TOP TIPS ON MAINTAINING YOUR MOTORCYCLE

Maintaining your bike is key to spotting any impending problems and ensures it remains in tip top condition. MotorCycle Direct have released their top tips for cleaning and maintaining your bike.

Remember the thrill of riding your motorbike away from the showroom for the first time, all shiny and new? Well, with a regular cleaning regime you can retain the appearance of your ride and ensure greater safety too.

When cleaning a bike you’re more likely to spot problem areas such as leaks, loose hoses, corrosion, worn tyres etc and avoid costly repairs or accidents further down the line. Keeping a bike looking like new also means it won’t devalue as quickly and the bike would be valued at a much better price when it comes to selling.

However, there are some important ‘dos and don’ts’ that people need to be aware of when cleaning a motorcycle so as not to damage the bodywork.MotorCycle Direct has produced the following guide to help when cleaning a Motorbike.

  • Make sure the bike engine is cool before any attempt to wash it in order to avoid cracking the engine, damaging the chrome or leaving streaks and spotting on the bodywork.
  • Wash the bike in a shady spot to prevent spotting and streaking caused by quick drying in the sun.
  • Avoid using pressure washers since these can cause damage to the paintwork, electrical connections etc.
  • Start by hosing the bike down from top to bottom to loosen any dirt or bugs that have accumulated. If these prove particularly stubborn, rinse several times to help soften them up ready for cleaning. This will reduce the likelihood of scratching your bike when you come to wash it.
  • Before beginning, hand washing your bike and remove any watches, rings, belts with metal buckles etc. to avoid scratching the paintwork.
  • Use the manufacturer’s recommended cleaning agent. They will tell you whether this should be sprayed onto your bike or added to a bucket of warm water. Never use washing-up liquid as this contains salt and can cause corrosion.
  • Begin washing the bike from top to bottom with clean water and a soft cloth. Many bikers avoid sponges because they can pick up grit or dirt that could scratch the bike. Cleaning mitts or microfibre cloths could be a better option but ensure these are rinsed clean regularly so they remain free of dirt.
  • Use brushes to remove stubborn dirt and dust that gathers in cracks and crannies, e.g. in between wheel spokes. A toothbrush or bottle brush comes in handy.
  • Once you have given the bike a thorough clean, hose down with clean water one or more times to ensure there is no further trace of cleaning products.
  • Leave the bike to stand so most of the water has run off then dry your bike thoroughly with a good quality chamois leather. Make sure water isn’t allowed to pool in cracks and crannies to avoid them corroding.
  • If the water beads when the bike is rinsed it may not require polishing. If it runs off in sheets, polish could offer useful protection. Make sure the polish has been recommended by the manufacturer and follow their instructions for use.
  • Treat the saddle and leather accessories with products recommended by the bike’s manufacturer.

Following a regular cleaning regime means you will get more pleasure from your ride. It will also keep you alert to safety issues and ensure better lifetime value from your motorcycle. Happy cleaning!

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