A motorcycle windshield is made out of a material called polycarbonate plastic. This plastic is used in a lot of different applications, such as helmet visors, boat windows, camper windows, and even body panels for remote controlled cars. It is a very tough plastic that does not break easily. It makes a great solution for a motorcycle windshield, but it does have some problems.
A Cloudy Film
Trying to see behind something that has a fog like appearance or is clouded over is quite difficult. Driving a motorcycle with the windshield fogged up can lead to disastrous results. Some people will try some basic cleaning of the motorcycle windshield and then throw it away when it does not become clean. However, by adhering to few simple tips, you can defog the motorcycle windshield and save yourself the money you would spend on a new one.
Non-Abrasive Cleaners Only
The polycarbonate plastic that the windshield is made out of is quite strong. However, that does not mean that small abrasives can not scratch the surface. When cleaning the fog off the motorcycle windshield, you will want to use mild cleaners that will not break down the surface of the plastic. Stay away from cleaners that include any type of isopropyl alcohol and ammonia.
Wash With Water First
Before attempting to use any type of cleaner on the motorcycle windshield, you should wash it down with some warm water and soap first. Never try to wipe the dust off of it with your bare hand. This will cause small pieces of dust, sand, and other grit to rub against the plastic and cause small scratches. These scratches will then grow as time goes on and weaken the integrity of the windshield. It could then break easily.
Use Cotton Clothes
With the motorcycle windshield, you want to almost treat it as if it is made out of egg shells. Cotton clothes will glide gently over the surface of the polycarbonate plastic. As you rub the surface of the motorcycle windshield, you should only use a side to side motion as opposed to a circular one. This will help you to move the dirt away from the windshield by depositing it off of the edge, as opposed to working the dirt into the windshield with a circular motion. Do not use any type of paper towel in place of the cotton rags.
Special Cleaners Only
Many manufacturers have created specially formulated cleaners that will work on the fogging problem of motorcycle windshields. These cleaners, like Sumner Laboratories' 210 cleaner, also protect and seal the windshield to prevent future fogging problems. The use of cleaners like Windex will only cause problems with fogging, as it does not seal it.
Use Lots of Water
Whenever you are cleaning your motorcycle windshield, you should always use a lot of water to rinse it off. After each step, from the initial rinse, to using a cleaner, to wiping it down, you should make sure that there is a lot of water involved. If the surface of the windshield has a chance to dry off, it can easily receive scratches due to some pieces of dust or dirt.