Maintenance Tips for Your Motorcycle Gear

Even the best motorcycle gear has a limited lifespan. Providing the appropriate maintenance can help owners get the most from their investment. Cleaning and preserving leather and textile clothing can mean the difference in buying a replacement now or later.

Caring for Leather

To some bikers, leather is the only fabric to buy to ride their motorcycle in any weather. Leather does offer exceptional abrasion resistance and it also looks great and feels comfortable. It also lasts a lot longer than textile clothing if it is properly maintained.

It might seem like stiff, heavy leather is the best material for protecting the rider but the goal for keeping it at its best is to clean and condition it to keep it soft. Keeping it too dry will result in its becoming brittle and cracked while too much moisture will get it water-logged and less protective.

For best results, only use cleaners made specifically for leather. Never use abrasive cleaners or brushes that can cause damage to the surface. Applying a little pressure with a soft brush or sponge in a circular motion should be adequate to remove any dirt. Double check areas where dirt might build up such as along seam lines and vents.

Once the leather has dried completely, apply conditioner liberally using a soft cloth. Focus on any areas where there appears to be the beginning of damage or wear and areas with a lot of dirt. Wait until the conditioner has dried to wipe it off with a soft cloth and buff to a soft, supple finish.

If leather is stored during the hotter months, don’t seal in plastic. The leather fabric needs to breathe and sealing it up can cause it to peel or mold.

Caring for Textiles

The good news for bikers is that the modern textile gear they purchased is super easy to care for. Most can be placed in the washer with a mild liquid detergent to clean. However, most manufacturers recommend leaving out the fabric softener to prevent interfering with the water-resistant properties. To dry, either put in the dry or let hang.

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