slight rust on the side of the links of my bike chain. I'm runing with dry lube which is teflon based I think. The rust isn't deep. Can I go at it with a brass bristle brush, or will that damage it and the orings?



3 Answers 3


I would use something like WD40, and a soft cloth to rub the rust away. Then apply the right amount of chain lubricant and you will be good to go. You can use a brass bristle brush, provided you do it gently like this guy in the video. A toothbrush will also work. This is light surface rust and IMHO nothing to worry about too much.


You can buy a special tool to clean the chain, it is normally circular/spiral shaped and you twist the brush as it runs along the length of the chain.

enter image description here


Also, you can purchase a special chain lube tool, that basically hugs the chain and has a hole to insert a straw.

  • That 3-sided "Grunge Brush" at the bottom of the page you linked to is also very good. Nice thick bristles. Same idea tho - brush all sides of the chain.
    – JPhi1618
    May 20, 2016 at 15:41
  • Wow Mitchell. I've never seen that tool you mentioned. Nice. Thanks. May 20, 2016 at 19:04
  • got one of those, but doubt it will remove rust? probably just good for removing grunge
    – Max
    May 23, 2016 at 8:03

I use a brass brush and kerosene on my chains (both bicycle and motorcycle). it works great and i have never had a problem. i have read that WD40 is inadvisable on o-ring chains, as it can displace the lubrication behind the o-rings. not sure how accurate that is. My neighbor cleans his chain with WD40, and it hasn't flown off the bike while running yet...

  • Modern orings are made of neoprene and are resistant to the solvents in wd40. Older ones were made of silicone and would indeed dissolve.
    – JoErNanO
    May 24, 2016 at 21:55
  • interesting. I would have thought that kerosene would be more aggresive to the orings than wd40. I think brass brush and wd40 will do it for me
    – Max
    May 25, 2016 at 6:45

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.