There are many ways to keep you pride and joy…or for that matter your winter hack, protected during the winter months. I’m not talking about stopping thieving scrotes from stealing your bike, but from the attack of road salts or whatever chemicals the road agencies are using these days to stop them from freezing.
Now, the easiest and cheapest way is to simply wash your bike on a regualr basis. Yes, just the bucket of soapy water and an old t-shirt will work wonders in keeping your bike contaminate free and will stop it rusting. However, how many of you will diligently wash your bike after each ride or at least once a week? I wager not many…and I include myself in this demographic too.
Some manufacturers even stipulate in the owners manual that you really should wash your bike on a regular basis. I think in the Harley Davidson Owners manual there is something written to that effect and it goes into great detail how to take care of your bike and wash it regularly.
I have known many Harley riders who have complained about their bikes getting rusty and the build quality just wasn’t there or that they were inferior to other brands in terms of resistance to corrosion, however I wonder how many of those owners really washed their bikes on a regular basis as is recommended by the manufacturer?
Indeed I have known many other Harley riders who have never had a problem with rust, even on the damp UK roads and one of the reasons is that they wash their bike regularly and pamper it somewhat!
Now for other riders, this amount of attention is actually using up valuable riding time so invariably the cleaning becomes irregular and infrequent…especially in the winter months. I mean who really wants to stand outside washing a bike when it’s freezing or it’s peeing down with rain?
However there are alternatives that do make life a lot easier. My last bike I bought, I actually paid a little extra and had a ceramic coating treatment all over the bike which is supposed to be bullet proof for a t least three years and will act as a barrier to moisture and contaminants and so will protect your bike passively without you needing to worry about washing your bike every five minutes.
However during the winter I also always apply a moisture repellent spray. Now there are lots of alternatives on the market and I’m sure each one is as good as the other, however I have only ever used two brands which I can vouch for. One is made by Muc Off and the other is ACF-50.
I always pressure wash my bike after a muddy ride on the dirt trails and occasionally it will get a soapy wash too. I have even been known to get the furniture polish out and give it a once over too…but don’t tell anyone as my street cred will be shot!
Now coming into the winter period, and this is when I start thinking about giving my bike a good spray all over the frame, engine, wheels etc. In fact pretty much everywhere just being careful to avoid getting spray on the brake discs. But even if I do then a simply clean off with a damp rag and I’m good to go.
I know I’ve had the ceramic protection done but I still add this little extra layer too for piece of mind. Initially it looks all shiny and new after application but you’ll soon notice that everything sticks to it as you ride. The bike can look like a bit of a mess, however beneath it all the spray is doing its job well.
I cannot recommend this more to any rider and it will help to protect your bike right the way through until spring. If you do wash your bike in the meantime, then simply let it drip dry then reapply the moisture repellent and you’re good to go again.
Of course there are many brands to choose from which are equally as good but below is a link to the one I use if any of you are interested. Get spraying and happy winter riding.