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How to Clean a Bicycle

Learn how to clean your bike from Silk Road Cycles' Brendon Nicholas in this Howcast bicycle repair and maintenance video.


All right. Now we're going to talk about cleaning your bicycle. This is
really important because it makes your parts last longer. Also, so you
don't get a lot of dirt all over you. Also, so you don't bring in dirt to
your house. Basically it just makes your bike, the parts on it last longer.

What you're going to need is you're going to need a bunch of clean rags. It
could be T-shirts or whatever you have lying around usually like cotton. It
soaks up the water.

Also, it's nice to have something like a mulch-degreaser. It takes off
grease really easily. Make sure you're using this outside or in a well-
ventilated area. Most of these smell pretty bad. This one is eco-friendly
so you can wash it down the drain, so they say.

We also use here just Simple Green. Plain old Simple Green works really
well for the frame and for cleaning the wheels. Even sometimes cleaning the
chain if it's not too dirty. Because it's very, very mild on your skin.
Also, really mild on the bicycle. You have to make sure you're not using
really harsh chemicals because this bike is aluminum but the paint could
deteriorate if you're using really harsh chemicals.

Basically what you're going to do is you're going to start from head to
toe. Spray some Simple Green on your bike or you're going to spray it on
the actual rag. Then you're just going to wipe down your bike. Basically
getting all the little parts all around. Making sure your frame is nice and

You can take the wheels off. Clean the wheels. Making sure you're getting
each spoke. Getting the hubs. Probably the most important part of the bike
that you want to keep clean are the rim surfaces. So you make sure that you
brake fast and easily.

Also, your drive train. The drive train here, basically, so it works
properly. Also, so it doesn't wear out too fast. Basically what you're
going to do is you can take some degreaser put it on your rag. Run the
chain through. Or if you have a quick link chain or if you have a chain
tool you can take off your chain and have it soak in the degreaser in a
little container. Just be careful with it because it is pretty smelly and
not too good for your skin.

Another thing you can also do is when you take off the wheels you can set
your wheel down on your bench table. You can take the rag with your
degreaser on the rag and basically put it on each cog. Pushing it up into
the gears. Just spin as if it would if it was coasting. Just going back and
forth. Then do each one individually. Not only are you getting the actual
outside of the teeth here but you're also getting inside. All the grit and
grime that gets inside of there. That helps a lot because then your drive
train just lasts a lot longer.

That's basically how you're going to clean your bicycle. Make sure you do
that often. Especially during winter months because that salt really
corrodes every single part of your bicycle. Especially the drive train and
costs you lots and lots of money.

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