You love your Honda street bike from Rick Case Honda Powerhouse. But let’s face it, it’s easy to get your bike dirty from just driving around town. And if you run your bike off road, well you know how dirty it can get.
DIY Bike Detailing: The Basics
So what does it take to give your beloved bike a professional-quality detailing job? We consulted professional detailer Renny Doyle, the owner of Attention To Details, a school for professional detailers. Here’s what he recommends:
Plan On Spending Some Time – If you’re going to do it right, then block off several hours or more to get the job done.
Get The Right Stuff – Properly detailing your bike entails putting out some cash for the correct products and tools. Professional detailers recommend the following products for the best results:
- Meguiar’s Gold Class Car Wash Shampoo & Conditioner
- Metro SK-1 Motorcycle Dryer
- Sonax Full Effect Wheel Cleaner
- Meguiar’s D180 Leather Cleaner & Conditioner (Or Leather Therapy Restorer & Conditioner)
- Meguiar’s M2015 Polish
- S100 Total Cycle Cleaner (or a heavy-duty degreaser diluted 4 to 1 with water)
- 303 Aerospace Protectant
- Sonax Polymer Net Shield
- Household Oven Cleaner
You should also obtain the following equipment if you want to do things correctly.
- Air compressor (or cans of compressed air)
- Air hose
- 100% cotton rags
- Boar-bristle brush
- Airgun blow nozzle
- Microfiber wash mitt
- Microfiber towels
- Extension cord
- Garden hose
- Garden hose spray nozzle
- Power washer
- Power blower
Now that you’ve assembled all of the items you’ll need, it’s time to get started. Be sure to work in a shaded area with your bike and engine cool to the touch. First things first, remove the seat and leather saddle bags, then cover the battery with plastic sheeting. Use plastic wrap and a rubber band to seal off the exhaust pipe.
Pre-Wash & Rinse
Pre-rinse with water using a garden hose sprayer or a pressure washer if you have one. Run the pressure washer at a low setting and stay a distance from the bike to avoid damaging any metal or plastic parts. Use only a light stream of water around the wheel hubs as you don’t want to force water into the bearings.
Fill two buckets: one with the soap and conditioning solution, and another with clean rinse water. Use a damp mitt to prewash the entire bike, avoiding the dash gauges, buttons, and switches. This is just to remove surface dirt and mud. Don’t use the mitt for really dirty or greasy areas. We’ll get to the heavier cleaning later.
Rinse of the bike thoroughly and dry it right away using the motorcycle dryer rather than hand-drying to prevent any spots. Use a microfiber towel to wipe off any excess water.
Now it’s time to move on to the wheels. Clean the wheels, tires, and spokes with an “aluminum-safe” cleaner such as the recommended Sonax Full Effect Wheel Cleaner or a similar product. Use a microfiber cloth to dry thoroughly.
Use Meguiar’s leather cleaner or a similar product to clean the dash. Follow this with Meguiar’s ultra finishing polish, which you can also use on the windshield.
Cleaning the Engine & Driveshaft
The next step is to clean the engine, driveshaft housing, or chain with S100 Total Cycle Cleaner or similar product. Use the boar-bristle brush to get in and remove any caked-on grease. If there’s too much grease for the product to handle, you can dilute a heavy-duty degreaser 4 to 1 in water. Be careful to never use a degreaser at full-strength, as it will damage the bike’s finish and metal parts. You’ll need to put some real elbow grease into this part and keep at it for the best result.
Let the bike dry and then use Meguiar’s M205 Polish with a 100% cotton rag to give the chrome a brilliant shine. Use a leather cleaner/restorer on the seat and saddlebags, but avoid making the seat slick. Wash, rinse, and dry the bike once more, removing any cleaner residue. Use 303 Aerospace Protectant to clean and restore rubber foot pegs, rests, and pedals. Use Sonax Polymer Net Shield to seal painted areas.
Pro Tip From Renny Doyle
Renny Doyle recommends this great trick for getting rid of melted rubber from exhaust pipes. Get some household oven cleaner, test an inconspicuous spot on the pipe for any discoloration then warm up the bike to operating temperature. Spray the cleaner on the exhaust pipes, let the product soak in and wipe the cleaner and rubber with a cotton towel.
Blunders to Avoid
Remember that you shouldn’t use degreasers or other harsh chemicals full strength, and never let cleaners dry on your bike. Don’t use abrasive products such as scrub pad and coarse wheel brushes. Dry each part after you rinse it to avoid spotting. And never use a slick tire dressing as these products could create a slipping hazard.
Well, that’s it. We admit this detailing process took a lot of preparation and hard work. But the end result should have your bike gleaming like new. So take her for a spin and show her off to your friends. We guarantee that they’ll be impressed!
Clean Up With an Awesome Deal at Rick Case Powerhouse
If you’re looking to clean up with a great deal on new Honda motorcycles near Ft. Lauderdale, Rick Case Honda Powerhouse will get you riding with impressive savings on our extensive inventory of Honda Street Bikes, and Honda Cruisers & V-Twins for sale in Davie, Fl. Check out our monthly Manager’s Specials for great savings.
Stop by our Honda motorcycle dealership in Davie and find out how we can get you riding a sensational new Honda bike today. We’re just minutes away at I-75 & Griffin Road, 15701 Rick Case Honda Way, Davie, FL 33331. Call us today at 954-364-3201.