Motorcycle Maintenance:

Cleaning Your Motorcycle

· Tips and Tricks

Cleaning your motorcycle is a key component for maintaining its appearance, value and longevity. Not only does a dirty bike look brutal, but dirt and grime buildup can also cause damage to both the finish and its mechanics. With the right tools and techniques, keeping your motorcycle clean can be easy and satisfying. In this post we will go through the basics to keeping your ride looking as if it were new.


Step 1: Gather the Necessary Supplies

A vehicle sponge, two buckets, a bike-specific cleaner, sponge brushes for hard-to-reach areas, and towels or shammies for drying. My personal favorite cleaning products are from Chemical Guys.


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Step 2: Spray Down Your Ride 

First and most importantly, make sure your bike is cooled down prior to soaking. Best bet is to wash it in the shade to avoid water spots. Spray with a low-pressure hose or using an auto detail attachment and let it soak for a few minutes to loosen dirt and grime.


Step 3: Bucket & Hand Wash

Set yourself up with both a bucket of standard soapy water and another bucket of fresh water to clean off your sponge. Scrub any dirt and grime with the sponge being careful not to be too aggressive. Use your sponge to squeeze into tighter spaces and grooves while being sure to rinse it free of grime frequently. Wash in sections to ensure attention to detail and that nothing is missed. It is important to avoid using a pressure washer as much as possible as it can cause damage to delicate areas and wear to the clear coat.

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Step 4: Time to Dry

Drying off your bike properly is extremely important as water stains can detract from both the overall look and value of your bike. If you're well equipped financially, Harley Davidson offers the HOG Blaster which claims to dry your ride in minutes. We opt for a combo of a micro-fiber towel and a leaf blower. Once the bike is dry, turn it on and let it run to remove any remaining moisture. Use this opportunity to also clean and lubricate your chain as well.

By following these basic tips combined with some common sense, you can ensure that your motorcycle is clean and protected from the elements. Remember to let your ride cool off prior to cleaning, always use the proper products, and avoid using high pressure when possible. With regular washing and proper care, your motorcycle will continue to run smoothly, hold its value and look great for years to come.