How to Clean Dirt Bike Air Filter

How often do you clean the dirt bike air filter? If it is not on your list of things to do, then we highly recommend that you get into the habit. The dirt bike air filter does an important job and if it is not cleaned regularly, this could lead to a decrease in performance and even damage the engine. In this guide, we will show you how to clean dirt bike air filter properly with some tips for maintenance.

How to Clean Dirt Bike Air Filter

Why It’s Important To Clean Your Dirt Bike Filter Regularly

  1. Dust gets deposited overtime during normal riding conditions, which can damage the properties of an otherwise good quality oiled foam media because dirt clogs pores and restricts airflow passage rates while increasing turbulence inside motorized vehicle intakes. The effect might not be seen for a few weeks but can eventually lead to severe performance issues.
  2. A dirty air filter will also restrict airflow, which may result in lower power and engine speed, loss of acceleration, or worse yet, engine failure at high RPMs.
  3. Dirt bike filters also protect your motor from ingesting insects like flies and bugs that could otherwise damage internal components. Imagine what would happen if one of those landed on the inside of an intake valve!

Things You’ll Need

  • Air filter cleaner
  • Spray Cleaner
  • Cotton swabs
  • Paper towel or rag
Things You'll Need

Steps To Follow: How to Clean Dirt Bike Air Filter

Step One: Choose Your Material

First, you need to decide what material you want for the air filter. It is best to have two so if one gets dirty during cleaning, the other will be clean and ready for use. Cotton swabs are a good choice because they can be cut shorter if they are too long and will not leave behind any fibers.

Step Two: Prepare the Filter

In order to clean your dirt bike air filter, you need to prepare it. Fill a bucket or sink with hot water and add in some cleaner according to the manufacturer’s instructions for use on filters. Dip one end of each swab into this mixture, then squeeze out the excess liquid so it is damp but not dripping wet.

Clean Your Dirt Bike Air Filter

You can also place a paper towel over both ends of the cotton swabs which will make them last longer when being used because there is less surface area where dirt can collect. Place all four corners near an edge like at a table so that dirty cotton does not touch anything else until after cleaning has been done.

Step Three: Cleaning the Filter

The first step of cleaning your dirt bike air filter is to get it, and then swab up all the dirty parts. Dip one end into a bucket or sink full of hot water with cleaner mixed in. Gently squeeze out excess liquid so that there is no dripping, but damp enough to do its job properly.

Use this part on each side and corner thoroughly until you see only clean cotton coming off onto the paper towel at the bottom. Once this end is clean, dip the other side of your swab into a bucket or sink with fresh water to rinse off all dirt and soap residue. Repeat until no more dirt comes up on the paper towel at the bottom.

Step Four: Drying Your Filter

The last step in cleaning your filter is drying it thoroughly but gently. Allowing it to air dry naturally will work best because any force applied could cause areas that were not fully cleaned.

Once wetted tip-to-tip with soapy water and rubbed well across each section separately, use a large towel to remove excess moisture from its surface while holding on tight enough such that you can feel how moist the material still is (squeezing too hard might tear any small holes or rips in the filter). Repeat the action as many times as necessary to remove all moisture.

Some Tips for Maintaining Your Dirt Bike Filter:

Tip-1: Keep the air filter clean and replace it regularly. 

Tip-2:  Try to store your filter in a cool, dry place.

Tip-3:  Keep it out of direct sunlight and away from heat sources.

Tip-4:  Use an air compressor to blow any excess dirt off regularly before storing the filter on its side for long periods of time or flipping over (in this position, keep pressure applied down onto the surface).

Tip-5:  Reapply fuel system cleaner as necessary (this will help prevent corrosion).

Tip-6: Inspect all other parts related to airflows, such as carburetor jets and hoses for wear and tear at least every six months so they can be replaced if need be before you experience diminished performance due to restricted flow rates.

Tip-7: To measure how dirty a motorcycle’s air filter is, take a look at its color. Remember to change filters every six months if you’re not doing so already!

Change Filters Every Six Month

Frequently Asked Question

What Can I Use to Clean My Air Filter?

A: You can use a clean rag specifically made for motorcycle air filters and some water mixed with soap. Wet the cloth in warm water, wring it out so that it is not dripping wet but damp enough to be able to remove dirt from the filter surface without damaging it. Mix dishwashing liquid into this solution and soak the rag with it.

Next, rub the cloth over the dirty filter surface and scrub out dirt and debris until you feel like there is no more left on it. Rinse off any excess soap from the air filter with a hose or bucket of water to remove all traces of soap (you want to avoid using solvents). Allow your bike to air dry completely before riding.

How Often Should You Clean Your Air Filter?

When you are done using your bike for the day, clean its filter thoroughly with water and soap so that it is ready to go in the morning. Air filters only have a tendency to clog up when they build up too much dirt from the inside of the air intake and it needs to be cleaned out.

How Do I Know When To Clean My Air Filter?

A: Your bike should start running more slowly, lose power, or stop altogether if you don’t clean your filter regularly. You can also tell when it’s time by looking at your air filter. If it has a lot of dirt on the outside, the chances are that it is also dirty inside and needs to be cleaned.


The dirt bike air filter is a key component of your engine and well-being. It’s important to keep the filter clean for a number of reasons, including keeping debris out of your engine as well as preventing clogs in the carburetor or fuel system.

Here in this guide, You will find some great tips on how to clean dirt bike air filters like cleaning, maintaining, and following those steps, you can perform basic repairs yourself. We hope you found this article helpful! If so, please share it with your dirt bike riding friends.

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Darren Matlock

Darren Matlock

Hi, I'm Darren. I love dirt bikes and everything about the off-road lifestyle. I'm passionate about motorbikes, cars, racing sports and going on adventures. If you're like me and enjoy extreme sports, you've come to the right place! I like to write articles about dirt bikes to help beginners get started. Whether you're interested in buying a dirt bike, ATV, motorcycle or want to ride for hobby, I hope my articles will inspire you to learn more about how this machine can be used to ride.

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