How to Tighten Bike Chain in 2 Different Ways!

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One of the most asked questions coming from the cyclers is “why does my bike chain keep falling off ?”. The reason is simple. The chain tightness is not well adjusted. If you ride your bike regularly, you may occasionally have a slack or detached chain. It does not necessarily signify that the bike needs repair. With the right tools, you can simply learn how to tighten bike chain. Although a bike chain can fall completely off, it is more often than not only loose. If it isn’t too loose, you can pedal until you reach your destination and then tighten it. This article will take you to step by step through the process of how to tighten bike chain.

How to Tighten a Bike Chain of a Single Gear Bike?

The process of how to tighten a chain on a bike is now too tough. If you are new to riding bicycles, you may be unfamiliar with the term “single gear bike.” On this type of bike, which has only one gear, a cog replaces the freewheel mechanism on the back wheel. While pedaling, the circle of the wheel first, followed by the gear. It’s what’s known as a fixie.

How to Tighten Bike Chain

Fixie bikes are perfect for folks who want to get some fitness while cycling. Every square inch of terrain must be traversed with your legs. It’s a great way to get some exercise or prepare for a bike race. If you want to know more about how to fix a loose bike chain keep reading.

Required Tools:

  • Rag
  • Gloves
  • Bike Lubricant
  • Bike Stand
  • Wrench

Step 01:

If you have a lot of experience tightening bike chains, you can do it with the bike upright, but I strongly advise that you flip it over so you can easily access the parts and use the best bike chain degreaser you can find.

Orient your bike such that the wheels are in the air and the saddle is resting on the stand. To avoid scratching the seat, place a soft surface (such as a piece of cardboard or a layer of newspapers) if you don’t have a bike stand.

Step 02:

To adjust the chain, the bolts that hold the tire to the bike must be removed. To accomplish so, use a socket wrench to slowly turn the nuts counterclockwise until they are freed.

Step 03:

At this stage, you will tighten the chain’s tension. Pull back gently on the rear tire until the chain tension is as desired. Keep the tire cantered in the wishbone to make tightening it up easier.

Step 04:

As previously said, the chain should be able to go half an inch in either direction, however, I’d want to elaborate. As you work, you may see that the chain tension changes as you bring the tire back. If it moves too far in either direction, it is not tight enough and must be forced a little more onto the tire. This step is crucial because if it is too tight, you will not be able to turn the pedals.

Step 05:

If you’re happy with the chain tension, lift the rear tire back into place and reattach the axle bolts. Replace each one at a time, using the socket wrench to ensure that they are all tight enough.

Step 06:

When you move the chain a little in each direction to test it, it should easily travel half an inch in both directions. If the tire makes contact with the chain or the frame while spinning, it was mounted improperly and must be replaced. If not, you should pause and try again. Now that your chain is properly attached, your fixie is ready for the road.

How to Tighten a Bike Chain with A Derailleur?

For a bicycle to run smoothly, adjusting bike chain tension is a must. When a fixie’s dangling chain snaps, it doesn’t pose much of a risk. A loose chain on a multi-gear bike is extremely dangerous since your foot might become trapped in it and suffer catastrophic injury. As soon as you notice the chain is slack, get off your multi-gear bike and get to the nearest repair shop. If you have the proper tools and know how to continue, you may repair it there. You must accomplish the following if you want to know how to tighten a bicycle chain:

Step 01:

Flip the bike over onto a bike stand to gain access to the tire and derailleur. If you don’t have a bike stand, you might select a soft surface that won’t damage the seat or handlebars.

Step 02:

In multi-gear bicycles, there is a screw at the back of the derailleur. On bicycles, the letter B and the screw are usually situated close to each other. To raise the tension on the bicycle chain, tighten this screw clockwise.

Step 03:

Lift the brake lever and then raise it to gain access to the back tire. To accomplish this, disconnect the brakes from the cord.

Step 04:

You may tighten the chain with a derailleur by moving the wheel axle toward the rear dropouts. Make sure not to overtighten the chain by making too many modifications at once.

Step 05:

Once you’re satisfied that the chain tension is enough, reassemble the bike as before, paying special attention to the fit and tightness of the derailleur screw. Check sure the tire is rotating properly and is not in contact with the bike’s frame or chain. If the tension isn’t to your satisfaction, repeat the technique.

Even while it may appear tedious at first, you will quickly become an expert. Wearing gloves will protect your fingers, and having a towel on hand will assist you in removing any lubricant as you work.


The smoothness of a bicycle depends a lot on the well adjustability on bike chain. So you should know how to prevent chain drop. You should not be concerned if your bike chain becomes slack or even falls off; this is very normal. You may replace it and modify the tension by following the directions in this thread.

Keep in mind that tightening a bike chain on a single-gear bike is not the same as tightening a chain on a multi-gear cycle. The process differs based on the sort of bike being built. If you are unclear what to do, review the owner’s handbook or contact the manufacturer, who will email you instructions for your specific model of bike. You might also get the chain adjusted at a reputable bike shop that is familiar with your model of bike. You started reading this with the question how to change the chain on a bike? Hopefully now you know how to tighten bike chain without gears and how to fix a bike chain with gears.

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