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Self Serve Wash

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by Disco_Dave, Apr 10, 2011.

  1. Hi All,

    I have been reading up on how to wash a motorbike and most guides refer to hand washing it. Is it possible to use those self serve pressure washers at the commercial car wash places? and if so are there any specific precautions or ways to wash it?

  2. I've done it before - Just don't spray the high pressure jets near the sparkplugs don't concentrate on the chain too much and don't use the spray on wax (it'll get on your tyres)
  3. I use them all the time for my street triple. Just be careful with the high pressure spray as certain parts of the engine are delicate so use the low pressure around those areas and guages etc. If I am organized I'd rather wash it at home but if I'm on my waY somewhere and realize my ride is dirty I'll stop in at an auto wash
  4. keep the spray away from instruments, swing arm and steering head bearings, you can blast the grease out of the bearings.

  5. Be wary around stickers too.

    Not a problem if they're under the clearcoat, but I have seen someone blast the racing stripes off their riced-up Hyundai at a car wash once.
  6. When I bought my first bike 8 years ago I was shown by the guy how to look after it. He recommended that I wash the bike while it is running. Just use a hose with gentle water pressure and a sponge. This is how I have cleaned all of my bikes in the past. Along with all the things the guys have said here. I would probably be carefull with pressure washers. At the end of the day you have to consider that the engineers that design these things expect that the bike will be exposed to the elements. Pretty sure they don't expect you to be riding in a hurricane. I would have thought that the high pressure is to harsh on the exposed and delicate parts of the bike.
  7. Little brother swears by 'california purple' as a polish for chrome and shiny bits.
  8. you can use a hose under normal pressure and do not "jet" the spray as it can increase the pressure enough to force water into electrics. If you suspect water has entered electrics, you should allow the whole bike to drip dry for a few hours before risking any electrical shorting.
  9. High pressure spays have their place, and they can be an excellent first step for getting the worst of the sand and grit off the bike before you start rubbing it with soap and water and a sponge or soft cloth. You don't want to rub grit over your paint. As previously mentioned, there are a number of points on a bike where you wouldn't want to spray with a high pressure spray. Be careful of bearings - steering head - swing arm - and wheel. I wouldn't clean the chain with one, but I've seen people do it. Don't spray into nooks and crannies where there are electrical things, the little imps and demons don't like it. I find that the area around the front of the motor, the underside, the swing arm pivot area (just be careful) and rear shock, come up pretty well. Oh yeah, don't spray on the radiator of a liquid cooled bike. The pressures a proper cleaner can put out will rip them to pieces.