Maintaining your dirt bike is important, as if you look after your dirt bike, it’ll look after you on the trails. Knowing how to clean a dirt bike chain is an important aspect of up-keep and maintenance with your dirt bike.
Cleaning your dirt bike chain is actually really simple and will only take you a few minutes, but it will prolong to longevity of your chain for years to come.
If you don’t maintain your dirt bike chain, it can do damage to your chain and sprockets and they’re not cheap to replace, so a small amount of time using motorcycle lubricant can save you a lot of money and stress in the long-run!
Table of Contents
- What You Need To Clean Your Chain
- How Often Should You Clean A Dirt Bike Chain
- How To Clean Your Motocross Bike Chain
- General Motocross Chain Maintenance & Servicing
What You Need To Clean Your Chain
Before you get started its important that you have certain tools and products before you get started which are:
- Wire brush or grunge brush.
- Lubricating spray
- Dirt bike stand(optional).
Its important to also note down as a safe precaution that you switch off your engine, other wise this could cause injury whilst cleaning.
Moreover, its important that you check out other aspects of the chain area of the your dirt bike, these include its sprockets. This is because you can assess if your sprockets are damaged, as it will be the reason why your chain will be damaged.
Whilst checking for any damage on your sprockets, you should check the teeth for any indication of of them being sharp of spiky. If they are, then this is a clear sign of them being worn out, which means that you should replace the chain.
How Often Should You Clean A Dirt Bike Chain
This question can have many different answers, dependant on who you ask. A general rule is that every time you rider, especially if you’re doing a large ride, then you should definitely clean it.
In addition to that, its important the your use lubricant on your dirt bike the day or hours before you even ride, as it gives the oil time to soak in overnight.
However if you’re an adventure rider, you may not have the chance to do this. Although at the very least, ensure that you lubricate it after you have finished your journey.
How To Clean Your Motocross Bike Chain
People go about cleaning their dirt bike chain in two different methods. The first method is by keeping the chain on the bike, or you can add your dirt bike onto a stand and remove the chain.
Typically if you’re a hardcore rider who has been riding in thick mud, then the chain will be clogged with mud. So this means that the only option is to remove the chain from the bike to properly clean it.
The Quick Method Of Cleaning Your Dirt Bike Chain
Firstly you’ll need to put your dirt bike on a stand, so that you can raise the rear wheel off the ground. Next you’ll want to use a product that specifically is designed for this purpose, such as Motorex or Motul, these are all suggested by top riders.
You’ll find that a lot of chains these days use the ‘O’ ring, Motorex and Motul cleaners are specifically designed for this type.
Next you simply spray it around the inside and the outside of the chain, whilst you rotate the rear wheel for a full rotation, so that the chain surface area is all covered.
After that you will have to leave it for a few minutes, so that it can soak in. Then you’ll want to wipe off as much dirt and muck as possible. Many advised that you should use a stuff bristled brush, as it can get into the difficult spots of the chain.
The Best Method Of Cleaning Your Dirt Bike Chain
This method is a longer process than the previous method mentioned, although it ensures a full service of your dirt bike chain. This method involves removing your dirt bike’s chain, then submerging it into a container full of Kerosene. Then you’ll want to use a brush to give it a effective scrub.
The reason why you use Kerosene, is because it is an effective dissolving solution of old chain lubricant. This makes it a great alternative to an actual chain cleaner.
You’ll then want to use a hose to wash off any excess dirt with water. This is because the Kerosene will not remove dirt, but hot water will, or you can use an off the shelf chain cleaner.
Its important to bear in mind that ‘O’ and ‘X’ rings have lubricant inside of them, so to avoid damaging the rings, you should use an old toothbrush to deal with this. Alternatively, you could purchase an actual dirt bike chain cleaning brush.
How To Remove Your Chain
Its important that you have a pair of pliers, so that you can remove clip of the chain. Alternatively you could use a screwdriver, but this can be a sketchy solution as you can damage the ‘C’ clip on the master link.
Next you’ll need to simply place on side of the pliers on the pin nearest clip opening. Then on the other side of the pliers on the opening of the clip, you should then squeeze it together, so that the clip will slide off.
Finally, you’ll need to put the clip back on, you can do this by the same manner. But you’ll need to position your pliers on the pin at the other closed end part, then squeeze so that it can slide back on.
An important rule that you should remember is that, when you’re putting the clip back on, ensure that the opening is facing backwards in the direction of the rotation.
If you put it the wrong way, then there may be a chance that it can come off and drop your bike’s chain whilst riding!
Lubricating Your Chain
Its essential that when your dirt bike is on its stand, that you spray lubricant on the inside of the chain, whilst rotating the back wheel. Then also you’ll want to repeat this step but on the outside of the chain for a full rotation of the chain!
It’s not important to spray the side links of your dirt bike’s chain, but it is important to lubricate the rollers in the center of the chain(that run along the sprockets). Then you’ll need to spray some lube onto the ‘O’ rings so that they do not dry out either.
Its important that you do not over-lubricate your chain as too much lubricant will build up and flick and fall off the chain. This will then mean that it will just attract more dirt again!
General Motocross Chain Maintenance & Servicing
- Firstly, you should clean your chain often and especially after every big session.
- Moreover, you need to adjust your chain’s tightness on a regular basis.
- Do not use a pressure water, or hose too close to the chain. This is because water can rust-out the inside of an ‘O’ ring.
- Replace your chain, when you notice that the sprocket teeth are wearing.
By completing these steps, it’ll ensure that your dirt bike’s chain health is maintained and prolonged.