How To Detail A Motorcycle Like a Pro

Who doesn’t love to ride a pristine motorcycle? But many of us don’t know how to detail a motorcycle at home to give it a fresh look without taking it to a detailing center?

Detailing the motorcycle means keeping it in good shape with precise finishing and color. It prevents your motorcycle from any mechanical issues, plus it enhances the resale value of your bike even after regular use for years.

So, dive in now to find out how to detail a motorcycle to give it a brand-new look!

How Often Should You Wash Your Motorcycle?

Wash Your Motorcycle

It’s recommended to wash the motorcycle every two weeks. However, make sure to dry out the bike parts, ultimately preventing any spots or residues over the motorcycle. If you are a frequent motorbike user, it’s best to pay immediate attention to your motorcycle to have no metallic damage or paint damage.

How To Detail A Motorcycle – Step By Step:

Wash the Motorcycle:

You must be wondering what the first step in washing a motorcycle is? The first step in detailing a motorcycle is to wash the motorcycle. Make use of a garden hose for washing the bike from the top towards the bottom, ensuring to rinse off the bike thoroughly. Rinsing allows complete removal of dirt pieces plus debris, preventing any scratches from the motorcycle when you use cloth.

Dry Out the Motorcycle’s Surface Using Microfiber Cloth:

What to use for drying out the surface of a motorcycle? Use microfiber, high-quality fabric, or skin wash mitt made of sheep’s skin plus motorcycle-specific detergent or automotive to gently clean the motorcycle’s surface. Rinse the soap from the bike using the hose. Make sure to avoid the use of harsh soaps, which can make your motorcycle greasy.

Go for Waterless Washing Method:

Is there any way to perform a waterless washing method? There is also a waterless way of washing the motorcycle if it’s extremely dirty. Make use of a microfiber towel with a waterless washing solution. Just wet the bike using the solution and then wipe it off using a cloth.

Make sure to switch to new, clean clothes and avoid any micro-marring that can occur on bikes’ soft paints.

Wash the Motorcycle’s Wheels and Spokes:

Wash the Motorcycle's Wheels and Spokes

What to use for washing the wheels of the motorcycle? Next, wash the motorcycle’s spokes and wheels separately after washing the body as they are manufactured using different materials. Make use of some soap with mild tire cleaners. Wash the wheels to get rid of oils from tires or road film.

Apply Chrome Polish on Wheels:

How to use chrome polish for your bike’s wheels? Once the tires are completely dry and clean, wax and polish the rims. Make use of chrome polish for the complete finishing of the wheels. Apply wax to protect the shine of the wheels. Make use of aluminum polish for any uncoated aluminum and coated aluminum over the motorcycle’s paint that makes it look waxed and polished.

Clean Motorcycle’s Dash Correctly:

How to clean electrical components and the dash of a motorcycle? Motorcycle’s dash comes with electrical components which you need to clean but avoid making them wet. Make use of a cleaner that offers UV protection to the plastic components in the dash for complete cleaning and protection. Such cleaners can also be used over a plexiglass windshield.

Properly Clean the Motorcycle’s Engine:

Clean the engine

Wondering how to clean the engine of your motorcycle? Clean the engine of the motorcycle. It all depends on the dirt of the motorcycle’s engine. Make use of a soft bristle brush with bike soap or use a tough degreaser.

Make sure to keep your bike’s engine clean and cool underneath the shade. Ensure to use engine-specific compounds for cleaning and avoid corrosive compounds which might damage your bike’s paint, cloth, chrome, or leather over the motorcycle.

Polish Chrome Parts of Motorcycle Properly:

How to polish the chrome parts of the motorcycle? Like the controls and dashboard, you need to polish chrome over the bike within a non-humid, shaded area. Polish the chrome twice with a small break in between. Once you are done polishing, apply a wax coat to extend the bike’s polish life.

Clean Leather Seats Properly:

Clean Leather Seats Properly

How to clean the leather seats of the motorcycle? Several leather types are used for the motorcycle, including natural aniline leather, coated leather, and high-quality vinyl, which requires different sets of care for treating the seats. Make use of a non-stick protectant for keeping the seats fresh and offer them a long life.

