You just got your new bike and are excited to go for a ride. Perhaps you got a new hybrid or a beach cruiser electric bike. Whatever your choice of style, it is exciting to own a new one. But, when you get on and start moving, the chain slips. Slipping, also called skipping or jumping, is a somewhat common issue for bikes. Fortunately, it can be solved relatively easily.
The process for fixing a slipping bike chain is quite easy. Simply follow these basic steps to fix it.
What It Is
A chain slipping on bike gears can cause two problems. First, the chain may slip between gears when you are riding. Second, it may jump over a gear when you are trying to change gears. In either case, it can be annoying. Although skipping gears are not usually dangerous, it may cause a jolt or unexpected behavior, especially when you are riding at maximum speed.
What It Is Caused By
The cause of chain slipping is typically a loose cable. This can be caused over time because bike chains tend to stretch slightly. It can also be caused by the chain being installed with one too many links when it was manufactured. Finally, it may be a result of the derailleur tensioner (that small, additional gear on an arm) is not adjusted properly.
In some cases, slipping may also be caused by an overly tight chain. It may rarely be the result of a damaged chain as well.
How To Fix It
Fortunately, fixing a slipping bike chain is surprisingly easy. Plus, the process is largely the same on hybrid bikes, road bikes, electric bikes and everything in between. These are the basic steps:
- Place the bike on a flat surface where you can easily access it.
- While gently rolling the bike forward, adjust the derailleur down to the highest gear (smallest cog).
- Examine the chain for tightness. Look to see whether it is very loose or seems like it is stretched to its maximum potential.
- If it is very loose, remove the chain and take out a link. Then, replace the chain and move to step six.
- If it is very tight, remove the chain and add a link. Then, replace the chain and move to step six.
- If it seems about right, use the barrel adjuster on the derailleur to adjust the tension. This can be a case of tweaking it and testing. Getting chain tension right is like finding the right porridge for Goldilocks.
- Check that the bike can shift through all gears while riding without skipping.
- If the problem persists, the issue may be damage to the derailleur or chain. Inspect both and replace the part if needed.
Get the Right Bike for Your Needs
With the above process, you can fix your bike’s slipping chain. Having the right bike for your needs can be a great experience, especially when you take good care of it. Learn more about bike care and maintenance today. Then, find the perfect bike for your requirements. Perhaps you want a mountain bike or an electric commuter. Whatever your needs, a little research can help you find the perfect option.
Have you ever fixed a bike’s chain?
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