How To: Wash Your Motocross Gear

How-To Guides & Tutorials  |  9 October 2017

How To: Wash Your Motocross Gear main image

Given that a fresh motocross gear set is typically an investment you'd like to last, it's important to know the ins and outs of looking after your kit. Since different brands and ranges of gear are made of a few different materials, particularly high-end pants with leather on the insides of the knees, you need to be very careful with what you use to clean them or you could damage the gear and shorten its lifespan. 

Here at MXstore, we've taken the time to put together a little how-to of everything you need to know when it comes to taking care of your moto gear.

Generally, you need to follow the instructions on the care label which is attached to each individual product. If you cannot find the label here are some basic guidelines to follow to avoid damaging your gear in the wash:

- Do not use oxygenated detergents such as napisan, stain remover, spot clean, bleach or soaking agents. Washing your gear using any of these methods may cause the colour to run and/ or the leather panels to disintegrate. Manufacturers' warranty does not cover damage caused by not following care instructions listed here or on the instructions printed on the tags of the garments.

- Wash gear immediately after riding, do not leave it in your gear bag for a week.

- Turn your gear inside out.

- Wash by hand using mild detergent or machine wash on a gentle cycle with cold water and mild detergent.

- Hang out to dry in a ventilated area out of the sun.

- Do not wash gear with any item which has velcro as it can damage jerseys.

- Do not tumble dry.

- Do not iron.

- Do not use a pressure washer on any of your gear.

Explaining the DO NOTS of washing your motocross gear:
- Do not bleach – This is a harsh way of cleaning anything and the chemical in bleach will strip the colour from the fabric and destroy the leather in the knees.
- Do not use oxygenated detergent – This type of detergent will absorb all of the oils from the leather in the knees of your dirt bike pants. This will cause the leather to dry up and become stiff. This will eventually cause them to crack and disintegrate completely.
- Do not tumble dry – Your gear gets knocked around enough on the bike, you don’t want to beat it up any more than you have to!
- Do not iron – If you iron your motocross gear you will most likely melt it. Especially your motocross jersey!
- Do not use a pressure washer on any of your gear – Pressure washers will destroy your gear, the force will blow the oils out of the leather knees on the pants. If you don’t know how this could be possible, think about the last time you accidentally shot yourself in the foot with the pressure washer - it would've felt like somebody had used a cheese grater on you. Leather is just skin… but from a cow, so be gentle!
- Do not leave your dirty motocross gear in your gear bag for a week – If you leave mud on anything for long enough it will stain and sweat destroys the material. If you touch an old pair of footy socks you will notice it feels more like builders sandpaper. It’s your choice but nobody wants to be riding around in stained sandpaper gear!

How to wash muddy motocross gear:
If you have been riding in the mud and your gear is heavily soiled, start by hosing off as much dirt as possible under low pressure. Remove dirt stains and smudges with a soft brush, mild soap and rinse with cold water. The key is getting the bulk of the mud off the gear, making the next stage of the process a lot easier. Machine wash on gentle in cold water using a mild non-oxygenated detergent.

How to dry your motocross gear after washing:
Hang your gear up to let it drip or air dry. Do not use a machine dryer, sunlight, hair dryers or any type of heat during the drying process. The limited warranty is void if pants are placed into the dryer. Always ensure your gear is sufficiently dry before heading out on the bike again - for those of you riding frequently, it's not a bad idea to have a backup set of gear ready to go.

How to care for the leather on your motocross pants:
It's critical to care for the leather on the inner knees of your dirt bike pants properly. When leather is almost dry after cleaning, apply a leather conditioner to keep it flexible. When leather has completely dried, apply an additional coat of conditioner. This should be done occasionally to replenish the suppleness and ensure durability.

How to correctly store your motocross gear after washing:
Avoid unnecessary exposure to sunlight and UV rays particularly when storing your pants. Always store pants in a dark, well-ventilated area. Pants are best hung on a wide padded hanger. Do not wrap the pants in plastic or other non-porous materials as the leather portions of the pants need to breathe to avoid damage from mould.

Thinking it's time for a new set of Motocross Gear? Checkout the range at MXstore:

Comments (5)


This is my first time i visit here. I found so many interesting stuff in your blog especially its discussion. From the tons of comments on your articles, I guess I am not the only one having all the enjoyment here keep up the good work

PETER12 PETER12 on 10 May 2020
Thanks Peter, we're glad you love it! If you don't find the answers you need, please feel free to reach out to our Customer Service team too!
MXstore Response

Thank goodness for this article!!

Its been a bit hit and miss and trying to get the MX gear completely clean can be a nightmare!! Any ideas for the mud/dirt stains that wont come out???

Chrissy Walsh on 29 January 2020
Hi Chrissy, it sure can be really hard to remove mud stains! You may have already tried this, but we would say: - Scrape/remove as much mud as possible, you may even find that letting the mud just dry will make it easier to remove the excess (if you try to rub mud while it's wet it will work deeper into the material) - Rub the mild detergent into the stain, sometimes even just a dishwashing liquid can do the job - Let it sit for about 15 minutes (but we wouldn't soak the whole thing, just the stained spot) - Using a soft brush (like a toothbrush) and a little bit of water, scrub both sides of the material to work the detergent in and loosen the mud - Give a quick rinse to remove any excess mud - Wash as normal, you may need to repeat a couple of times for really stubborn spots! Hopefully this helps!
MXstore Response

Fresh Fox 360.

Glad I found this article. Just forked out for Fox 360 fear set to replace a set of Thor Core. Loved the Thor but knee panels are totally shagged. I had blamed knee braces. I now blame my washing method. Thank you guys

Brendan Neilsen on 20 September 2018
Hi Brendan, we're stoked to hear you found the article informative! Hopefully this will help get the most out of your new gear set!
MXstore Response


Hi Can you recommend a detergent sold in Australia that I can use. I am struggling to find one that is mild non oxygenated detergent. Thanks Nic

17 August 2017
Hi Nic! I personally use either OMO or Surf laundry detergent and I've never had a set of gear fall apart on me! I always just read the ingredients and anything which has "Oxy" in the title I stay away from.
MXstore Response

Jenna Hunter

It never occurred to me to wash my son's gear with a hose to get as much dirt of as possible! I always just used to put it in a bucket of water, which took forever! His gear is really worn and torn, we might just end up buying new gear!

13 December 2016

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