Make sure to rinse off the motorcycle thoroughly so that there is no soap leftover from the bike and there are no spots or residues left.

Completely Dry Off the Motorcycle:

Is it essential to dry off the motorcycle, and how to do it? Make use of dry, microfiber cloth for drying the motorcycle thoroughly and use a dryer plus microfiber cloth to remove excess amounts of water. Make sure you don’t ruin the detailing of the bike, and don’t leave any spots.

Treat the motorcycle paint differently by applying a layer of paint sealant over the bike or a wax coating.

Avoid These Motorcycle Cleaning Mistakes:

Avoid These Motorcycle Cleaning Mistakes
  • Never use a household degreaser or full-strength automotive products. Such products can strip off the paints and satin aluminum. Make sure to avoid household spray cleaner or dishwashing detergent.
  • Avoid letting cleaners sit over the bike parts for more than a few minutes. Rinse the areas of the bike entirely once you clean them using water. Don’t allow cleaner or diluted degreaser to dry off over the bike.
  • Avoid using coarse wheel brushes or scrub pads over the bike.
  • Make sure to work in shades and do not clean the motorbike in sunny areas. Make sure to dry all parts of the motorcycle once you rinse it, which prevents any water spots.
  • Avoid using tire dressing over the bike. The products used for the bike feature silicone, which can result in safety and slipping hazards.
  • Avoid washing the bike when the pipes and engine are hot.

How Can I Make My Motorcycle Engine Look New?

Is your motorcycle engine getting faded or dull, and you are seeking ways to maintain it newly? You need to properly clean the engine and get rid of all dirt and debris, and you might need bike washing soap or a soft bristle brush for initial washing.

You can also make use of a tough degreaser. Whatever cleaning method you use, clean the engines properly in the shade using proper cleaning compounds. Avoid using corrosive compounds as they might damage the motorcycle parts.

Can You Apply A Ceramic Coating on The Bike After Detailing?

Are you a newbie who is wondering about detailing the motorcycle? Wondering whether to apply the ceramic coating on the bike after detailing?

Yes, you can apply a ceramic coating on a bike after detailing. Ceramic coating saves your paint from any scratches, UV light, and more. This allows your paint to last for a longer duration.

Ceramic coating creates a heat-proof finish with a non-porous hydrophobic layer which prevents the oxidation process plus keeps the surface neat and clean. The hydrophobic effect prevents the rain or dirt from sticking over the bike.


How Much Does It Cost to Detail A Motorcycle?

The cost of detailing the motorcycle is around $100-$200 if you plan on doing the detailing yourself. But a professional might charge you anywhere between $300 to $600.

How Long Will It Take to Detail A Motorcycle?

Motorcycle detailing is done manually, which means it will take around 4-8 hours to complete the motorcycle regardless of its size or type.

Can I Wash My Bike with Shampoo?

You can use a mild shampoo for cleaning the bike, but it’s best to get your hands on bike shampoo.

Is It OK to Pressure Wash A Motorcycle?

You can use a pressure wash to wash the motorcycle but avoid using pressure washers for cleaning the chain. The chain of the motorcycle comes with metal links and has unique small rubber grommets. These ring grommets make sure to keep grease inside while the dirt outside. If you use a pressure washer, the powerful water stream can easily penetrate the gap between links and rings, which can push the dirt inside with water and grime, reducing the chain’s entire performance.

Can You Hose Down A Motorcycle?

Yes, you can use a hose to wash down the motorcycle. However, ensure to use slight pressure as the water might move inside the engine with extra pressure leading to a buildup of grime and dirt inside the machine.


There you have it. Now you know everything about how to detail a motorcycle. It is a daunting task, so be patient and follow the instructions thoroughly, ensuring that you end up with a finished bike. A motorcycle’s detail should be such that there are no spots, residues, or dirt particles over the bike. Plus, avoid any cleaning mistakes so that the motorbike’s paint is left intact without any after-effects of detailing. I hope this guide helps you in effectively performing the detailing of the motorcycle.