Washing Routine?

Message
Author
User avatar
JVRR
Elite
Elite
Posts: 198
Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2011 8:37 pm
Real Name: James / Vladimir
Sex: Male
Years Riding: 0
My Motorcycle: 2004 Suzuki GS500F
Location: Issaquah, WA (USA)

Washing Routine?

#1 Unread post by JVRR »

What is everyones washing routine? I suspect it is fairly simple, but wanted to hear what everyone does. Last time I was "into" washing my vehicles it was very simple. Now at Oreilly's they have a million different products! I already have some auto soap, but I got this Maguires Cleaner-Wax... not really sure if I should keep that, and what to do about the metal (both exhaust and engine).

I used to have a three-part Maquires cleaner, wax, and polish. But they did not have that anymore.

Also not sure if anything is different going from car to bike (and more plastic). And last but not least, clean with fairings on? How worried should I be about water spray, I know its meant to take some water, but rain and a hose stream are two very different things!
-JV
Xbox LIVE!: "Vlad is Rad"
PSN: "Vlad_is_Rad"
SCII: "Volodya" (code: 314)

User avatar
jstark47
Site Supporter - Silver
Site Supporter - Silver
Posts: 3538
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2006 2:58 pm
Sex: Male
Years Riding: 16
My Motorcycle: '12 Tiger 800, '03 Trophy 1200
Location: Lumberton, NJ

Re: Washing Routine?

#2 Unread post by jstark47 »

I have a V-strom. The krud and filth are part of the look; it's not supposed to be washed.


:mrgreen:


Seriously, though.... bikes are meant to run in the rain. A little water won't hurt them. Be careful though of using the full force of a spray nozzle around the carbs and airbox. I once managed to get enough water down the front cylinder spark plug well of my Strom to short out that cylinder. A day shut inside a baking hot garage (summer in NJ) cooked enough of the moisture out to get the bike running again. (Which was good, 'cause to get at the front cylinder plug on a Strom ya gotta take the radiator partway off...) :roll:
2003 Triumph Trophy 1200
2009 BMW F650GS (wife's)
2012 Triumph Tiger 800
2018 Yamaha XT250 (wife's)
2013 Kawasaki KLX250S

User avatar
JVRR
Elite
Elite
Posts: 198
Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2011 8:37 pm
Real Name: James / Vladimir
Sex: Male
Years Riding: 0
My Motorcycle: 2004 Suzuki GS500F
Location: Issaquah, WA (USA)

Re: Washing Routine?

#3 Unread post by JVRR »

I want to make sure I am using the right stuff though too. My bike is covered, but stored outdoors so it is about more than just it looking good. Also do not want to put the wrong thing on the exhaust and have it bake on or something!

Thanks for the heads up on the water.
-JV
Xbox LIVE!: "Vlad is Rad"
PSN: "Vlad_is_Rad"
SCII: "Volodya" (code: 314)

User avatar
gsJack
Legendary 500
Legendary 500
Posts: 544
Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2004 12:44 pm
Sex: Male
Years Riding: 30
My Motorcycle: 02 GS500
Location: NE Ohio

Re: Washing Routine?

#4 Unread post by gsJack »

Since I ride my GS500 year around here in NE Ohio splashing thru many salt water puddles every winter I take it to the magic wand type car wash every spring and wash it and towel it off with a paper towel and I'm good to go for another summer.

User avatar
JVRR
Elite
Elite
Posts: 198
Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2011 8:37 pm
Real Name: James / Vladimir
Sex: Male
Years Riding: 0
My Motorcycle: 2004 Suzuki GS500F
Location: Issaquah, WA (USA)

Re: Washing Routine?

#5 Unread post by JVRR »

Nothing fancier?

My dad and his buddies seem to use that spot cleaning polish stuff. Looks great for an hour. They use it for escorts, other than that I do not think they care if their bikes are a little dirty.

Not that I care if its a little dirty, but it needs a real good cleaning, and I wouldn't mind keeping it looking nice. I am sure I will get bored of that in time, as I did with my car (not to mention since it takes riding weather pretty much to be washing weather, why wash when you can ride?)... lol
-JV
Xbox LIVE!: "Vlad is Rad"
PSN: "Vlad_is_Rad"
SCII: "Volodya" (code: 314)

User avatar
sapaul
Legendary 2000
Legendary 2000
Posts: 2383
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2005 3:45 am
Sex: Male
Years Riding: 90
My Motorcycle: 2011 R1200R 07 BMW GS, Kymco 250 little
Location: South Africa

Re: Washing Routine?

#6 Unread post by sapaul »

An old biker once told me, "if you meet a girl that washes your bike, marry her"

So I did.
Attachments
CanonEOS 16 may 2010 029 (Small).JPG
CanonEOS 16 may 2010 029 (Small).JPG (30.14 KiB) Viewed 16771 times
I spent my therapy money an a K1200S
The therapy worked, I got a GS now
A touch of insanity crept back in the shape of an R1200R

User avatar
JackoftheGreen
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 1205
Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2012 8:10 pm
Real Name: Eric
Sex: Male
Years Riding: 10
My Motorcycle: Kawasaki Concours 1400 "Ursula"
Location: Northern Utah
Contact:

Re: Washing Routine?

