to be reapplied much more often than the wet types.
If you're reading this you're most likely concerned with the value you'll be getting for your money. Unless you're Lance Armstrong and you can afford to buy just the best of the best all the time, it's important to get the most bang for your buck with any product you buy.
Some of the products on our list are more expensive than others, but they still offer you a great value or we wouldn't have included them. A couple of them are actually able to be used in several applications besides just on your bike, which makes them an even better value. Take a look at the value ratings in the review for each product to find out more.
Other Factors to Consider
The thought that the type of greasing element does not matter would most definitely leave runners wondering why there have to be numerous options of this product for consumers to choose from. Nevertheless, if you wish to have the best riding experience ensure that you sufficiently clean your chain and ensure that it is well lubricated. With this being said, it is also important that consumers shop for the right lubricant that would be suitable for different conditions and best for the brand type you ride.
Examples of lubricants that you would come across in the market include ceramic type, wet, dry and wax lube. However, even with the countless options that are available on the market today, this item can be categorized into two main groups that are, the dry and wet types. Make your choice based on what would serve your needs best and you would drastically improve your performance at the gym and on the track when cycling.
If you prefer the wet type for your bicycle then you should be ready to bear with the fact that the wet types attract dust more so if you usually drive through dusty pathways. When the dust accumulates over time, the chain becomes sticky to the touch and the dust particles would increase friction thus reducing the efficiency of the bicycle. On a positive note, a wet lubricant would be a sufficient tool when used in wet conditions. This type of maintenance application would require less application as it lasts longer on the chain.
This product is suitable when used in dry conditions. Compared to other brands that are currently available on the market, this particular product is the most versatile. Unlike the wet lube, this product does not attract dust, therefore; it never leaves the chain tacky or sticky. Nevertheless, the only demerit for using this make is that it wears off easily in wet conditions. The consumer is required to apply this brand regularly compared to the wet type that would last you the time.
This brand can be used in both dumb and dry conditions. Some of the advantages of relying on this type of lubricant are that it does not attract dust; it helps keep your chain clean and is less messy when applied to the chain. The only demerit of this product is that it requires consumers to reapply it more often than other brands.
The Ceramic Option
The ceramic brand is one of the most renowned bicycle lubricants available on the market today. You would find this particular type available in two options that include the dry alternative as well as the wet option. The best thing about this particular product is that it has nanoparticles that would formulate a protective layer on the chain. In addition, this increases efficiency by reducing the friction that would occur on the moving parts. Other advantages of having this type of product are that you would be required to reapply it less often, it would help prolong the lifespan of your equipment and it would help minimize the rate at which you would be required to service your ride. The only downside to having this item is that you would be required to spend more money on buying it compared to buying other types of wet and dry greasing formulas that are currently sold on the market. Nevertheless, if you desire a quality product price should never hinder you from shopping for the best items to serve your needs.
Long Distance Riding
If you love cycling and would ride for a long distance every day, it is advisable to buy a wet type to use in maintaining your chain. The only problem with this product is that you would be required to clean the chain area more often. However, if the pathway that you would use for cycling is dusty or sandy ensure that you buy yourself dry lubricant.
If you are a less frequent rider who would use the bike periodically during the weekends and when cycling for shorter distances to work, the wax type would be the best selection for you. Nonetheless, when applying the wax option ensure that you use it in, considerate proportions not to negatively affect the efficiency of the equipment. Too much of this product would gunk up the chains. If applied in the right quantities you would enjoy a smooth ride while keeping your chain clean at all times. Your clothes would stay clean even if you carry your ride when you use the wax lubricant.
Road Bikes vs. Mountain Bikes
As it has been stated earlier, the conditions in which you would ride your ride would determine the kind of lubricant you would select. If you plan on riding on the mountain areas under dry weather conditions the wax or dry formula would be the best choice since you are bound to come across much debris that may cloak your chain when you use the wet version. Rainy conditions require the use of a wet type. If you are biking on a very clean road, the best oiling solution that would last is the wet option even if you ride in dry conditions with no dust.
Spray or Drip
A majority of cyclists prefer the drip lubricant to the spray type. This is because the drip alternative allows the consumer to focus the substance on the chain joints without getting it to another place on the bicycle. It should be noted that most spray designs sold on the market today are designed with a nozzle that helps the consumer focus the contents of the holding cylinder to the right spot without making a mess. One advantage of the spray option is that it has enough air pressure that would force the liquid into the openings on the chain that may be difficult to access with a rag.
Frequently Asked Questions
As a cyclist, you should always ensure that you apply your chain lubricant in the correct manner if you wish to enjoy a smooth and efficient ride. The type that you would select in any given situation would all depend on several factors such as the time of the year you intend to ride your ride as well as the place you intend to cycle. For those who may be particular about cleaning their gear as often as possible and would prefer riding their bicycle in inclement conditions then the wet type would be the best choice for such a group of people. However, for the lazy and less frequent cyclists who often prefer riding in fair weather conditions, the dry brand is often preferred.
Depending on the type of lubricant that you buy, you may be required to lubricate your ride more often than you would expect. You do not want to find you smooth ride hindered by the friction experienced on the chains. A well-greased chain ensures that you have good speed and cycle with a reduced impediment. The lubrication process also helps maintain the bicycle to increase its lifespan. These products protect the chain from rusting and it prevents the squeaky sound that would be experienced with a poorly maintained bicycle.
The wet lubricant is just as the name suggests. This viscous liquid product would stick to everything it is applied to. However, when compared to the dry option, this product stays in its liquid form once it is applied to the chain. Nevertheless, when you apply the dry version, it would emerge out of the storage bottle wet. However, after a while, the liquid material would dry up to leave behind a waxy residue on the chain. The wax is what provides lubrication on the moving parts the product is applied to. If you plan to cycle on a dusty road then the dry option would be the best choice for you. However, for those people who often ride in wet conditions, the wet type would suffice. Ensure that you choose accordingly if you want the best outcome.
The rate at which you would clean and lubricate your bike would depend on a number of factors. This would be determined by the conditions in which you would ride, the amount of dust found on the path you would use and the state of the road surface you would cycle through. Generally, a properly maintained gear is one whose chains are cleaned and re-lubricated after 3-5 rides. Even with this being the case the frequency with which you would clean and lubricate your equipment would be determined by the conditions in which it is used and the distance covered in every ride. Nonetheless, if your chain accumulates dirt to ensure that you clean and lubricate it before going on a subsequent ride.
- Which Bicycle Lubricant is Best For Your Mountain Bike Chain?, Article, Feb 01, 2013 ,
- The Importance of Drive Chain Lubrication, Article, Feb 01, 2011 ,
- Bicycle chain lubricants - explained, Article, Mar 30, 2017 ,