Bicycle chain quality is usually tied with the price, with more expensive chains increasing your shift quality. A better bike chain is typically made of higher quality materials, and they don’t wear down as quickly, so you can ride on them much longer and tackle more demanding terrain.
Basic chains don’t have the same longevity, but they still work alright. How much is a bicycle chain?
A standard beginner’s bicycle chain starts at $7, and they go up in price to around $70 for a higher performance chain that is lighter and more durable. Bike shops charge between $60 and $100 to replace chain, however you can replace the chain yourself for around $20, if you have a chain tool and lubricant.
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How Much Is A New Chain For A Bike
Simple chains cost less than $20 in most areas. Meanwhile, new high-performance chains start at $25 and go up in price. Some of the cost increase comes with larger chains or unusual sizes.
However, it’s mainly about the quality of the build and materials that add value since low weight or more durable metals and alloys are expensive.
Plus, any new chain variations have to be rigorously tested. Bike parts are not created haphazardly. Engineers and specialists are vital to the design process.
Bicycle Chain Sizes
Not all chains are created equal. A standard size chain has a stock length of 116 links or 58 inches.
The size is determined by the links rather than the chain itself since the 116/58″ chains will fit most bicycles.
If you have custom gear ratios, then it’s a different story, but ninety percent of bikes can fit this length or remove a couple of links quickly to get the correct size.
The chart below shows chain link size, speeds, and brands that make that size, along with low and mid-range (non-custom) prices.
Bicycle Chain Chart
|Link Size||Speed||Manufacturers||Price- Low / Midrange|
|5/16″||6 Speed||N/A Common for any brand||$7 / $58|
|9/32″||7 Speed||HG/IG, Shimano, SRAM||$7 / $31|
|9/32″||8 Speed||HG/IG, Shimano, SRAM||$7 / $31|
|9/32″- 1/4″||9 Speed||N/A Common for any brand||$7 / $31 – $10 / $60|
|1/4″||10 Speed||Campagnolo, Shimano||$10 / $60|
|7/32″||10 Narrow||Campagnolo, KMC||$8 / $31-$70|
|7/32″||10 Direction||Shimano||$8 / $31-$70|
|7/32″||11 Speed||Campagnolo, Shimano||$8 / $31-$70|
How Much Does It Cost To Replace Bicycle Chain At Bike Shop
Most bike shops charge $10 to $20 for a bike chain change. It is a relatively quick procedure that won’t take too much of the mechanics’ time.
Be aware of shop fees, which can significantly increase your cost in some places. These are common and vary widely based on the establishment and location.
Additionally, you will have to pay for the new chain and taxes, so once you add those costs together, it can be $60 to $100.
How Much Does It Cost To Replace Bicycle Chain Myself
You won’t pay a shop fee or mechanics time if you learn to DIY your bike chain. It should cost no more than $15 to $50 for a chain tool to replace your bicycle chain yourself.
How much you value your own learning time isn’t part of the cost I can calculate, but it won’t cost you cash out of pocket, so we’re leaving that out of the equation.
Still, once you have the tool and the skill, all you need is a chain to work with. Plus chain lubricant, and if you want to stay clean, you may need some gloves.
How Much Is A Bike Chain At Walmart
Walmart isn’t known for selling high-end goods. You can expect to find a variety of essential entry-level bike chains in-store.
Most Walmart bicycle chains cost $7 to $20, and they can be found on the aisle with the bicycles, which is usually near the children’s toy section.
You can also order online from Walmart. I recommend the KMC Chain X8.93-116L Bike Chain. It has a four-star rating from customers who have purchased and used it in real-world conditions.
Learn more about Walmart bike chains and this KMC by clicking here.
How Much Does A Mountain Bike Chain Cost
A famous brand for quality beginner’s mountain bike chains is SRAM. You should expect to pay $17 to $35 for this brand.
Fortunately, SRAM is known for producing well-made parts with good longevity and durability, so you shouldn’t need a new chain for a couple of thousand miles.
How Much Is A Bike Chain In South Africa
A bicycle chain in the Republic of South Africa costs thirty to three hundred and fifty Rand. In USD, that’s anywhere from $2.05 to $24.
While that’s a great exchange rate, if you planned to ship from there to here, it would run you an additional $63 for a package that could hold, at most, two bike chains.
How Much Is A Bike Chain In Nigeria
A bike chain in Nigeria starts at around 4,500 NGN. In USD, that is $10.09 at the current exchange rate.
Like other places in the world, the price only goes up from there based on the material quality.
Additionally, if you wanted to ship a US bike chain to Nigeria, it would cost around $50 to $70 just for the shipping fees.
Helpful Tips To Know About How Much A Bicycle Chain Costs
Whether you choose a basic bicycle chain or upgrade to a high-end version, the chain on your bike is an essential element.
Especially if you ride hard, like endurance riders and bike messengers, then a better chain can help make your ride smoother and cut replacement costs in the long run.
Here are more helpful tips to know about how much a bicycle chin costs.
- It’s generally good to check your cassette when you change your chain. Since these two parts grind each other down, the same motion that stretches your chain is also the thing that wears down sprocket teeth. Changing both out simultaneously can help prevent unexpected chain slippage issues and may stop you from getting in an accident. Sometimes you can change individual sprockets instead of the whole array if you favor some speeds heavily and rarely use others.
- When shopping for a new bike chain, it is best to bring your old chain with you to compare. Even slightly stretched out, you will still have a good visual idea of what your next chain should look like.
- It would be best if you always replaced a worn-out chain promptly. As Cyclist Guy points out, once it stretches and wears out, “…the chain can no longer shift sharply, meaning that it no longer works as seamlessly as before. Not only does its efficiency decrease, but it also causes major harm to other bike components such as the drivetrain.”
It’s always worth it to spend a little bit more money on a new bike chain. Although you can pick up a cheap chain for $15 to $20, those won’t last as long or work as well as high-performance bicycle chains made for endurance riding and races.
Better quality chains start around $25 and can get up above $75. Unusual lengths and custom lightweight bike chain variants cost the most, but they’re durable and can even help you shift more easily.