Washing your bike can be broken down into these 5 processes.
If done properly, it takes about 30 minutes to complete.
- Cleaning the bike – plastic, engine, wheels, linkage, fork
- Cleaning the air filter – remove and clean filter and clean air box
- Cleaning the drive train – chain and sprockets
- Lubricating – drive train, cables, air filter
- Finish plastic and apply protector
What you will need:
- Some sort of mild detergent – we use Xtream Clean
- Chain Cleaner – we use Maxima Clean Up
- Filter Cleaner – we use No Toil
- Air Box Cover to cover the intake hole while washing the air box
- Water Displacer – we use Maxima MPPL, WD-40 works fine too
- Plastic Protector – we use Maxima SC1
- Soft bristle brushes get them super market or auto parts store
- Medium sized sponge – Home Depot has a great one in the tile dept
- Soft Scrub for making white plastic bright again
- Water source
- Five gallon bucket
- Clean towels for drying
- If your bike is muddy or very dusty, rinse it off before starting
- Start by putting your bike on a stand so both wheels can spin freely.
Cleaning the Bike:
*Use gentle flow of water, high pressure may be faster but pressurized water is not your friend*
Add water to your bucket and enough soap to make it sudsy. Get your sponge wet and gently scrub the plastic parts and seat. We like to start from the top and work our way down, cleaning one section at a time. Once one section is completed, rinse and move on to the next section. We start by doing all the plastic first then move on to the metal parts.
Cleaning the air filter:
If you have an air box cover, place over the air intake. If you don’t, you might want to get one. Spray entire inside of your air box with light coating of mild detergent, let stand a few minutes. Using sudsy sponge wipe out the inside of air box and surrounding areas.
You should do this every time you go riding. A clean filter will increase performance and keep your bike running longer.
Cleaning the drive train:
While spinning rear wheel with your hand, spray chain with chain cleaner, let stand for five minutes. Rinse chain with water, re-apply chain cleaner. This time, using the nail brush, scrub dirt and debris from chain and sprockets. Rinse chain with water. Click HERE to see our How to Clean a Motorcycle Chain on Your Motocross Bike article.
Apply liberal coating of water displacer to the frame and motor. Be careful not to get it on your brake rotors. After your chain has had enough time to dry (usually 30-40 minutes) apply chain lube. Be sure to spray on each side of all links from the inside and then spray the inside of all rollers. Spin front wheel and spray water displacer into spoke nipples, wipe excess with a clean cloth. Repeat for rear wheel. Again be careful not to get it on the brake rotors. The reason for doing this is so the spoke nipples will turn when you need to tighten one or true your wheels. Check clutch lever for free movement, do the same for throttle body and brake levers. Now is a good time to go over the bike and check that all your fasteners are tight. There’s nothing like losing a sub-frame bolt while riding.
Finishing Your Plastic:
Your plastic will look better for much longer if you take care of it. Even plastic that is old will look better if treated well. We always apply a liberal coating of Plastic Protector to the plastic on our bikes. Not only does it make the bike look better when it’s clean but it makes it easier to get clean when you are washing it. If you don’t have MAXIMA SC1 you can use a plastic protection like Armor All. Just be sure not to get it on the seat, apply the product to a towel then wipe it on the bike. A slick seat may look pretty but is not fun when you are riding. Once you have finished with the plastic it is time to install your clean filter. Now your bike is ready to roll for the next time you go riding.