There are only two scientific ways to maintain the beauty of your motorcycle, either you wash it or keep it hidden underneath a cover and only showcase it when you have friends or family over, but what’s the fun in that?
Knowing how to preform motorcycle detailing is a guranteed way for you to prevent some future damages, save money in the long haul and keep your bike looking the way it deserves.
Your bike has many intricate pieces to it, such as the chrome and special fibre materials,it is always in your best interest to regularly treat your motorcycle to a wash as to remove any unwanted corrosive properties you can pick up from riding it around the city, such as salt and tar!
Step 1: Get Prepared For The Motorcycle Detailing
There is just a few things you should get ready for when you are performing a motrocycle detail or auto detailing in general and it is always best to have them prepared and ready to go before you realize there is no soap left right after you gave it a rinse.
Not all car detailing products work the same way or have the same benefit for a motorcycle as they do for your car, make sure you purchase the right detailing sprays and motorcycle detailng soaps that are specifically designed for that type of surface to prevent damaging or paint fading.
Make sure you have all of the materials and equipment you will need by following the list below:
- Motorcycle Wash Mitt: You want a soft material that is desgined specifically for bikes so that you can careful take off contaminents such as dirt and grime without scratching your motorcycle.
- Brushes: Mostly used to clean the intricate parts of a motorcycle wheel spokes where you cannot reach with just your hands or the wash mitt.
- Drying Cloth / Chamios : You always want to dry your vehicle after giving it a car wash and the same rule applies for motorcycles as well, you need, once again, a soft and delicate product that works smoothly on the paint and chrome of your bike.
- Microfiber Cloth: The universal auto detailing tool of choice, so many things can be done with a few microfiber cloths to make your motorcycle detailing experience easier and a lot more useful. A microfiber can be used for many things, all the way from touch ups on the paint in case you miss a spot to apply leather cleaner and conditioner on your seat.
Step 2: Get Your Motorcycle Detailing Efficiently
Now that you have prepared everything you need in order for you to get started on your motorcycle detailing journey, it is time to prepare the motorcycle and your workplace.
Before you start to wash your motorcycle, make sure that it is cool, and not in a sunny location.
Even a warm engine when in contact with cold water may cause serious damage to the engine itself and the chrome surrounding it.
Another thing to be weary of is where you place your motorcycle, make sure your bike is out of direct sunlight as water dries up quickly in the heat and tends to leave behind water spots and streaks, which need to be touched up later on, adding to your workload.
Step 3: Secure All Exhaust Pipe Holes
Motorcycles and other vehicles are progessively getting better at being resilient to water damage but it never hurts to actually go the extra step and plug your exhaust.
You simply stick a rag, a microfiber cloth,ruber glove or a special exhaust pipe plug some companies produce inside of your exhuast pipes.
This process is most common when auto detailing a dirt bike, however is it definetely something to consider when performing a motorcycle detail to prevent a pool of water forming within your exhaust pipes.
Step 4: Time The Motorcycle Wash
Alright, you have all the products, your motorcycle is in a nice shaded area, and you have fully prepared yourself for the motorycle detailing, it is time to finally get this started.
When detailing your motorcycle it is best to remember that you must use the least amount of effort in order to preserve the quality of your chrome and paint.
In other words, when you are washing and scrubbing your bike, it is often considered a good practice to first remove smaller traces of contaminents in order to prevent scratching and swirls on your exterior.
To prevent damage to more sensitive areas, use a motorcycle detailing spray with a microfiber towel to remove the small dust and grime particles so that you do not cut through with any attached pebbles or small grind.
Start the preparation with a simple spray down of motorcycle detailing spray to remove bugs and other road contaminents, one thing to keep in mind is that this process needs to be done on a dry and cool surface.
After allowing the motorycle detailing spray to settle and work it’s magic on your bike, spray down the entire ride with a hose.
Although you may be tempted to completely obliterate any dust remains, it is not a smart idea as your bike is made of a lot of intericate parts that can be easily damage by a high powered pressure washer.
Step 5: Get Ready For The Soap In Your Detail!
Now that you have gotten through the initial rinse cycle, you can get to the part where you truly see your motorcycle transforming right before your eyes all thanks to auto detailing.
This is the part of motorcycle detailing that makes the biggest difference in the aesthetic look of your ride as you will find out soon enough.
A few tips and tricks to make the motorcycle detailing process go by a lot easier.
- Just like a car wash, it is best to work from the top of your motorcycle to the bottom so that you do not have to spray down some areas multiple times.
- Ensure that the chemical you are using is the right product for the surface you are treating, this can be done simply by looking at directions or reading the precautions that are mentioned on the label of the bottle or container.
- We spent a lot of time explaing how damaging even a wash mitt or sponge can be. Make sure if you drop your mitt or it picks up dirt,grime or contaminents that you wash out the debris or get a new cleaning utensil altogether to prevent and harm to the motorcycle.
- Water, chemicals and soap will get over your brakes and chains, it is really unpreventable, however you should not scrub clean these parts as they contain a special grease-like coating that helps them function correctly.
Step 6: Motorcycle Wash, Time To Wash Your Bike
This next process should be done immediately after you finish the previous step as you do not wan’t unwanted soap and chemicals lingering on your motorcycle surface as it could cause staining or increase the chances of getting swirls or scratches.
You want to do a thorough job of this process as a true motorcycle wash removes all contaminents, debris and chemical residue as well.
Step 7: Onto The Drying Process In The Motorcycle Detail
One of the best ways for you to dry your motorcycle after a rinse is to use an air compressor or leaf blower, this gives you a hands free approach to drying allowing scratch prevention and saving time and energy.
The drying process should be done as quickly as possible after a motorycle wash to prevent saturated or built up water spots as that can increase the rate of rust build up.
If you would prefer a more hands on method to drying you can simple use a chamois to pick up any water drops.
Some people may prefer to simple ride their motorcycle to dry it but you have keep in mind, since you are riding in one direction, some area of your motorcycle may not dry up and may need to still be dried up later through the chamois or blow dryer method in order to prevent future damages.
Step 8: Apply Lubrication To Those Key Areas
Your motorcycle detailing process is almost at an end and your ride has gone through a lot so far, from removing the contaminents off the paint with a motorcycle detailing spray, to a complete soap wipe down to multiple rinses.
Not only is it the paint that has endured all that, it is also parts of your bike that need to remain lubed and oiled in order to work efficiently.
Once you have removed any soap build ups and the chain has dried up, it is also a great idea to apply some lubrication to the chain to keep it performing as best as it can.
Step 9: Wax Your Bike For That Detailing Shine
By now you have already brought that life back into your bike, you got down and dirty and really cleaned your ride but why not keep it that way for as long as you can?
By giving your motorcycle detailing experience the true end it deserves with a thick coat of wax, not only do you create an extra layer of protection on top of your paint, you also preserve the nice aesthetic appeal, that you worked so hard for, for a very long time.
There are many motorcycle detailing sprays, soaps and waxes out there on the market, make sure to do proper research to see what would work best with your bike and what would look and perform the best as well.
If you feel like we missed any tips or advice, make sure to leave it in the comments below or contact Drip Detailing if you have any further questions or need to clarify any part of this process!