Hi. If you are like me – you probably hate when your motorcycle is dirty. However, cleaning it too often is not a good thing either.
After all – excessive washing will also bring inevitable scratches and other love marks to your motorcycle paint. Secondly, it may cause corrosion in the electric connectors or damage wheel bearings. Especially while bringing a powerwasher too close while trying to get sticky bitumen off wheel discs and swingarm.
In this article, I’ll share some practical tips and tricks for protecting your motorcycle from getting dirty and scratched so you don’t have to wash it too often.
Prevent Dirt by choosing Smart Motorcycle Accessories
Firstly, Install additional accessories that will make it harder for the dirt to make its way onto the engine casings, swingarm, tank, and other motorcycle parts. This way your bike will get less dirty increasing intervals between washing.
Secondly, make it harder for the dirt to stick to your bike’s panels by treating them with ceramic coating, Vinyl film, or wax.
These accessories will pay for themselves in the long run by saving you time and increasing your motorcycle resale value later on.
#1) Rear Fender
I personally like how the rear fender enhances the look. But practical benefits are also great.
The front fender will do 2 things. Firstly it will greatly reduce the amount of dirt that the front wheel throws at the radiator. Secondly, less dirt will be thrown onto the front of the engine – this area is especially hard to clean due to its complex shape and difficult access due to engine pipes, etc.
#2) Install a Skid Plate that covers the front of the engine
Apart from the front fender extension – consider getting a skid plate that has a high front area. I personally like the skid plate on a new Transalp that comes with a rally pack. It is a lot easier to wash this skid plate than clean the engine casing from the backed-on dirt. You can even treat it with ceramic coating to make it harder for the dirt to stick to it.
If you plan to take your bike on gravel roads – the skid plate will be useful anyway. The only downside is the added weight, however, it is located low and won’t affect the handling in a negative way.
#3) Apply Ceramic Coating
Another way to protect motorcycle paint and plastics from scratches and make it harder for the dirt to stick is ceramic coating.
Have you ever noticed that new bikes and cars tend to get less dirty? The reason for this is primarily due to their fresh polished surfaces. Dirt tends not to adhere as well to such surfaces because they offer less space for it to stick onto.
When you’re riding your motorbike, the paint and plastics get bombarded by the dust and rain, which gradually scratches the clear coat. Over time, these scratches provide an improved grip for dirt.
However, applying a ceramic coating helps counter this issue. It acts as a filler for the clear coat scratches, effectively smoothing the surface once more, and thereby restoring its capacity to ward off dirt.
Additional ceramic coating benefits include protection against fading due to sun rays, hydrophobic properties that repel water, and additional deeper mirror-like shine.
This coating is also easy to clean and maintain, making it a great investment. Most ceramic coatings will easily last 1-2 years before reapplying is required. Make sure to check my best ceramic coating for motorcycle review here.
#4) Apply Vinyl Protection Film
In addition to the rear fender, skid plate, and ceramic coating – apply clear Vinyl protection film to vulnerable motorcycle parts like the headlight, windshield, front fender, TFT display, and rear swingarm.
These surfaces are prone to scratches and damage. The Headlight and windshield are located on the front and any dust from other vehicles will hit them first.
The front Fender and Swingarm are located near the wheels so they get the most sandblasting as you ride.
And TFT display is expensive so it makes sense to spend 5 bucks and not worry about scratching it for the next 5 years.
So the Vinyl film will protect these parts and make it harder for dirt to scratch or stick to them and will keep them looking like new for a long time.
The Bottom Line
In conclusion, maintaining the cleanliness of your motorcycle doesn’t have to be a hard and time-consuming task. By adopting smart preventive measures like investing in smart accessories, applying a ceramic coating, and using Vinyl protection film, you can significantly reduce the frequency and need for intense washes that might damage your bike.
Remember, the goal is not only to have a clean motorcycle but one that is free from excessive wear and tear and retains its value over time. It is better to do another engine oil change than spend an additional hour washing your bike.
Be proactive with motorcycle maintenance and prevent the bike from getting dirty in the first place. After all, every ride should feel like the first ride, and every glance at our bike should be met with the gleam of a well-maintained machine.
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