Bike Cleaning Techniques and Tips

Bike Cleaning Techniques and Tips

After a long ride, it may be tempting to chuck your bike aside until the next ride; we assure you that a clean bike is more efficient and enjoyable. Without regular cleaning, components begin to corrode over time, that’s when you’ll start to hear squeaky noises while riding. Here’s how to clean your bike in 4 steps!

Bike Frame

Things you need: bucket of soapy water, soft sponge, clean dry rags

With the bucket of soapy water and your soft sponge, gently rinse and scrub off the debris. For those with disc brakes, try to avoid soap residue from the rotors and brake pads.

After rinsing off the soapy water with clean water, gently dry off the bike with your clean dry rags.      

Brake Pads and Rotors

Things you need: lint-free cloth (caliper brake), isopropyl alcohol (disc brake)

To ensure an efficient and silent braking power, clean brakes are essential. A dirty brake pad will wear off your rim quickly!

For caliper brake users, remove the brake pads and rub off any brake dust trapped on it with a lint-free cloth. Make sure there is no debris stuck inside the brake pads! For disc brake users, gently wipe the rotors with isopropyl alcohol. Many have found that rubbing alcohol does a great job in removing grime yet leave no residue.


Things you need: degreaser, brush (old toothbrush works too!), lubricant, chain cleaner

If your chain doesn’t have too much grime, simply apply the degreaser on it and clean the chain with a brush. After, follow up with cleaning the chain with an appropriate chain cleaner. However, if your chain still looks dirty, you may want to use a chain-cleaning device by filling it with a degreaser, snap on the chain and rotate the pedal.

Remember not to use alkali or acid based solvents, such as rust cleaners as these solvents might cause the chain to break and cause serious injury.

After the degreaser has dried, apply drops of lube onto the chain (remember to get them on each link).


Credit: Cycling Tips

Things you need: degreaser, brush (or old toothbrush), neutral detergent, lint-free cloth

Spray the chainrings and derailleurs with the degreaser then scrub them with a brush. The debris should shed off relatively easily.  Then, proceed to wash the degreaser off with neutral detergent before rinsing it off with water. Repeat the same process with the cassette.

Remember to always use a lint free cloth to wipe off any excess lube from the drivetrain to prevent any lint from getting stuck on the components. For maximum performance, we recommend Shimano lubricants and maintenance products.

Check out our own in-house bike cleaning video!

Published by: Vivien Sim, 10 Mar 2021