Cyclists know what an expensive and complicated hobby we enjoy. Taking care of our expensive bikes and bike parts doesn’t have to be complicated. Knowing the best type of bike chain lube for road bikes is as simple as lubricating for the weather conditions you ride in.
For an in-depth review of the different types of chain lubricant read this Ultimate Guide to Bike Chain Lube.
Bike Chain Lubricants: Wet vs Dry
If you ride in humid and wet conditions then no doubt you need a wet chain lube for your bike. If you ride in dry climate then a dry lubricant will work great. One type of lubricant is not better than the other because they each serve their own purpose. The best type of bike chain lube
I use both dry and wet lubricants, as well as ceramic wax. It all depends on the weather conditions and terrain where I am riding. While I use different types of chain lubricants, I never mix them. I always clean and degrease my chain before applying wet lubricant, and I do the same when switching from wet to dry or dry to wet. In fact, the only time I don’t clean and degrease my chain before applying lubricant is when I have dry on the chain and I am simply applying more dry lube.
Best Road Bike Chain Lubricant
Road bikes and mountain bikes have many things in common when it comes to lubrication. A mountain bike in wet conditions should use a wet chain lubricant, and an MTB in dry conditions should use a dry lubricant. The best road bike chain lubricant for my climate is a dry lube. I live on the front range in Colorado where we get minimal precipitation in the summer. When we travel I take multiple chain lube types. (Read: Biking Vacations: Why Use A Biking Travel Agent)
You can use a wet chain lubricant in dry conditions, but you will have to reapply it more often than you would a dry lubricant. Using a dry lubricant in wet conditions is the ultimate cycling fopaux. Wet conditions will wash your lubricant off leaving you a noise chain and causing damage to your bikes drivetrain.
The best type of bike chain lube for road bikes will most likely come from a reputable brand. Companies like Finish Line, Muc Off and others have spent a lot of money on R&D to help their respective race sponsored riders have a better experience.
Best Type of Chain Lube For Road Bike Trainers
Believe it or not, indoor bike trainers require chain lubrication too. The elements aren’t as harsh indoors so you don’t have to apply lube as often, but it should still be applied regularly. Chain lubricant for your indoor smart trainer, and basic trainers too, will help reduce noise and ensure smooth shifting.
I exclusively use dry chain lubricant on my indoor smart trainer. If I lived in a very humid climate, or had my trainer setup next to a humidified, I’d consider wet lube. The scenarios where wet lube made sense on an indoor trainer are rare. If you’re in doubt, make the safe bet by sticking with dry lubricant.
Here are links to the types of chain lubrication I use: