Revive Your Ride: How to Fix a Broken Bike Chain

Fixing a broken bike chain involves removing the damaged link and replacing it with either a new one or a quick link. To repair your bike chain, you’ll need a chain tool, a quick link, and possibly a new chain depending on the extent of the damage.

A broken bike chain can be frustrating and even dangerous if you’re riding when it snaps. Whether a link has become bent or broken, there are a few steps you can take to fix the issue and get back on your bike.

This guide will walk you through the process of repairing a broken bike chain, including the tools you’ll need and the steps to take to get the job done. Keep these tips in mind the next time you’re confronted with a broken bike chain.

Revive Your Ride: How to Fix a Broken Bike Chain


Understanding The Most Common Causes Of Bike Chain Breakage

Biking is a great way to stay fit and enjoy the outdoors, but a broken chain can disrupt your ride and even cause injury. Understanding the most common causes of bike chain breakage is crucial in preventing it from happening.

In this post, we will discuss the most frequent reasons for bike chain breakage and how to fix them. So, let’s dive right in!

The Role Of Corrosion In Chain Breakage

Corrosion is a common cause of chain breakage and can be caused by exposure to water, sweat, or moisture. The buildup of rust in the links can weaken the chain, making it more prone to breakage. To avoid this, make sure to clean and dry your chain regularly.

Also, consider using a rust inhibitor or lubricant to protect against corrosion.

The Importance Of Proper Lubrication To Prevent Breakage

Inadequate or incorrect lubrication can cause friction between the chain links, leading to premature wear and chain breakage. Ensure that you use an appropriate lubricant for the weather conditions you will be biking in. Apply it carefully and wipe off any excess.

Lubrication helps the chain to move smoothly and prevents dust and dirt from getting stuck in the links.

The Risks Of Overly Tight Or Loose Chains And How To Adjust Them

An overly tight chain can cause excessive stress on the links, while a loose chain can cause the chain to slip or come off entirely. To check if your chain is too loose or tight, lift it up, and it should not move more than half an inch either way.

To adjust the chain’s tension, simply use a wrench to loosen the rear axle nut and move the wheel back or forth. Then tighten the axle nut to the correct torque specification.

How To Identify And Address Chain Wear And Stretching

Over time, chains can stretch and wear out, leading to breakage and poor shifting performance. To identify chain wear, check if the chain has stretched by measuring it with a chain checker tool. If it has stretched beyond its limit, it needs to be replaced.

To address the issue, buy a suitable new chain, install and adjust it according to the manufacturer’s specifications.

Avoiding Damage To Chains From Shifting Or Aggressive Riding

Lastly, shifting gears too frequently or aggressively riding can damage chains. To prevent this, make sure you shift gears smoothly and avoid placing excessive force on the chain. Always ensure that you have good chaining technique and don’t needlessly shift gears without giving the chain time to adjust.

It is essential to know the common causes of bike chain breakage to prevent it from happening. Remember to maintain your chain clean and lubricated, adjust tension to the appropriate torque, identify wear and stretching, and ride smoothly. By following these tips, you can help ensure a safe and enjoyable biking experience.

Happy cycling!

Essential Tools And Materials For Fixing A Broken Bike Chain

Fixing a broken bike chain might seem like a daunting task, but with the right tools and materials, it can be a breeze. Here are the essential tools and materials you’ll need to get your bike chain back in working condition.


  • Screwdrivers will come in handy if your bike chain uses a master link. Often, a screwdriver is needed to remove the master link.


  • Pliers are a versatile tool when fixing a bike chain. They can be used to open and remove links from the chain or help with reassembling the chain.

Chain Breaker Tool

  • A chain breaker tool is a crucial piece of equipment when fixing a broken bike chain. It allows you to break the chain at the affected link and remove it.

Replacement Pins And Links

  • If the damaged link cannot be repaired, you need to replace it with a new one. Replacement pins and links are essential to have on hand to ensure you can effectively fix your chain.


