So you’ve taken the plunge, bought the new rig, thrashed her around the local trails, now she’s a mess. Here’s our quick little guide to get your bike shining like the day you bought it.
First up let’s chat about why it’s important to clean your bike. Starting with the obvious, it just looks bad. No one wants to rock up to the trail with week old mud splattered up the frame, don’t be that person. Then of course there’s mud, debris, grime, sweat – these are not your friends. Over-time without proper cleaning they will cause your rig to deteriorate, we are talking about damaged paint and potential corrosion.
Now let’s get into it – Cleaning your bike 101
What you’ll need
- Clean Rags – keep a stack on hand for grease/oil & drying
- Brushes – Got any old toothbrushes laying around?
- Water – Now don’t go crazy, no high pressure hoses this can damage your rig.
- Degreaser – this will clean up ‘gummy’ areas such as your bike chain.
- Chain lubricant – properly lubricating your chain helps to extend the life of your drivetrain. (Use wet or dry depending on your riding conditions)
- Bike-specific cleaner (optional, but very handy – look for brands such as Peaty’s)
There are three main steps to washing your bike
- Wash your bike frame
This can be done using bike-specific cleaner or warm, soapy water; and brushing gently to remove any dirt and grime.
- Clean and lubricate your chain
Clean using a rag and degreaser. After your degreaser has dried, add drops of lubricant onto the chain, ensuring to get every link. Then allow this to dry and remove any excess.
- Lubricate your brake and derailleur levers and cables
After washing your bike apply a couple of drops of lube to the lever pivots and the barrel adjusters. Check your brake & derailleur cables frequently, relubricating occasionally.
We also recommend scheduling regular maintenance checks, monthly or weekly depending on how often you ride.