How To Wash Motorcycle Jacket: Tips and Tricks

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If you are a motorcycle enthusiast, you know just how crucial it is to keep your gear in pristine condition. Your motorcycle jacket is no exception, whether it’s to prolong its lifespan or just so you always look cool and fashionable and not like a homeless person with a rancid smell who found the jacket near a dumpster and decided to put it on.

This post is your go-to guide for cleaning and preserving your motorcycle jacket. We’ll provide you with all the information you need to know, from choosing the best materials to using effective methods that keep your garment looking as good as new. Get ready; we’re about to discuss how you can make sure that your riding gear stays in peak condition. So, let’s get started!

How To Tell If Your Jacket Needs Cleaning

You should already know… don’t be disgusting, but if you don’t or have been living a particularly germaphobe lifestyle recently, there are some tell-tale signs that your jacket needs a good wash. The first and most obvious sign is general dirtiness. If your jacket has become dingy or grimy after a long ride, it’s definitely time for a cleaning.

Another sign that your jacket needs some TLC is if it has started looking a bit faded. If you want to keep that new-looking shine, then regular cleaning and maintenance are essential. Finally, if you notice a bad odor emanating from your jacket, it’s time to break out the detergent!

How To Wash Motorcycle Jeans

When it comes to washing motorcycle jeans, it’s important to understand that there are multiple different types of jackets and that each one requires a different cleaning approach.

Leather jackets: Leather is an extremely durable material; however, it is also very sensitive. Therefore, when cleaning a leather motorcycle jacket, it’s important to use gentle products and techniques to ensure that the leather does not crack or tear.

Textile jackets: Synthetic jackets are much easier to clean than leather, as they are much less delicate and can be washed with a standard laundry detergent.

Mesh jackets: Mesh motorcycle jackets are typically waterproof, so they can be washed with a mild detergent in your washing machine.

Cleaning Tips

Regardless of the type of jacket you have, here are some tips to keep in mind when cleaning it: 

– Always check the care label on the jacket for specific instructions about how to clean and care for the garment 

– Remove and empty all pockets before washing

– Never put your jacket in the dryer, as this can cause shrinkage or other damage 

– Avoid using bleach when cleaning a jacket, as it could weaken and damage the fabric 

– If you are spot-cleaning a jacket, use a damp cloth with a light detergent to remove any dirt or grease spots 

– For leather jackets, use a leather cleaner and conditioner to remove dirt build-up and prevent cracking 

– Make sure your jacket is completely dry before storing it away.

Steps For Washing Motorcycle Jacket

Now we will go into detailed instructions for each type of motorcycle jacket. 

Leather jackets: 

1. Remove any dirt or debris from the jacket by using a wet cloth soaked in leather cleaner. 

2. Allow the jacket to air dry completely before applying the leather conditioner and buffing it with a soft cloth. 

3. Store the jacket in a cool, dry place. 

Textile jackets: 

1. Place the jacket in a washing machine set to a gentle cycle and use a mild detergent. 

2. Hang the jacket up to dry, making sure not to twist or wring it out as this could cause damage. 

3. Iron on low heat if necessary and store away in a cool, dry place.

Mesh jackets: 

1. Put the jacket into a washing machine set to cold water and use a mild detergent. 

2. Hang up the jacket to air dry, making sure not to twist or wring it out as this could cause damage. 

3. Store away in a cool, dry place.

Note: You will need to remove any liner, inserts, armor, or other protective elements before washing your jacket.

What Detergents Should You Use

To keep your motorcycle jacket looking its best for years to come, be sure to use a detergent specifically designed for delicate or technical fabrics. As regular laundry detergents can be too abrasive, opt for milder varieties that are free of bleach, fabric softeners, and enzymes, all of which can damage the material and change its color. 

Additionally, pay attention to any labels or care instructions on the item itself as some materials may require special cleaning conditions; when in doubt, always choose gentle products. With this simple practice, you will ensure your jacket stays bright & beautiful no matter how many miles it travels with you.

Drying your Motorcycle Jacket

After washing your jacket, make sure to treat it with respect and dry it in an appropriate manner. Exposing your jacket directly to sunlight or using a clothes dryer is not the recommended route, as these methods can damage the textile material and the protective features of your jacket, and that’s the last thing we want. Riding gear is expensive! 

Instead, hang your jacket in a well-ventilated area and let it air dry naturally. Avoid hanging it on sharp edges or in direct sunlight, and ensure that it is completely dry before storing it away. Remember to apply leather conditioner if you have a leather jacket and use a lint roller to keep it looking its best. In some cases, the water-repellant coating might prove useful. 

Don’t forget to put all the liner, inserts, armor, or other protective elements back on your jacket after washing and drying or it completely defeats the purpose, and you’ll end up with a windbreaker, not riding gear. 

Tips On Washing Motorcycle Jacket

Check the jacket’s care label for specific instructions. Some jackets require professional cleaning, while others may be washable. The signs and symbols on the label will tell you how to proceed. If you can’t understand the symbols, first check online or ask a professional cleaner. 

Avoid contact with sharp objects while washing and drying your jacket, as they can cause pilling, snagging, and tears on the fabric. For leather jackets, use high-quality leather cleaners rather than regular soap and water to ensure that the material is not damaged by harsh chemicals. Finally, when in doubt, always go for the gentler option. 


What are some common mistakes when washing a motorcycle jacket?

It is important to follow the instructions on the label and not use strong cleaning products, bleach, or fabric softeners. Additionally, avoid twisting or wringing out your jacket, and try not to expose it to direct sunlight or high temperatures while drying. 

Do I need to remove the armor from my jacket before washing it?

Yes, it is important to remove any liner, armor, or other protective elements before washing your jacket. This will ensure that the material is not damaged while in the machine and that they stay securely attached afterward. 

Can I use a hair dryer to speed up drying time? 

No, using a hair dryer on your jacket can damage the material and change its color. Instead, hang your jacket in a well-ventilated area and let it air dry naturally. Avoid hanging it on sharp edges or in direct sunlight, and ensure that it is completely dry before storing it away.


Your motorcycle jacket is your armor against the elements and should be treated with care, so following the steps and tips mentioned should help you effectively wash your jacket and keep it clean and odor-free while preserving its unique features and protective qualities. Remember to always read the care label before washing and avoid using harsh chemicals or machines that can damage your jacket. 

Whether you’re on a casual ride or full-throttle adventure, make sure you take good care of your gear so that it can take care of you. We hope this guide helps you keep your motorcycle gear in tip-top shape. So get out there and enjoy the open road with confidence that your clothing will stay looking great. Happy riding! 🤘🏻👊🏼

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