It's been a long day.
Lots of fun doing what you do best.
Riding dirt bikes.
Now you've got to clean it.
We've all been there, and if we're honest, have mumbled obscenities under our breath when the realization that our day of fun turns into at least an hour long pain in the you-know-what chore. It is best practice to get your dirt bike into a really clean bike after a day of riding on the track or trails but sometimes, truth be told, we've simply run out of gas. It's easy to fill up your dirt bike not so easy to recharge after hours of riding. It also might be dark or really late. Cold. Worse - you crashed and just glad to be home in one piece.
In any event, sometimes the after ride clean-up is simply not in the cards but you know better than to leave your bike caked in mud overnight. So, if you're ever faced with a daunting clean-up job but haven't the strength to do it or other circumstances prevent you from getting it done there's an acceptable minimum you can do before tackling the must-do detailed work another day.
Riding in these conditions is exhausting but you can't leave your dirt bike like this overnight
1. Hose Your Bike Down
Hosing off your bike is mandatory! Get the big chunks of mud and crud off the fenders, tires, wheels and drive parts. Returning the next day to hardened soil all over your dirt bike adds considerable amount of cleaning time plus it's just not good for the long term benefit of the bike. You'll have a very hard time getting in between crevices and other small places where dirt and grime like to lurk and set up camp for the long-term.
2. Use a Pressure Washer
You can spend 15 minutes spraying down your bike with a hose or five minutes using a pressure washer. If you're riding Moto, some tracks might provide a pressure washer at the facility or quite often other riders bring their own and usually more than happy to lend it out. If you can get the job done prior to heading home then you've saved even more time.
3. Use Cleaning Products
Especially helpful when using a low pressure hose, cleaning or wash solutions break down dirt, oil and debris. Spray on after getting the large chunks of mud off or right away on the days when you've got a thin film of crud all over your bike. Spraying down your bike with a wash or cleaning solution is also a good way to get the hard to reach places and once it penetrates and breaks up the dirt it all washes away with water.
4. Get a Scrub Brush
A regular garden hose is no match against thick, caked on mud and even a pressure washer takes some time to really bust through so if you're trying to save time use a scrub brush and sweep away the muck as you're using a hose or pressure washer. Better, get a friend to spray as you brush.
The bottom line? If the post-ride cleanup is a no-go when the day is done, at the very least you need to get as much mud, dirt and oil off your bike as possible. If you can get your bike hosed down at the track your day is done but if not, just spend another 10 to 15 minutes at home and come back the next day refreshed and ready to give your bike the love she deserves!
We can't promise this, but don't be surprised that once started you'll stop when your bike is ready to ride again.
More Quick-Cleaning Tips
Additional tips to make the clean-up process smoother and easier include using pre-oiled air filters. Cleaning these suckers is not fun and it's messy plus it takes a lot of time. So if you're not one for having a lot of patience just take out the old one and pop in a new already oiled filter. Some riders get three or four pre-oiled filters, stick them in a bag, ready for duty. Once you've collected two or three dirty filters, clean them all at once.
If it's time to change the oil take out the drain plug (after the wash down) and let it drain overnight and promptly add oil the next day when you return for the more thorough cleaning and lubrication. Just make sure not to forget you've let the oil out.
Written By: AndrewT