There are several reasons why someone who owns a motorcycle would want to clean and detail their bike. The most obvious reason is that they want to make sure their bike continues to perform efficiently and look good when its on the road.
It is also important to clean a motorcycle if you are planning to sell it. By having a showroom-looking new, spotless motorcycle for sale, you will be able to command a higher price.
Lastly, by keeping a motorcycle detailed and cleaned, you will be able to notice possible mechanical issues that you may not otherwise see when the bike is dirty.
The Pre-Wash Process
Tools Required: garden hose, motorcycle or automotive cleaning detergent, microfiber towel, waterless cleaning solution
The best way to ensure a clean and shiny motorcycle is to pre-wash it. You can take a garden hose and spray the bottom of the motorcycle. By doing this, you will be removing the larger pieces of debris as well as some of the dirt and grime. You will also protect the surface of the motorcycle from unnecessary scratches.
Take a microfiber towel and a motorcycle or automotive cleaning detergent to wash the surfaces of the bike. Gently scrub with the towel and then rinse the detergent off with the hose. You should avoid using harsher detergents such as dishwashing detergents to clean your motorcycle unless it is extremely dirty and greasy.
You can also choose to use a waterless motorcycle wash solution like this if your bike is not excessively dirty. Wet the bike with the solution and then wipe the bike clean with the microfiber towel.
Alternate the towels to prevent micro-marring. This can happen to surfaces that have soft paint.
Cleaning The Wheels
Tools Required: wash soap, tire cleaner, chrome polish, wax
Because the wheel spokes and the wheels are made from separate materials, it is best that they should not be washed at the same time.
Begin by washing the tires and wheels with a tire cleaner and a wash soap. These two products will remove road film and oil from the tire dressings.
After you have cleaned the wheels and tires and they are dry, you can then proceed to use a protective polish on the rims. The rims can be polished with a product designed specifically for chrome, and then wax can be applied to make the rims shine.
For uncoated aluminum, you can use an aluminum polish. On the other hand, you can use the same products on coated aluminum as you use on the paint, and then the metal can polished and waxed.
Cleaning The Dash
Tools Required: UV protective cleaner
It is important that you pay close attention to the types of cleaners you use on this part of your motorcycle. The dash not only contains most of the bike’s electrical wiring, but there are also several different types of surfaces on and around the dash that may not be compatible with certain cleaning products. This also means that you want to avoid getting this area of the bike wet, if possible.
With that being said, you can use a cleaning product that offers UV protection for the plastics. These types of products are designed to work with colored and clear plastics, and they can clean the dash area safely while also providing a layer of protection.
Cleaning The Engine
Tools Required: soft bristle brush, degreaser, motorcycle wash soap
The amount of work it will take to clean the engine will depend on how dirty it is. For example, if the engine is not too dirty, you can use a soft bristle brush and motorcycle wash soapy to quickly clean the engine. A handheld vacuum, like the ones at Vacuum Groom website, can be useful to suck up dirt in the crevices of the engine.
However, if the engine is extremely dirty, you will need a degreaser.
No matter what cleaning method you choose, you should only clean the engine when it is cool and out of direct sunlight.
Keeping your motorcycle clean is important, not only for performance reasons, but to also keep it looking its very best. By using the right tools during the cleaning process, your motorcycle will surely draw crowds and even give you confidence to ask top dollar if you want to put it up for sale.…