Rust or corrosion is the culprit that ruins your bike’s shine, efficiency, and performance. Unfortunately, with a lack of care, the bike’s metal parts like the chain, sprocket, handlebar, and stem area, all will be affected by rust.
So, to keep your bike tiptop and well performed for longer years, you have to remove rust from these parts now and then.
Though many home products work excellently in removing rust from bikes. But, WD40 is very popular to effortlessly, and fastly do the trick.
In this article, we’ll discuss the entire process of how to remove rust from bike with wd40. However, before that, we also slightly let you know the reasons for rusting multiple parts of your bike. Let’s get started
Why Bikes Catch Rust?
To solve any problem, it’s important to diagnose the reasons behind it. There are several reasons for bike rusting. Where some are absolutely environmental factors, out of your control, and some are your ignoring factors, in your control.
1. Environmental Factors
A bike is a large structure mostly made of metal parts. You have to ride it in an open environment and at that time it comes in contact with many things. Such as
Air has a humidity level, which means water vapor is present in the air. The higher the humidity level, the more moisture in the air. So, when your bike gets exposed to moisture during rides, its metallic components will begin to rust due to humidity.
There are two types of water; freshwater, and saltwater. So, if you live in a coastal area and frequently ride your bike beside the ocean or the salty water-covered roads. There is a high chance your bike becomes rusty due to salt water exposure. As salt is highly corrosive that promotes getting rust more quicker than others.
Older bikes are more prone to rust than new bikes. Because the metal’s protective coatings may wear and tear over time. So, these parts will be highly exposed to moisture and other environmental things. As a result, the bike becomes rusty.
2. Your Ignoring Factors
Riding bikes is more thrilling, exciting, and funny than taking care of it. So, you just ride the bikes every day for commuting, leg workout, and many more reasons for several hours. But, don’t take care of it. Such as
The more you ride the bike, the more its chain has to pass to the sprocket. If there isn’t enough lubing oil in the chain, it becomes more fragile and rusty due to continuous grinding.
If the bike has no or poor rust-resistant coating or paint on its surface, it becomes more susceptible to rust because of the higher moisture exposure rate.
You Own Sweat During Rides
Some of you may generate more sweat during rides. If you aren’t aware of it, the sweat will drip on the bike’s stem area. So, rust will catch on this space. As sweat is salty, and here, salt water exposure is the reason for rust.
Condensation During Storing
Have you ever noticed water drops on the bottle’s surface after getting it out of the freezer?
Yes, that’s the water condensation.
If you store the bike in a damp, humid environment, or open space in winter. Due to storing water drops, and their condensation the bike’s frame, wheel, padel, and handlebars may get rusty.
How To Remove Rust From Bike With WD-40
The thumb rule to remove rust is to displace water from that particular space. Generally, bikers use WD-40 to remove rust because of its formula.
Here, WD means Water Displacement, and 40 means the 40th formula is tried to make it. So, when they apply the WD-40 to the rusty place of the bike, it’ll blow out water to dissolve contaminants.
Now, let’s see the step-by-step guide.
Step 1: Preparing Materials
No matter what you do, you can’t do it barehand. To remove the rust, first, you have to manage some equipment. Such as
- WD-40 spray lubricant
- Clean rags or dry lint clothes
- 60-grit sandpaper
- A wire brush
- Bike chain Lubricant
Step 2: Clean Dry Dirt & Determine The Rusty Area
As you have ridden the bike many times, dry dust, dirt, sand, grime, and many other particles would be on the bike’s frame, stem area, wheel, padel, handlebars, and chain.
So, first, you have to clean the dry dirt. Otherwise, when you apply the WD 40, it’d be greasy.
- Take a dry rag and clean these pisky dirty particles by shaking or wiping.
- Thoroughly clean the bike and in the meantime, notice the entire bike to figure out the rusty surface and the rust stains level.
Step 3: Sanding (Optional)
Sanding the metal parts before applying any lubricant, or rust-penetrating liquid is helpful for quick rust removal. So, if you find rust in the space (handlebars, frame, stem, brakes, saddle release area) that can be sanded with sandpaper, you should do it.
