How To Remove A Bicycle Chain – Guided by Pro

Removing a bicycle chain

If your bike chain has a problem and you want to carry out the act of removing it yourself, do not worry. You certainly don’t need to be looking up the numbers of the local bike shops. Below is a straightforward and cost-efficient way of how to remove a bicycle chain.

The act of breaking a chain can be a simple process. The skill of knowing how to remove a bike chain is an essential skill for any bike owner at home. There are numerous ways to carry it out. All this is dependent on whether your bike has a unique link in the chain.

How To Remove A Bicycle Chain

Chains are often known to wear and stretch after a while of usage. It is mandatory to replace it as soon as possible. If not, it can cause major injuries to the user once it stretches.

 The Process of How To Remove A Bicycle Chain 

The process of removing a bike chain in most cases requires the use of a chain tool which necessarily drives out a pin out of the bike chain. Some people may opt to deal with a derailleur’s jockey instead of dealing with the chain.

There are a few tools that you need to replace your worn out chain. They include;

  • A Chain splitter tool (chain breaker)
  • Chain Checker tool
  • Piece of Broken Spoke
  • Quick link Pliers.

A master link is more often found in chains belonging to modern derailleur bicycles. In some cases, you can find that a master link is given in a new chain. The old bikes usually have a master link that can easily be opened using other tools like a screwdriver.

There are a few special cases, but the major manufacturers make the chains compatible with the drive train components. The speed of the drive train should be the same as the one of the chain.

Some bike sellers are usually open and confide from years of know how that some SRAM power products may be able to be used again. It is generally up to the riders to take precautions concerning the re-usage of power lock products.

1. Method one of Two – With a master link

Before beginning, you should mount the bike on a stand. You can support it against a sturdy surface if you don’t own a stand. When you do this, it will lighten the burden of struggling to remove the chain as it will be easily accessible to you.

The task of locating the master link will be easier if the chain is neatly wiped and all the grease and gunk removed. Working with a dirty chain will only make work harder.

A universal chain is used for the sole purpose of pushing the pins outside the chain in a bid to allow the link to be removed. So it should be purchased of its lacking. If the type of bike you own has a specialized tool for its chain, then it is advisable to seek it.

Some people may opt to use pliers, but the procedure can be rather painful without the correct tool. Some chains of some bikes require a special reassembly pin. Such models are Campagnolo. You have to ensure that you have the right part before proceeding, as the chain cannot be returned without the special pin.

Care should be taken as the master link could be seriously damaged if a chain tool drives out its pins.

The links are compatible with Shimano chains, as long as they are for the same number of gears on the cassette. All manufacturers ignore to point out that some of their outputs should be re-used

2. Method Two of Two – Without a master link

It’s not a must for a master link to be used, but the most important thing to consider is not to remove the straight pins all the way. It is advisable to let them stay in the outermost plates, even if the rollers are free.

First, you should put the bike on a solid surface with the chain side facing down. The pedal may need to be separated from the crank so that the bike can be stable while work is in progress. This will lessen the task of chain removal.

There are numerous varieties of chain tools that are on the market. To easily break a chain, a tool that’s big will very easily do the work of breaking the chain.

First, Place the very chain in the tool and then carefully line up the tool’s pin with a big rivet of the chain; then tighten the screw until all the pin pushes out far enough so that it remains generously within the outer plate.

It is complicated to put the rivet in if you had initially pushed it all the way out. You should remove the chain tool’s screw to break the chain.

You can detect for a scoured chain by using a ruler as indicated above but chain wear tools are a very convenient way of making frequent checks.


  • The pin should never be pushed all the way out. It will be difficult to re-insert it.
  • The act of using other tools than the ones recommended may result in instability and damage to bike parts.
  • The chains are not very strong or sturdy, and they are a bit delicate. They should be treated with care.


  • If you feel like your bike has some serious issues, then visit the bike shop. Don’t hold back.
  • Oiling your chain will increase the lifespan.
  • When you feel like the chain is a bit tensed up, just try to move the derailleur forward. The chain will be slackened.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Question: Is it possible to take off the chain without a master link?
Answer: Yes, you only need to push out the pin using a chain tool, and it shall work.

Question: Do I need tools to remove the chain?
Answer: Yes. You will come across some very complex parts of a bike, and it’s only advisable that you have a universal kit nearby. It will come in handy.

Finally, We have come to the end of the article about removing bike chain. Did you get the answer you’re looking to remove a bicycle chain? Probably YES.

I will be happy if you find this article helpful to you. So please don’t forget to leave a feedback below about this bike chain removing guide. Your feedback will boost me more to write more articles like this in future for the bicycle lover all over the world. Happy Pedalling!


Reference: Bike ForumsQuora

Timothy E. Wilson

Hi, I'm Tim I proud to be a bike adviser and bike rider at BikesGuider. I'm most helpful for new bike riders who want to join the bike community. I take it personally when someone wants to buy a new bike with my consult and experience. That's why I'm here to help new rider widely. I have researched, tested and summarized my finding in many articles on this site and I hope you'll learn and enjoy it. I will continue to add articles about bikes, accessories and parts for you. Come back as often as you can. Speak soon and enjoy the reading and ride.