PDA

View Full Version : How to wash/clean a bike?



fat bastard
04-09-2005, 10:24 PM
Being new to bikes I'm wondering what's the best way to clean my bike. There are some streaks on the metal and I want to get everything looking good without screwing anything up. I'm sure it's not as easy as just throwing some soap on it and spraying it down with a hose like you can a car. Are there special wipes or anything like that and when cleaning, what areas should I concentrate on most?
Thanks.

karpsymoto
04-09-2005, 10:45 PM
I'm not an expert, but here are a few ideas that I've heard and will pass on. I've been told to wash the bike when the bike has cooled down; especially the pipes. Also, I just heard a trick of using two spray bottles (one with water and one with cleaner)...first misting the bike to wet it down and then using the second bottle with cleaner. Sponge it down and then spray again with the water. I've heard that Honda makes a great polishing agent, but haven't used it myself. Hope this is some help. I'm sure others will have more to add.

Logan
04-10-2005, 01:48 AM
...I'm sure it's not as easy as just throwing some soap on it and spraying it down with a hose like you can a car. Are there special wipes or anything like that and when cleaning, what areas should I concentrate on most?
Thanks.


Actually that's pretty much it.

I use a standard car wash solution, a bucket & a hose.

S100 is a good cycle cleaner you can use.

You just need to be careful about avoiding direct water spray into chains, bearings, air box, or any electrical components.

Cindy
04-10-2005, 08:17 AM
It depends on how often you ride your bike and how often you clean it. If your bike gets real dirty you will need more than a spray bottle of water and cleaner. I use a water hose and a bucket of sudsy water and wax the bike like I would by car. Try to keep on top of your pipes, because mine are looking pretty lack lustre right now, especially in the front that gets the bugs and most of the dirt. Glass cleaner won't touch it.

Cindy

subvetSSN606
04-10-2005, 10:58 PM
Logan got it. It's basically the same except for avoiding spraying hard on the areas he mentioned. What I do is use a hose with no nozzle (and no thumb) so it's just a gentle wet down and rinse. In between just soap and rag or sponge. When done check for water pooling in bad spots and dry that out... on some bikes water can collect around the spark plugs and cause problems. Then give a waxing.

Or... Try a can of Honda Spray cleaner and polish. Tools needed: The can of spray cleaner and some soft dry rags. Spray it on, wipe it off, then buff with a fresh rag. Try it, you'll like it! ;)

Tom

MagnadelSol
04-15-2005, 05:16 PM
I stronly advocate the Honda Cleaner. It is even sold in non Honda motorcycle shops...very well known.

Fanged Rabbit
05-05-2005, 10:00 PM
Novus "Plastic Clean & Shine" is my weapon of choice for touch ups. It's a plastic cleaning agent that has antifog and dust repellent properties. It will actually clean just about anything but the most stubborn adhesives off of any surface. Works really really well for getting bugs off of headlights, face shields, helmets, sunglasses, etc..

TorontoBoy
05-05-2005, 10:32 PM
Has anyone used the Novus 1, 2, and 3 products? Fanged_Rabbit are you talking about Novus 1?

Fanged Rabbit
05-06-2005, 01:51 AM
Has anyone used the Novus 1, 2, and 3 products? Fanged_Rabbit are you talking about Novus 1?

Yes, I am talking about Novus 1. I use the "fine scratch remover" (2) occasionally and it works well, but takes some technique. I love the "plastic clean & shine" (1) and am going to buy the big bottle tomarrow. It cleans off grease, bugs, dirt, drool, and most adhesive with ease.

On a side note, I have also discovered that waxing the windscreen works well on fine scratches.

LoDownSinner
05-06-2005, 07:52 AM
I used to use the Novus products years ago to make turntable dustcovers look like brand new. The 3 is fairly abrasive, and good for taking out ugly scratches. The 2 is less abrasive and leaves a nice smooth surface. The 3 makes plastics shine like new.

As far as washing and cleaning, like they've siad, it depends on the level of funk. After riding in thunderstorms and muddy campgrounds a couple of weeks ago, my bike was a mess with mud, road grime, and bugs all over it. First a light misting with the hose to get everything nice and damp. Then a higher pressure blasting with the hose to disloge the large chunks of mud and big bug splats. After that, a liberal spraying with S100 Cycle wash, letting it sit for a few minutes to soak in, but not long enough to start to dry. Another fairly high pressure garden hose application to remove the S100 and all of the grime and funk. A run through with an artificial chamios followed by a wimpedown with a big soft beach towel to dry it. Finish up with a light application of Meguire's Spray wax and a quick buff and -- voila! A clean shiny bike in les than half an hour.

For light dirt and dust, the Honda Spray Cleaner and polish is probably the finest stuff on the face of the earth.

Shadow Mom
05-07-2005, 07:21 PM
Lemon Pledge. Works great!