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While washing my bike, should I try to avoid water on the open part - like the chain? Or, i forget about everything and just give it a good wash? Is there any part where I shouldnt put soap?
 

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When I wash my 82 GPz1100 B2 model, I use a bucket of car washing soap followed by a low pressure water rinse. Avoid the high pressure car washes as the soap could get into the electrical conectors later causing them to corrode/become intermittent.

Wheel bearings can also have their lubrication compromised/flushed out using a high pressure washer.
 

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My hat is made of tinfoil
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Avoid pressure washers for sure.
A nice spray off with a garden hose, then a bucket of soapy water and a terry cloth wash..........rinse again with the hose, then shammy it dry.


then clean chain with a little WD40 and a rag, and lube it with bel ray chain lube.

Never sray water hard near the head bearings, swingarms bearings, suspension linkage, fork seals, or wheel bearings.
 

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garden hose, or you can put a sprayer attachment on it. just make sure you use a "soaker" setting rather than a spray setting. wet the bike, wash with car wash soap, wash it off and voila! clean and re-lube the chain and youre good to go.

also, if you dont want or need to do a full-on cleaning go pick up some Plexus. get some anyway...its GREAT for cleaning off bugs and tar, and easily cleans off road grime and brake dust from the wheels. im serious...just spray it on, let it sit for a couple seconds, and wipe off. wheels are clean as a whistle. road tar comes right off with it. also works great on your helmet visor too!
 

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Little AL
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I've taken to drying my bike with a leaf blower (sans the leaves). It gets rid of any water droplets hanging on that will later leave a streak. I got this tip from an HD rider who washes his bike more than he rides it. :tongue:
 

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Agrred with never using a pressure washer - that is unless you're blasting clean bike that's bee sitting under a coat of mud for 10 years.

However, the main reason is to avoid getting water into the air filter. That's the worst place to get it since the bike won't run right if it can't breath.

Generally, unless you've got a bad seal (which would need replacing anyway), you can't really hurt those. Remember: those seals are good for some serious abuse. They often are rated to prevent 50, 70 and even 100 PSI of fluid from leaking out. They wouldn't be much good if they failed at 25 or 30. Of course, it still isn't a good idea to force water at them too often beyond a hose or the normal force of rain spray when riding.

As far as the electrical, that's why you need to use a coating of dielectric grease around couplers and splices. It's a good idea to go over the bike each off season and clean and re-coat those connections. A pressure washer is really only bad for those (if properly taken care of) in the sense it can wash away those protective coatings you carefully applied. Old couplers can let water leak in, but the bike has a certain tolerance for that sort of thing. Most of the most vulnerable connectors are protected under the seat or in the headlight. That being said, I'd be concerned about high pressure streams around the gauges and connections for hydraulic systems, which both have moisture absorbing fluids inside them. If moisture in the air can degrade those fluids, then a high pressure stream is likely to, as well.

One other issue might be forcing water up the exhaust unintentionally. While it won't likely get far enough in to hurt anything in the motor, it might collect in there and cause corrosion if it isn't dried out right away (such as if you wash the bike after a ride, then call it a night.

My other concern with pressure washers is the possibility of knocking something loose, like some of the smaller tubes and hoses with smaller and weaker clamps - or even damaging one of them by bending it too hard the wrong way. However, that is usually a sign you haven't properly kept up on your maintenance if that happens. In that case, the pressure washer may have been doing you a favor. It probably means a new clamp or hose is in order.

You can't go wrong with a low pressure hose and a bucket of suds. Just be sure to do a water rinse before running any kind of wash rag or sponge across your paint. You want to rinse off the grit first or your rag will drag it across your paint and scratch it.

If you like to wax your ride, do it about every 2-3 washes and use cleaner that will strip the old wax first. That way, you'll get an even coat and you'll remove anything that has embedded itself in the old coating. You'll know the old wax is gone when the water stops beading. Between waxings, use a much more gentle cleaner that will preserve the wax coating.
 

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I've taken to drying my bike with a leaf blower (sans the leaves). It gets rid of any water droplets hanging on that will later leave a streak. I got this tip from an HD rider who washes his bike more than he rides it. :tongue:
+10000..... i used to work in a bodyshop,so everytime i washed my bike i'd use compressed air to dry it off and it doesn't get any better than that. I did the same thing with my car and the leaf blower,it's not good to leave all that water in the cracks and such because it can cause corrosion overtime on some areas.
 

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I've taken to drying my bike with a leaf blower (sans the leaves). It gets rid of any water droplets hanging on that will later leave a streak. I got this tip from an HD rider who washes his bike more than he rides it. :tongue:
+10000..... i used to work in a bodyshop,so everytime i washed my bike i'd use compressed air to dry it off and it doesn't get any better than that. I did the same thing with my car and the leaf blower,it's not good to leave all that water in the cracks and such because it can cause corrosion overtime on some areas.
The only thing I would caution you on in doing it that way, is make sure the area around the bike is clean so you don't sandblast the bike in the process of drying it.
 
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