I needed to fix my coaster brake, but I don’t know which grease to use or how to apply it.

When I hold it in my hand, the sprocket turns the hub; and when I turn it backward, the brake engages. But in practice I can’t get the wheel to move with my pedals. I get about half a turn before it seizes up.

Is this BECAUSE I didn’t grease it, or are there other problems? And if not, which grease do I use and how do I apply it?

  • 1
    Can you share a video?
    – jimchristie
    Dec 12, 2022 at 17:43
  • @jimchristie How? How would I film the side of a bicycle as I’m riding it? Dec 12, 2022 at 17:46
  • 2
    @EthanMiller hang the bike in a workstand, or from a beam or tree using some rope so the rear wheel is off the ground. Use one hand to pedal, and record with the other. Even some still photos could be useful if they are well-lit and clear. Outside in sunlight tends to produce better video/pictures compared to inside.
    – Criggie
    Dec 12, 2022 at 19:16
  • 1
    If you can't reproduce the lockup without actually riding the bike, you could ask a friend to help shoot the video.
    – jimchristie
    Dec 12, 2022 at 19:25
  • 1
    @Criggie About two months ago, a spring broke and the brakes came hard on. I replaced it but with no grease I can’t get it to work (obviously) but I’ve never done that before. Dec 12, 2022 at 20:46

1 Answer 1


According to Sheldon Brown, coaster brakes need a lot of grease to function properly. He suggests using a grease with tolerance for high temperatures like automotive brake grease as pointed out by Daniel in the comments section.

Beware if you are using an internal-gear hub with a coaster brake (as opposed to single-speed) as it may need a different type of grease for other parts of the system.

As for how to grease it, the Sutherland's Handbook of Coaster Brakes and Internally-Geared Hubs may be of some help.

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