#7 Unread post by JackoftheGreen »

Here's my routine, once every couple of weeks as I can get to it.

First, this all goes on under my carport, so it's cool and shady. I use my regular garden hose with a fancy multi-setting pistol attachment, and I first soak the bike with the "mist" setting. I don't spray any higher than the steering head, because I'm paranoid about the handlebar controls getting water inside them.

I use a big soft sponge for the actual washing, and I use the "two bucket method", which is where you rinse the sponge between dunks in the suds in a different basin of water. This quaranteens the loosened debris from your sponge from coming into contact with the rest of your wash water, and helps prevent fine swirls in your paint. I forget what brand of soap I'm using right now, but it's a specific automotive wash soap -- maybe Black Magic.

I use the sponge for the painted parts -- tank, fenders, side covers. Then, I switch to a terrycloth shop towel for the hard parts. I scrub all the chrome first (this is also when I scrub my handlbars and mirrors), then the unchromed engine bits and the frame. I hose-rinse between washing the paint and the hard parts.

I've been drying with terrycloth towels, though I think I may be switching to a chamois. I also picked up an air compressor, so I'll be drying the hard-to-reach nooks and crannies of the engine with compressed air in the future.

Every couple months I follow this routine with a waxing, using Meguirs TechWax. If I'm not doing a complete wax, I hit the painted parts with a spritz of QuickWax and buff it out. I don't use any special chrome polish, just buff it to a shine with the terrycloth. I blacken up the engine with a few well-placed shots of foaming tire-shine, getting into the hard-to-reach spots with the muzzle brush from a gun cleaning kit. Ihighly recommend this to keep your black engine components nice and shiny, but be careful not to actually get the tire cleaner on your tires. I plan to get my hands one of those Mother's Powerball things for cleaning my spokes and rims, and I use a regular tire brush with the leftover soapy water from the wash bucket to clean the rubber.

Then, lube and GrungeBrush the chain. After all that's done, I fire the bike up and either let it run for ten or fifteen minutes, or take it for a ride. To dry out all the little crevices, of course. (-:

Wrider
Site Supporter - Gold
Site Supporter - Gold
Posts: 5285
Joined: Wed Aug 16, 2006 1:46 pm
Real Name: Ryan
Sex: Male
Years Riding: 4
My Motorcycle: 2005 Kawasaki Z750S
Location: Colorado Springs, CO

Re: Washing Routine?

#8 Unread post by Wrider »

1. Stuff microfiber cloths into plastic bag, then plastic bag into jacket.
2. Ride to local car wash.
3. Wash, making sure to avoid full water pressure on the chain, seals (fork especially), bearings (like wheel bearings), and exposed electronics.
4. Move bike into sun, pull out microfiber cloths.
5. Dry bike off with cloths.
6. Ride home.
7. Drop off cloths.
8. Take a long enough ride that all of the previous steps were for naught.

If you already have a pretty clean bike but just want to shine it up a bit, I'd recommend Stripper Juice. Yes it sounds horrible, but it honestly works fantastically. 2nd place goes to Honda polish.
Have owned - 2001 Suzuki Volusia
Current bike - 2005 Kawasaki Z750S
MMI Graduation date January 9th, 2009. Factory Certifications in Suzuki and Yamaha

User avatar
Johnj
Site Supporter - Platinum
Site Supporter - Platinum
Posts: 3806
Joined: Fri Nov 17, 2006 7:34 am
Real Name: Johnny Strabler
Sex: Male
Years Riding: 34
My Motorcycle: A Bolt of Lightning
Location: Kansas City KS

Re: Washing Routine?

#9 Unread post by Johnj »

"Stripper Juice"...you wash your bike with gin and grapefruit juice?

:roll:
People say I'm stupid and apathetic. I don't know what that means, and I don't care.
Image
Always wear a helmet, eye protection, and protective clothing. Never ride under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Wrider
Site Supporter - Gold
Site Supporter - Gold
Posts: 5285
Joined: Wed Aug 16, 2006 1:46 pm
Real Name: Ryan
Sex: Male
Years Riding: 4
My Motorcycle: 2005 Kawasaki Z750S
Location: Colorado Springs, CO

Re: Washing Routine?

#10 Unread post by Wrider »

Johnj wrote:"Stripper Juice"...you wash your bike with gin and grapefruit juice?

:roll:
What can I say? I like it extra sticky, if you know what I mean... :laughing:
Have owned - 2001 Suzuki Volusia
Current bike - 2005 Kawasaki Z750S
MMI Graduation date January 9th, 2009. Factory Certifications in Suzuki and Yamaha

Post Reply