Bicycle Lubrication and Cleaning Tips
Using Muscle Chain Lube CL-10™ &
Power-Lift Grease PL-10™
In addition to proper lubrication, keeping your bike clean is crucial to the life of its components, not to mention the quality of your ride. Chain Lube CL-10™ not only lubricates and protects, but is an excellent cleaner. It eliminates the need for additional cleaning products to keep your bike in top riding condition.
Here are some recommendations for cleaning your bike’s components.
Apply Chain Lube CL-10™ to a rag and simply wipe off the components.
Use a bike cleaning brush (or an old toothbrush) - apply Chain Lube CL-10™ and scrub away. Wipe dry with a clean rag.
Remove component(s) from the bike and soak for a while in Chain Lube CL-10™ . Depending on how dirty the part is, soak it for about 30 minutes (or until it’s cleaned to your satisfaction). Then wipe it off with a clean rag.
Remember to be careful when cleaning around brake pads and wheel rims - lubricating braking surfaces can be harmful to your health! We recommend sticking with a degreaser, rubbing alcohol, or just plain old soap and water when cleaning these areas.
Should I use oil or grease?
Chain Lube CL-10™ (a light petroleum-based high-performance oil) is great for some of the most challenging cycling conditions - dusty, dry or sandy conditions, plus snow and slush…an excellent choice for those sub-zero temperatures.
If you prefer a more solid lube, use Power-Lift Grease PL-10™ (lithium-complex grease). We’ve made various recommendations to follow based on which we think is best for the application. But whether you choose Chain Lube CL-10™ or Power-Lift Grease PL-10™, just remember the most important thing is to clean your bike and apply the lube regularly.
The Drive Train
The most important part of maintaining your bike is properly cleaning, lubricating and protecting the drive train. Be sure to clean before lubricating. A clean and lubed chain retards the stretch caused by wear, which in turn is caused by dirt, rust and other grit. When you lube a dirty chain, you make the matter even worse. For a smoother, quieter and faster ride with fewer mechanical breakdowns, easier pedaling and smoother shifting, lube the drive train with Chain Lube CL-10™ . Run your pedals backwards while applying CL-10™ to the chain as it passes over the smallest rear gear to ensure quick and thorough penetration. You may want to put the lube on a bike brush and brush it on for complete coverage of the chain - especially if you’ll be riding in really wet conditions for an extended period of time or before storage of the bike at the end of the season. Wipe off excess lube. Also apply CL-10™ to both front and rear derailleurs. Dirty or grimy pivots, bearings and springs will reduce shifting performance. So clean the derailleurs first, and then lube all pivot points and rear pulleys with CL-10™ . Wipe off excess lube, and CL-10™ will not leave an oily coating that attracts dirt and other contaminants while riding.
A well-adjusted and lubed headset will provide smooth, precise steering. A lot of debris can accumulate in the lower bearing, too, so unless you’re a professional bike mechanic, grab your Power-Lift Grease PL-10™ and your bike and head to your local shop to have the headset serviced at least once a year.
The bottom bracket should be properly adjusted and greased because it transfers all of your pedal power to the drive train. If you’re hearing gritty noises or spinning performance isn’t smooth, it’s time to clean and re-lube the bottom bracket. Use Chain Lube CL-10™ to clean and Power-Lift Grease PL-10™ to lube, and when you’re done, make sure the axle spins freely but without any side-to-side play. For maximum benefit, you can lightly coat the clean bearings with Chain Lube CL-10™ before repacking with Power-Lift Grease PL-10™.
Front & Rear Hubs
Wheel bearings should be cleaned and repacked at least once a year. Use Power-Lift Grease PL-10™ to lube and prevent bearing distortion and maximize performance with a smooth, quiet rotating action. Coat the clean bearings with Chain Lube CL-10™ , and then repack with PL-10™ for the ultimate lubrication experience.
“Other Stuff” to Lube, Clean & Protect
The handlebar stem and pinch bolt are susceptible to corrosion, and moisture accelerates the problem. A couple times a year, remove the bolts, slide the handlebar to the side, clean all surfaces and apply a thin layer of Chain Lube CL-10™ or Power-Lift Grease PL-10™ to all mating surfaces. This will also permit easy adjustments in the future.
Apply a couple drops of Chain Lube CL-10™ to brake lever pivots (and brake arm fixing bolts) to help prevent stiffness. Be careful - don’t get any lube on braking surfaces! Lube SPD pedals regularly. Strip down, clean and apply Chain Lube CL-10™ or Power-Lift Grease PL-10™. Also lube platform and resin pedals regularly, especially after a long, wet ride.
Apply Chain Lube CL-10™ or Power-Lift Grease PL-10™ to bolts before assembling to protect from corrosion and seizing.
Apply a thin coating of Chain Lube CL-10™ or Power-Lift Grease PL-10™ to cables when they are being replaced.
Where quick release levers rotate in the release body, apply several drops of Chain Lube CL-10™ once a year.
Don’t forget the seat post. It’s prone to corrosion and seizing. Clean first, and then apply a thin layer of Power-Lift Grease PL-10™ to the section that’s inserted into the frame. Don’t use too much - your seat may move too easily.
Use Chain Lube CL-10™ on the bicycle frame to protect it from dirt, mud, moisture, rust and corrosion. Apply CL-10™ to a clean rag and completely wipe the frame down. Also adds a nice shine and keeps your bike looking new.
Copyright 2002-2019 Muscle Products Corp. Rev. 8/2019