Why does a motorcycle chain get loose?

Do you constantly need to take the slack out of your motorcycle chain? Is there something wrong with your drive train set up?

Motorcycle chains lose tension because of the tension bolts not being tight. Chains have a limited life of around 20,000 miles and become slack as more miles are logged.

How do you fix a loose motorcycle chain?

It’s a simple process, go to the swing arms and loosen the tension bolts and wind on more tension until you have the correct chain tension for your motorcycle. If it’s too tight, you could lock the back wheel.

Chains need to be adjusted periodically, but you should know that chains have a finite life and need replacing. They are serviceable items together with your sprockets.

Poorly maintained chains are susceptible to slackening and excessive wear and tear. You must set up a frequent chain cleaning and lube regime to maintain your chain.

You can clean your chain with detergent and dry off with a blower, oil the chain and keep it free from rust to prevent premature failure.

If you find yourself adjusting the tension every week, your chain is stretched and needs to be replaced.

It is vital to change the chain with a sprocket set, front and rear to extend the life of the chain and prevent constant chain tensioning.

How loose is too loose for a motorcycle chain?

A correctly tensioned chain will run smooth, but a loose chain will make a noise as the chain hits other components. It’s hard not to mistake the noise of a slack chain.

If you have a lot of slack, you may be losing some power as the chain skips sprockets teeth.

Check your owner’s manual for chain tension information. You will see some values for acceptable slack and the best place to check for slack on your chain.

If you have a loose chain and don’t take action to fix the problem, you could be heading for a major repair bill if you ride in this fashion.

Is a loose bike chain bad?

A loose chain can be catastrophic in some circumstances, so ignoring the telltale signs is perilous.

A loose chain can snap and come off into oncoming traffic as it hurtles through the air, causing a potential accident.

The sudden loss of power to the motorcycle may cause you to be in a hazardous position on a freeway.

If the chain wraps around the rear wheel hub and locks the rear wheel, then the consequences could be devastating as the motorbike loses control at high speed.

If the chain breaks and hits your leg, you could suffer lacerations if you do not have the correct protective gear.

Your motorcycle chain is an integral part of your drive chain and needs to be maintained regularly.