Can I Use Garage Door Lubricant On My Bike Chain?

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People own bikes for commuting, some use bikes as a means of transportation, and some use bikes for recreation. Whatever purpose your bike serves, lubricating your bike chain may not be fun, but it is required of you to maintain your bike for smooth running.

Yes; however, it is not favorable for a long time. The lubricant tends to wash away quickly and leaves the chain exposed. Garage door lubricants are used to reduce friction and ensure the smooth operation of garage door systems. 

They can be used on all metallic components for sticking, such as pulleys, hinges, tracks, sliding gate rollers, and chains. They also prevent the metal components from corroding and squeaking.

There are two types of garage door lubricants: silicon and lithium bases. Silicone lubricants (otherwise known as silicone spray) are versatile and considered to be the best lubricants that can be used on any material, such as wood, plastic, painted materials, and metals. They are easy to apply, can hold up at extreme temperatures, and are moisture-resistant. Lithium lubricants (or lithium greases) are also widely known as they have the ability can between the moving parts of an object.

Why Should I Lubricate My Bike Chain?

Using a lubricant on your bike chain is an excellent idea. It reduces friction and prevents premature wear and tear. It also helps to transmit power, make your bike cool, allow for vibration damping, reduce stealing effects, and protect against corrosion. Wear and tear in your bike is caused by metal-to-metal contact; lubricating will not only help to prevent this but also allow you to have a rust-free bike chain. Lubricating your bike chain allows a smooth engagement of the chain with the cassette sprockets and chainrings.

It also allows for proper shifting performance. When your bike chain is lubricated, it helps the chain overcome mechanical resistance and keeps your drivetrain in good condition by protecting and enhancing its function.

However, if your bike chain is not properly lubricated, the lubricant compounds work against the purpose they are meant to serve. Without lubricating your bike chain, a dry chain will let out a loud squeal and won’t move smoothly, causing a snap mid-ride.

How Can I Tell If My Bike Chains Need Lubrication?

Detecting when your bike chains need to be lubed is a very easy process. Take your time to identify or listen to your bike for a squeal or squeak sound, and when the bike doesn’t shift smoothly anymore, replace it.

When the sound is ear-piercing, all you need to do is clean and lubricate. You can spot-clean your bike chain by brushing out the dirt with a firm brush. Then, lube the chain to reduce mechanical resistance caused by the friction between the bike tires and the road and prevent wear and tear caused by dirt, rust, and grime.

Can I Use Silicone Lubricant on My Bike Chain?

Yes, you can. Silicone lubricants have an aerosol nature and are thought to be the best lubricant for any material, including chains. However, silicone spray only works if your bike isn’t frequently used. It washes away easily, especially in wet conditions, leaving your bike chains unlubricated and unprotected.

However, if your bike is not subjected to heavy-duty, silicone lubricants are ideal for your bike chain. Silicone is known to maintain its greasiness even at extreme temperatures, has low friction, doesn’t react to most substances, and is rust-free, making it a perfect choice.

Can I Use Lithium Grease On My Bike Chain?

Yes; however, it is not considered to be an ideal lubricant for your bike chain. Lithium grease is ideal for lubricating your seat post, the threads on the pedals, and packing into bearings but is considered unsuitable for your bike chain. Lithium grease works perfectly but is not considered an ideal lube.

How Do I Lube My Bike Chain with Garage Door Lubricant?

Lubing your bike chain helps to improve its performance by reducing friction and preventing premature wear and tear. A bike chain must be properly cleaned before applying the lubricant. With the steps below, you can lube your bike chain in a few minutes.

Step 1: Select your lube

You can choose any of the garage door lubricants, but it is recommended that you use a silicone lubricant.

Step 2: Clean the Bike Chain

Cleaning your bike chain is quite easy. There are 5 things to do to properly clean your bike chain and get rid of dirt, dust, and grease.

  • Clean with a dry rag or spray degreaser or isopropyl alcohol onto the rag. A quick spray will do. 
  • Hold the rag against your bike chain and wipe it down.
  • Next, grab onto one of the pearls and crank the pedal backward (backpedal). Then, your bike chain runs through the rag. Continue until your bike chain is well-cleaned. While doing this, ensure to prevent your fingers from getting caught in between your bike chain and the chainrings. 
  • If you do not want to clean by hand, get a chain scrubber. It is a space for a degreaser and a brush that rotates. The device is clasped around your bike chain. It is best to follow the device’s label instructions. Slide two pieces around your bike chain, add a degreaser to the reservoir, and backpedal your chain for about 15 spins.

