CHAINS AND SPROCKETS
$100 Replace sprockets and chain
$20 Replace chain only
WHAT IT DOES AND THE PROBLEMS
Your chain and sprockets are the drive system for your bike. Having a chain that is too tight will cause your bike to have to work harder costing you valuable time and power. It can also limit your suspension travel. A chain that is to loose, besides being dangerous by jumping off your sprocket, will also cost you valuable power by using the energy to get through all that chain slack.
Worn out or damaged sprockets can also be dangerous. Heavily worn or broken teeth can cause your chain to jump off and also reduce your power to the ground.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR
A lot of side to side play in your chain, axle slider locations and noise are the most common chain indicators. Broken off teeth, teeth that look like waves or any abnormal wear.
HOW TO FIX
We typically recommend the changing of your sprockets and chain at the same time, especially on street/road bikes. Off-road/dirt bikes, you can get away with replacing individual parts but once you are able to visually notice issues it is a good idea to replace everything as a set and start fresh. Using a new chain on worn sprockets will accelerate the wear of the individual parts. Changes to the gear ratios is very common on off-road/dirt bikes making changing all parts every time not necessary.
Proper maintenance, including regular cleaning and tension adjustment, on your chain and sprockets is critical to getting these parts to last. Similar to dirt getting through air filters, dirt acts like sand paper, grinding away at the sprocket teeth and wearing chain links.