eMTB's are rugged bikes designed for off-road action in all weathers, but to keep your eBike in top condition here are a few tips on how to clean it properly.
When we designed and developed the Patrol E-Six and Patrol E-Zero eMTBs we made sure that both bikes could handle the rough and tumble of the mountain biking world no matter what nature can throw at them.
Each bike is carefully built using high-quality parts from Shimano, Fox, Sun Ringle and SDG, but to ensure a long life a careful cleaning and maintenance regime should be followed.
The Dos and Dont's of cleaning your eMTB
Just like a standard mountain bike, there are certain methods of cleaning that are not suitable for eBikes. Such as;
Don't use a pressure washer.
- We know that it can be tempting to use a pressure washer to clean your bike, but we do not recommend using a high-pressure washer on motors, electronics, bearings or suspension seals. Although every component on your Patrol eBike is fully waterproof, pressures washers are still able to force water into components and electronics which will damage them.
- There are certain types of pressure washer that are designed specifically for bicycle use and these should be safe to use on your Patrol eMTB, but we DO NOT recommend the use of a powerful, household pressure washer.
Do not use solvents.
- Ensuring your bike is clean after every ride should mean that you have very little cleaning to do unless of course, it is winter or the trails are extremely wet. With this in mind, your bike should never become so covered in dirty oil or grease that a solvent-based cleaner is needed. Solvent-based cleaners can damage seals on hubs, suspension, electronics and motors. Instead, we recommend using a bicycle-specific cleaner or shampoo.
Do not use aerosol-based oils.
- Common household aerosol-based oils are great for releasing seized or rusty bolts but they are not suitable for effectively lubricating the components on a mountain bike or eMTB. Aerosol based oils can be washed off easily in rain, and can also contaminate areas of the bike that should never see oil, such as the disc brakes and pads.
What should I use to clean my eMTB?
Ok, so now that you know what you shouldn't be doing, here are a few ways you should be cleaning your eMTB.
Use a hosepipe
- That's correct! A garden hose pipe with a trigger attachment should provide enough power to knock off mud and dirt, but won't be overly powerful that it can damage seals and electronics.
Use a bicycle-specific pressure washer
- If you have a bicycle-specific pressure washer then you can also use this, but still pay close attention to areas around electronics, seals and suspension.
Use a bicycle-specific cleaner or shampoo
- There are many types of bicycle cleaner on the market. We find that the cleaners that offer the most foam and suds also offer the best cleaning performance.
Use a soft brush or sponge
- A soft brush is ideal for getting the cleaner activated and rubbed into every corner of your bike. Ensure that it is a soft brush or it may scratch the finish of your bike. Another option is to use a sponge.
Use a bike spray to disperse water
- After cleaning your bike use a bike spray to help disperse the water. DO NOT spray it directly on your bike as it may contaminate your disc brakes, instead spray on to a cloth then wipe your bike, avoiding the discs and brake pads.
Lubricate your chain and drivetrain after cleaning.
- There are many types of oils on the market and it can depend on the conditions you ride on which oil you should use. Dry lube is best for dry conditions and is less likely to attract dust. A wet lube is better for wet conditions, and won't wash off easily, however it will get clogged with dust easier. Patrol recommends a good quality wax-based oil, as these oils can be used all year round and in all conditions.
How to clean my eMTB?
Now we know what we can and cannot do when cleaning our eMTB, here are the steps that we recommend when cleaning your bike.
- Step 1. Hose your bike to remove the majority of dirt from your bike. Make sure you clean behind the fork, under the downtube and between suspension links.
- Step 2. With most of the dirt hosed off, spray your bike with a high-quality bicycle cleaner. Make sure you cover the bike on both sides.
- Step 3. With your soft brush rub the cleaner over the bike making sure the cleaner penetrates the dirt. If you are cleaning your bike on a hot day, try do clean it in shade to prevent the cleaner drying.
- Step 4. Hose off the dirt and cleaner. If your bike is still dirty ensure your brush is clean and follows steps 2 and 3 again.
- Step 5. Use a soft cloth to apply bike spray to your frame. This will disperse water and also help prevent dirt sticking on your next ride.
- Step 6. Lubricate your drivetrain and chain. Make sure you cycle the chain through each gear. Once lubed, remove any excess oil with a rag.
- Step 7. Admire your clean bike and post a photo of it on Instagram #patrolingtheworld