Step 3: Lube Application 

Before applying the lube to your bike chain, thoroughly shake the lubricant container. The ingredients may be separated in the container. Shake the container to mix them. Then, hold the bottle to rest on the inside of your bike chain, then squeeze the lube or spray out of the bottle to apply while you backpedal.

While applying, make sure to keep a firm grip on the bottle. Afterward, put the bottle aside and run your chain around the chainrings about 12 times to work the lube into the chain. Slowly run through the gears and chainrings for an even distribution of the lube.

Once you’ve properly distributed the lube, wipe off the excess lube by holding a rag against the chain and pulling the pedal back to run your bike chain and rings through the rag. If you do not get rid of excess lube, it will attract dust, dirt, and grime, causing them to build up on the chain.

How Frequently Should I Lubricate My Bicycle Chain?

It is recommended that you lube your bike chain once every month or after about 15 to 25 rides. This would help to sustain your bike’s performance, reduce friction, prevent wear, and also protect it from rust.

How often you should lubricate your bike is determined by several factors. The below factors will help you know the moment at which your bike chains need to be lubed.

  • When your bike is exposed to dirt, mud, and grime. This mostly happens when a bike is used for outdoor rides. Whenever there is visible debris and dirt build-up, it is important to clean and lube your bike chain. This is the only way to guarantee an efficient next ride.
  • After a long or tough ride, it is best to have your bike chain cleaned and lubed. This allows for optimal performance and smooth cycling.
  • Unlike other bikes that require lubrication when they cover about 200 to 500 miles, a regular bike should be cleaned and lubed after every 100 miles of riding, which is the recommended coverage to clean your bike chain.

Do I Need to Clean My Bike Every Day?

Cleaning your bike regularly will help it last longer. For road bikes, it is best to degrease and regrease every 100 miles. If it is a mountain bike, it is recommended that it be cleaned after each regular use during the dry season or after mud buildup.

Whichever category your bike falls into, it is recommended that you take your time to clean, wash, and lube your bike, especially your drivetrain, at regular intervals or after every few rides.

Can I Overlubricate My Bike Chain?

Yes, it is possible. When you apply too much lubricant, there is a possibility that you over-lubricate your bike chain.

Unlike a dry chain, too much lube will only attract dust, dirt, and grime, thereby creating a large buildup on your drivetrain and causing it to wear out quickly.

Care Instructions for Proper Bike Maintenance

Regardless of what you use your bike for, it maintains its efficiency and gives a high-quality performance when properly taken care of. Here are 10 tips to follow to increase the performance and longevity of your bike:

  • Always keep your bike and drivetrain clean and lubricated.
  • Your bike tires should be inflated properly to avoid punctures that can lead to accidents. It is best to maintain the air pressure in your tires.
  • Always lubricate the chain links properly and regularly. Do not over-lubricate your bike chains.
  • Ensure the brake pads are well-adjusted. Always check the brakes, and be sure that the brakes hold the tires properly. Also, always check the brake fluid, and it is suggested to top it up once in a few months. 
  • It is best to have a well-adjusted clutch. Regardless of how efficient your bike is, if the clutch is not well adjusted, it consumes more fuel.
  • You must take your bike in for service regularly to reduce the occurrence of mechanical faults. It is best to go for professional servicing.


Lubricating your bike chain with garage door lubricant is an easy and quick method without you having to start looking for a bike chain lube. However, when lubrication isn’t working, then you can seek repair. However, it is best to continually lubricate your bike chain regularly and after every few rides.

Lubricating your bike chain helps to prevent mechanical resistance, especially in your drivetrain, reduces friction, and also prevents wear and rust. Owning a bike means taking care of it. A well-maintained and properly lubricated bike will always work efficiently.

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Written by Timothy Amin

Timothy is a seasoned expert when it comes to garage doors. With over 15 years of experience in the industry, John has installed, repaired, and maintained countless garage doors of various types and styles.