Ask any professional biker — they will say that the most crucial part of a bike is the chain. And that statement will be 100 percent correct. Without the chain, the bicycle is pretty much useless. The drivetrain will not run, nor will the bike go forward. For that reason, it is one of the parts that require more maintenance.
The thing is, your bike’s chain can get break even with proper maintenance. And in that case, you will have no option to get it fixed or replaced. But how much does it cost to fix a bike chain, right? Well, the answer is not that simple. However, if you stick to the end, you can have a fair idea regarding the pricing.
How Much Will It Cost to Fix a Bike Chain?
Professional bikers have a good overall idea regarding bike parts. And whenever the chain needs fixing, they will spend $0 on it. Wondering how? Well, in most cases, one of the links of the chain will break down. Those bikers will take a donor link from an old chain when that happens.
Now, if you are riding a bike for a reasonable amount of time, you might already have old chains lying around. And in such cases, you will be looking to pay nothing if you have little DIY skills with bike parts.
But if you lack the skills, you can just pay your local bike repair shop a visit. Even in that case, if the repairman takes a chain link from an old chain, they might not charge you anything. And in some cases, you might need to pay for their time, which will depend on the labor cost of the repair shop.
Can You Fix a Worn Out Chain?
Yes, link snapping is the most common issue with bike chains. However, over time, the chain can wear down. Basically, the more miles you will put on the bike, the more the chain will wear out. Why? Well, the more you ride the bike, the more your chain weakens and stretches.
You will also be wearing and flexing the side plats of the chain as you ride the bike. The thing is, your drivetrain is of metal, just like the chain. With time, both the drivetrain and the chain will wear down due to friction. And you can slow the process, not stop it. To slow down the wearing, you will need to use lubricants.
Nonetheless, when the bike’s chain wears down, you can not fix it. Why? Well, you can not simply reverse the damages that the friction and flexing have caused. But the good news is that entry-level chains come at around $15! And if you want to get the high-performance chains, you will be looking to spend from $25 to $60.
On that note, you should not ride your bike with an utterly worn-down chain. The chain will damage the other parts of your bicycle, including the drivetrain. And to get the drivetrain replaced, you would need to spend more in comparison to replacing a chain.
How Can You Tell That Your Chain Is Worn?
So, how do you know that your chain is worn down? The first tell-tale sign is reduced performance. You will notice that the drivetrain is making weird noises when you are shifting the chain, for example. For the worst-case scenario, you will notice that the chain is skipping when it is under load.
Talking of which, you can get severely injured for a skipping chain. For that reason, it is pretty vital to get your chain replaced when it is worn down. Also, you might end up damaging your chain cassette. Again, you would need to pay more than the chain replacement for replacing the cassette.
So, how much does it cost to fix a bike chain? Well, if you are working with a snapped link, it might not cost you a dime if you can replace the link with an old chain. But for worn-down chains, you will need to get them replaced. And for that, you will be looking for anywhere between $15 to $60 or more.