  • Adding lubrication to your bike chain after fixing it is crucial to prevent future damage. Lubrication helps keep the chain from rusting and helps the bike’s components work smoothly.

Needle-Nose Pliers

  • If you need to remove a stubborn link or perform precision adjustments, needle-nose pliers are the perfect tool for the job. They come in handy when working on tight spaces and angles.

Shop Towel Or Cloth

  • Having a shop towel or cloth nearby is vital when fixing your broken bike chain. It will help keep your workspace clean and prevent dirt and debris from getting into your bike’s components.

With these tools and materials in hand, you’ll be ready to tackle a broken bike chain. Remember to take your time, work carefully, and stay safe. Happy repairing!

Step-By-Step Guide To Fixing A Broken Bike Chain

Evaluate The Severity Of The Damage And Identify The Breakage Point

Before fixing your broken bike chain, you need to determine the severity of the damage. Once you’ve assessed the damage, you can then identify where the breakage point is. Here’s what to do:

  • Look at both ends of the broken chain to identify where the link separated.
  • If the break is not severe, i.e. It occurred on an outer link or it’s just a simple bent link, you can fix it yourself.
  • If the chain is severely damaged, i.e. The break occurred on an inner plate, you’ll need to replace the entire chain.

Remove The Broken Section Of The Chain

To fix the broken chain, you’ll first need to remove the broken section of the chain. Follow these steps:

  • Use a chain tool to push the pin partway out from the chain.
  • Position the chain in the tool and then turn the handle until the chain is pushed to the point where the pin starts to come out.
  • Continue turning the handle until the pin is completely out of the chain and the broken section is free.
  • Remove the broken section of the chain.

Reconnect The Chain Using A Chain Breaker Tool

Now that you have removed the broken section of the chain, the next step is to reconnect it to the bike using a chain breaker tool. Here’s how:

  • Insert the chain into the chain tool.
  • Turn the handle of the tool until the pin is lined up with the links that need to be reconnected.
  • Push the pin back into the chain.
  • You should now have a complete chain with the link reconnected.

Lubricate And Reattach The Chain To The Bike

Once the chain is reconnected, it’s time to lubricate it and reattach it to the bike. Follow these steps:

  • Apply lubricant to the chain.
  • Reattach the chain to the bike by running it through the rear derailleur and cassette.
  • Run the chain over the front chainring and align it with the rear derailleur pulleys.
  • Pull the chain tight, so there’s no slack, and connect the ends of the chain together using the quick release chain link.

Test The Connection Point And Ensure That The Chain Runs Smoothly

Now that everything is in place, test the connection point and ensure that the chain runs smoothly. Here’s what to do:

  • Slowly turn the pedals backward to check that the chain is running smoothly and there are no tight spots.
  • If you notice any issues, adjust the position of the derailleur and try again.
  • Once you’re satisfied with the result, take your bike for a test ride to ensure everything is in order.

Frequently Asked Questions For How To Fix A Broken Bike Chain

What Causes A Bike Chain To Break?

Bike chains can break due to wear and tear, rust, damage, or poor maintenance.

What Tools Do I Need To Fix A Broken Bike Chain?

You’ll need a chain tool, replacement links, and a wrench. A master link can also be handy.

How Do I Fix A Broken Bike Chain?

Use a chain tool to remove the broken link, and replace it with a new one. Reconnect the chain.

How Can I Prevent My Bike Chain From Breaking?

Regularly cleaning and lubricating your chain, checking for wear and tear, and using proper shifting techniques can prevent chain breaks.


Fixing a broken bike chain may seem like a daunting task, but with the right tools and techniques, anyone can do it. Knowing the proper steps to take and having the necessary tools on hand can make all the difference.

Remember to always examine your chain for damage before riding and to keep it well lubricated to prevent future issues. Don’t let a broken chain ruin your biking experience, take the time to learn how to fix it yourself and get back on the road in no time.

With practice and patience, you’ll be amazed at the level of expertise you can achieve as a bike chain repair expert. Keep these tips in mind and get ready to hit the road with confidence in your bike’s reliability.

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