- Take a piece of 4 to 5 inches 60 grit sandpaper and fold it.
- Now start sanding back and forth with the sandpaper on that particular space.
Tip: You should sand the bike’s rusty space from one side and thoroughly go to the other side. And also shouldn’t sand vigorously to avoid getting off paint and scratch.
Step 4: WD-40 Application
When you are convinced that there is no more dry dirt on the bike, it’s time to apply WD-40.
- Pick the WD-40 bottle and shake it for 2-3 seconds.
- Spray WD-40 on the bike’s rusted space. When spraying you should consider rust level because a one-time spray won’t be appropriate for heavy and stubborn rust stains.
- For heavy rust, you have to spray the WD-40 at least 2-3 times.
- After applying the WD-40, leave the bike for 10 minutes to penetrate.
Step 5: Scrubbing To Remove Rust
Due to the chemical reactions of WD-40, the rust becomes soft. So, a little bit of scrubbing will help you to remove them.
- Take a wire brush and gently scrub the rusty surface.
- If you find heavy rust won’t come out with gentle scrubbing.
- Again apply one spray of WD-40, and let it set there.
- Scrub the other space and lastly scrub the heavy rust-stained area.
Step 6: Clean Rust Stains
You must see brown rust stains in your wire brush bristles during scrubbing. In this step, you have to clean that.
- Pick a dry rag and wipe off the extra WD-40 and rust.
- When wiping ensure the rust residue again won’t get attached to the bike from the rug.
Step 7: Apply Bike Chain Lubricant
Finally, you should inject some chain oil into the chain sprocket to lube it and smoothly run when you paddle.
- It’s better to apply the lubricant with an injection.
- When lubing the chain, move the padel and inject the lube into each sprocket of the chain.
How To Prevent Bike Rust?
It’s always better to prevent rust than remove it. Because, though you remove the rust, before that, it’ll slightly damage your favorite bike. On the other hand, if you prevent it, rust won’t get that chance, and also you can avoid the hassle of removing.
As there are two types of reasons for rust. So you should prevent it from both sides.
To prevent Environmental Factors
Yes, you have some limitations to preventing these obvious agents. But, still, you can minimize them.
- If you ride the bike in the rain, after a rainstorm, or on salty water coastal roads. You must wipe the bike after each ride. So, the bike won’t stay in salt exposure for longer times, which makes it rust-prone.
- Try to paint the bike every 2-3 years. It’ll offer you two benefits. One is looking shiny even after many years of riding, and the other is working as a protection shield against rust.
To prevent Ignoring Factors
You have to pay financially for ignorance. So, it’s wise to kick-off the ignorance word out of your life.
- Clean the bike once a week for everyday rides, or once a month for frequent rides.
- Apply oil to the chain each week to keep it lubing and avoid tension.
- If you ride the bike on a hot summer day, use a soft towel on the bike stem area to prevent your sweat from dripping on the bike.
- Cover the bike before storing it with a bike cover and store it in a dry place or your garage.
Why is my bike chain rusting?
Your bike chain rusting due to excess exposure to moisture, mud, and salty water. And if there isn’t enough lubing in its chain sprocket for smooth movement, it accelerates rusting.
Can you ride a bike with a rusty chain?
Yes, you can. But your riding performance will reduce due to rust. Even when you push your padel, the chain will create annoying noise. And if you ride the bike for a longer time, it may permanently damage rusty links.
How to remove rust from bike chain with wd-40?
Spray the WD-40 into the chain links and wait for 10 minutes. After that, scrub with a wire brush, and wipe off with a dry rug.
Removing rust from your bike with wd-40 or any other home product isn’t a hard job, as you might think. Just knowing the steps and properly following them will take a maximum of 1 hour for the entire process.
I am Ryan Ford, a mountain biking enthusiast who loves to explore the outdoors. I also like to go on adventures with friends and anything else that involves being outside. I love my bike because it gets me out of the house and gives me an opportunity to enjoy nature.