Why Does My Bike Chain Slip When I Pedal Hard?

While riding a bike there’s nothing more frustrating than a slipping chain. whenever you face such an issue with your bike a question arises which is why is it happening, right?

To tell you the truth, it can happen for a number of reasons such as a worn-out chain, or a wrong-sized chain, and could be the chain’s cog needs replacing, it could be either of these reasons.

if you are facing such an issue, make sure you follow our article till the end. as we share with you the detailed reasons for a slippery chain on your bike and can you fix it or you need to replace it. let’s get started

Bike’s Chain Slipping- What Does It Indicate?

It indicates that the chain is not properly meshed with the teeth of the sprocket. This can be caused by several things:

  • The chain is too loose and needs to be tightened.
  • Sprockets are worn and need to be replaced.
  • Something obstructing the path of the chain, such as dirt or a stone.
  • The chain is old and needs to be replaced.

If you find that your chain is slipping, it is important to identify the cause so that you can fix it. Otherwise, it will continue to slip and could eventually break, which could cause serious injury.

Why Does My Chain Slip Under Pressure?

One of the most common questions we get here at BikeExchange is “Why does my chain slip under pressure?”. It’s a valid question and one that can be frustrating to figure out. But never fear, we’re here to help, we’ll walk you through a few potential causes of chain slipping, and how to address them.

Why Does My Bike Chain Slip When I Pedal Hard

Check Your Chainrings

The first thing to check if your chain is slipping is your chainrings. If they’re worn out, it’s likely that they’re not gripping the chain as tightly as they used to. This can cause the chain to slip, especially under pressure. You’ll know your chainrings are worn out if you see any damage to the teeth, such as chips or flat spots. If they look damaged, it’s time for new ones.

Check Your Chain

The next thing to check is your chain. A worn chain can also cause slipping, as it can stretch and become loose over time. You can check your chain for wear by measuring it with a chain checker tool. If it’s stretched beyond the maximum limit, it’s time for a new one.

Adjust Your Derailleurs

If your chainrings and chain are in good condition, the next thing to check is your derailleurs. If they’re not adjusted properly, they can cause the chain to slip. You’ll know they’re not adjusted properly if the chain rubs on the derailleur when you shift gears. To adjust your derailleurs, consult your bike’s owner’s manual.

Replace Your Cassette

If your chainrings, chain, and derailleurs are all in good condition and adjusted properly, the next thing to check is your cassette. A worn cassette can cause the chain to slip, especially when shifting gears. You’ll know your cassette is worn out if you see any damage to the teeth, such as chips or flat spots. If it looks damaged, it’s time for a new one.

Adjust Your Chain Tension

If your chain is slipping and none of the above issues are to blame, it’s possible that your chain is too loose. This can happen if you don’t adjust your chain tension regularly. To check your chain tension, consult your bike’s owner’s manual. If it’s too loose, tighten it until it’s the correct tension.

How Do You Fix A Slippery Chain On A Bike?

If your bike chain is slipping, it’s likely because it’s not properly lubricated. You can fix this by cleaning the chain and applying a new layer of lubricant. Follow these steps to get your bike chain running smoothly again:

How Do You Fix A Slippery Chain On A Bike


Clean the chain with a degreaser or brush. This will remove any old lubricant and grime that’s built up on the chain.


Apply a new layer of lubricant to the chain. You can use a brush or your fingers to work the lubricant into the links.


Wipe off any excess lubricant with a rag. You don’t want there to be too much lubricant on the chain, as this can attract dirt and grime.


pedal the bike to work the lubricant into the chain. This will help ensure that the chain is properly lubricated.


Can You Ride A Bike With A Slippery Chain?

No, you can’t ride a bike with a slippery chain. The chain needs to be tight in order to grip the gears, and if it’s slippery, it won’t be able to do that. You could try using some WD-40 or another lubricant on the chain to see if that helps, but if the problem persists, you’ll need to take it to a bike shop and have them take a look at it.

Can A Slipping Chain Cause Accidents?

The most common cause of accidents involving chains is a slipping chain. If the chain is not properly secured, it can easily slip off the sprocket, resulting in the rider losing control. In addition, a loose chain can also snag on objects along the road, causing the rider to be pulled off the bike. While most chain-related accidents are not serious, they can still result in injuries. Therefore, it is important to always make sure that your chain is properly secured before riding.

Why Does My Bike Chain Keep Popping?

Bike chains are one of the most important components on your bicycle, and if they’re not functioning properly, it can make for a very frustrating ride. If your bike chain keeps popping off, it’s likely due to one of three issues: the chain is too loose, the chain is damaged, or the chainring teeth are worn down.

Final Thoughts

We understand chain slippage is a common issue with cyclists, and it can be frustrating when your bike chain won’t stay on track. After reading this article, we are hoping this won’t be a problem for you anymore.

As we’ve discussed why chains slip, how to fix the problem, and some of the dangers of riding with a slippery chain in the above segments. Hopefully, this information will help you keep your bike in good working order so you can enjoy those summer rides without having to worry about a pesky chain slipping.

Miguel Watts

Miguel is an automobile engineer, who works in his automobile workshop. He is in this track for almost fifteen years, so he has vast experience with automobile tools and accessories. Besides this profession, he’s a hobbyist blogger who loves to research different tools and accessories of cars, motorbikes, automobiles, etc., and shares his findings with others. The Toolsinsider is a result of that. Miguel creates this site to share his findings with a broader audience.

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