How to Clean an ATV

How to properly clean the ATV

If you clean your atv properly you are essentially expanding its lifespan.


  • cloths and/or silencer plug
  • high pressure washer or bucket and sponge
  • (warm) water
  • soapy solution
  • siliconspray
  • soft cleaning cloths


  • Close off any holes: Before hosing off the ATV, close off the exhaust to prevent water from getting into the engine. You can close off the exhaust with some ducktape, put a cloth into the back of the exhaust, or use a 'silencer plug'. Also close off the air box as well with a large cloth to prevent water from filtering through to the carburator.
  • Let the engine cool: Before hosing off the ATV, make sure the engine is cooled off. Never cool off your engine by spraying water on it! If you do so, you risk pulling the engine. Don't force metal to contract faster then it naturally does. The same applies before you take your ATV for a ride. Don't take off immediatly after you've started the engine. Give it some time to naturally warm up first. In general, by giving your engine the time to warm up and cool off you are in essence expanding its lifespan.
  • Wash off the dirt: To best way to hose off the ATV is by making use of a high-presure cleaner, preferably connected to a warm water tap. Make sure, if you buy a high-presure cleaner, it has a minimal pressure of 60 bar. More presure isn't actually necessary, since you would risk hosing off any decals and graphics. If you do have more pressure then 60 bar available, cleaning will go faster, but watch out for any decals. Ofcourse you can also finish the job using a simple gardenhose or bucket filled with water and soap. No problem.
    TIP: After you've hosed off the ATV, close off the fueltap, put the ATV frontside up (resting on its grabbar) and have another go at it. You'll be amazed how much dirt you did not wash off yet. Optionally, using an aircompressor, you can blow any dirt out of little holes, switches and other components.
  • YFZ 450 ATV frontside up
  • Soap it in: There are 2 ways you can soap in your ATV;
    - using a high compression cleaner that has a function to soap in,
    - or using a plant-spray with 90% water and 10% soap
    Either way, let the soap set for 5 minutes before you hose it off. Afterwards, start your engine and let it run for a minute or 2 to ensure your engine will defenately start up next time you go for a ride.
  • Dry it off: Using a clean cloth, dry your ATV. If you prefer to dry it off by taking it for a ride, that's fine. Just make sure you test the brakes first, because your brakediscs can still be wet and not function adequately.
  • Plastic care: When your ATV is dry and dustfree, you can use 'siliconspray'to give your plastics a new look shine. Siliconspray also applies a layer that prevents dirt sticking on too tight; i.e. next time you wash off your ATV, dirt will come off as easier. Siliconspray also protects agains scratches and will make the plastics shine again. Spray on and slightly rub in with a clean soft cloth. (plastics should be dry and dustfree) No need to over-spray though; with a cloth your can easily spread it out evenly.


  1. Never use simonise products on plastics. Plastics come standard with a shiny layer. If you use simonise producs, they will most defenatly scour this layer off.
  2. Don't use WD40 either, because it will make it easier for dust to stick on. It will also give your plastics a flat look.
  3. Prevent spraying on the grips or they will loose their main function; providing a good grip.
  4. If you have an o-ring chain, avoid washing it off with a high compression cleaner. Check out the article on cleaning an o-ring drive chain.

Take care... !

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