Why Does My Bike Chain Slip When I Pedal Hard?

Mountain bikers can experience a number of problems while out riding such as getting a flat tire. There is also a problem that bikers might experience is that there is chain slipping or skipping. The noise the chain makes when skipping can be a concern. So, why does my bike chain slip when I pedal hard?

Your bike chain can be slipping or skipping for a number of reasons but the common reason for this is that the shift cable is stretched. There are a number of other reasons such as the chain being too long, or your derailleur may be damaged and needs to be replaced.

In this post, we will go through why does my bike chain slip when I pedal hard. Let’s get started!

Read more on common questions asked

What Is Chain Slip?

Chain slipping is also referred to as chain skipping is when you change the gears on your bike, the chain skips between the gears so instead of shifting up one gear it shifts twice when you are out riding. And you may hear a clicking type noise.

Why Does My Bike Chain Slip When I Pedal Hard?

When you start to experience your bike chain slipping, the most common reason for this is that the cable is stretched. This can occur over time that the shift cable stretches it is just simple wear and tear. There are a number of reasons why your bike chain could be slipping, these are as follows.

  • Over time the shift cables become stretched, in short the cable becomes loose. There needs to be tension in the cable to open a derailleur, which shifts your chain between gears.
  • There would be an issue with the chain been too long, if so it will have a tendency to fall off when riding.
  • Could just be wear and tear and parts need to be replaced.
  • There is misalignment, as there could be an incorrect installation on the derailleur, or cables need readjustment.
  • There could be damage to the sprocket, derailleur, chain, or cable.
rear derailleur mountain bike

How Do You Fix A Slipping Bike Chain?

Once you know the reasons why the chain is slipping. The most common reason for the chain slipping is that the cable is stretched, then the solution is to tighten the shift cable.

If the problem is that the chain is too long they will need to shorten the bike chain. If there is any damage to the sprocket, derailleur, chain, or cable you will need to replace it. And if the problem is misalignment you will need to readjust.

Why Is My Bike Chain Clicking?

The clicking sound is most likely caused by the chain rubbing against the cage derailleur. There are two possible reasons why your bike chain is clicking. The first being that your chain and derailleur may need lubrication.

The second reason is that you are changing gears, making your chain jump up or down a gear on the rear cassette. The could be just the derailleur that needs adjustment.

How Do I Know If My Bike Chain Is Too Loose?

You will know that your bike chain is too long when it is constantly slipping off and when shifting gears the derailleur can not handle the extra chain length. In this case, you will need to shorten the bike chain.

While on the other hand if the chain is too short it can bind and do a lot of damage if you shift into a chainring and cog.

Chain Guard

Is WD40 Bad For Bike Chains?

WD-40 works wells as a light lubricant on small items like door hinges or to fix a squeaking hinge. You should not use WD-40 as a chain lubricant as bike chains are far too heavy and fast-moving for WD-40 as it is not a true lubricant.

WD-40 does have products that are specially made for bike chains. These are the bike chain lube all-conditions lubricant that protects bicycle chains in dry, wet, or varying conditions.

Wrapping Up

Finally, the bike chain can be slipping off for a number of reasons but the common reason for this is that the shift cable is stretched. There are a number of other reasons such as the chain being too long, or your derailleur may be damaged and need to be replaced.

And that’s it for now! I’d love it if this post on why does my bike chain slip when I pedal hard was helpful to you. Let me know if you have any questions and let me know if there is more to add.

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why does my bike chain slip