electrical contact cleaner


Technical information and Q&A applicable to all years and models of Goldwings
Post Reply
User avatar
winguyjo
Posts: 627
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:26 pm
Location: b.c. Canada
Motorcycle: wing 8 : 1982 gl1100 standard.

electrical contact cleaner

Post by winguyjo »



does it actually do anything for us ? seems to me it's more for (indoor) circuit boards and such that aren't exposed to the heavier oxidation that outdoor connectors endure. i went through a can a while back and it certainly doesn't produce any visible results. wondering if i should just invest in a points file or something like that ? i am thinking specifically of the small female spade connectors here; larger surfaces can, and should, be cleaned with sandpaper/file/steel wool/etc.

your thoughts ?


joecoolsuncle
Posts: 562
Joined: Sun Sep 26, 2021 6:10 am
Location: oxford, ar
Motorcycle: 1984 gl1200a

Re: electrical contact cleaner

Post by joecoolsuncle »

its good for blowing off the residue after cleaning the connectors with brush or whatever. it may even wash some green fuzzy stuff away also. but typically i use it to blast immediately after cleaning and before soldering.
User avatar
WingAdmin
Site Admin
Posts: 23754
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:16 pm
Location: Strongsville, OH
Motorcycle: 2000 GL1500 SE
1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
1989 PC800 (sold)
1998 XV250 Virago (sold)
2012 Suzuki Burgman 400 (wife's!)
2007 Aspen Sentry Trailer
Contact:

Re: electrical contact cleaner

Post by WingAdmin »

It depends. My everyday contact cleaner is CRC QD Electronic Cleaner, which will clean grime and dust off of contacts very well. If there is oxidation, it's not going to do much.

For oxidized connectors, you need something like CAIG Deoxit which chemically removes oxidation and sulfation from terminals. CAIG Deoxit is not cheap, but it works. There are special versions of it for gold contacts, silver contacts, and conductive plastic contacts.
Find This Item on Amazon:
User avatar
MikeB
Posts: 4001
Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2009 12:54 pm
Location: Tacoma, WA
Motorcycle: 1998 - GL1500 Aspencade
199K Miles
2017 - GL1800 Audio Comfort
36K Miles
Contact:

Re: electrical contact cleaner

Post by MikeB »

winguyjo wrote: Tue Mar 22, 2022 12:47 pm does it actually do anything for us ? seems to me it's more for (indoor) circuit boards and such that aren't exposed to the heavier oxidation that outdoor connectors endure. i went through a can a while back and it certainly doesn't produce any visible results. wondering if i should just invest in a points file or something like that ? i am thinking specifically of the small female spade connectors here; larger surfaces can, and should, be cleaned with sandpaper/file/steel wool/etc.

your thoughts ?
If you need to abrade the surface to clean it, I suggest something like this from Amazon:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B099X ... UTF8&psc=1

Steel wool is not really a great product to use on electrical connectors. Maybe a wet or dry paper such as Crocus cloth but these small retractable scrubbers work really well to remove oxidation and corrosion. And they get into the tightest places.
Find This Item on Amazon:
Attachments


MikeB
1998 - GL1500 w/195,500 miles ~ 2017 - GL1800 w/32,000 miles
USAF Avionics Communications Tech - 1968 - 1986 / Flight Engineer C-130E - C-141B - 1986 - 1992. Retired
Industrial Maintenance Tech - 1992 - 2014
Retired in Tacoma, WA
pyahoom
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2015 3:02 pm
Location: Columbus, OH
Motorcycle: GL1800A 2004

Re: electrical contact cleaner

Post by pyahoom »

The cruise control ON/OFF switch on my 2004 GL1800 was refusing to stay ON when I bought the bike used 8 years ago. For the last several years I have had a flat piece of plastic jammed into the side of the button to keep it in so that it was ON all of the time. Last week I pulled the plastic out with a pair of needle nose pliers and sprayed electronic contact cleaner into as many crevices as I could. I now have a working switch.
Gnarly
Posts: 29
Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2020 2:14 pm
Location: United States
Motorcycle: 1999 Honda Valkyrie Interstate
2006 Honda GL1800 / 2021 Roadsmith Trike

Re: electrical contact cleaner

Post by Gnarly »

WingAdmin wrote: Tue Mar 22, 2022 1:18 pm

.........For oxidized connectors, you need something like CAIG Deoxit which chemically removes oxidation and sulfation from terminals. CAIG Deoxit is not cheap, but it works. There are special versions of it for gold contacts, silver contacts, and conductive plastic contacts.
Agree!

Also a fan of the Deoxit Shield, after the Deoxit Contact Cleaner / Deoxidizer has a bit to dry.
It's recommended for Severe Environments.

Because most everything about a motorcycle, at one time or another, is gonna be exposed to some severe environments!

CAIG Deoxit ain't cheap, but IMO: worth it.
Find This Item on Amazon:
User avatar
WingAdmin
Site Admin
Posts: 23754
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:16 pm
Location: Strongsville, OH
Motorcycle: 2000 GL1500 SE
1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
1989 PC800 (sold)
1998 XV250 Virago (sold)
2012 Suzuki Burgman 400 (wife's!)
2007 Aspen Sentry Trailer
Contact:

Re: electrical contact cleaner

Post by WingAdmin »

Whatever you do, do NOT use WD-40, which is not a contact cleaner at all. It's intended to prevent oxidation by displacing water and leaves behind an oily coating. This sticky, oily coating attracts dust and grit like crazy, and your electrical contacts will soon no longer be working as a result.
jsmithrmga
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Feb 18, 2010 10:33 pm
Location: Rome, GA
Motorcycle: 2005 GL1800

Re: electrical contact cleaner

Post by jsmithrmga »

I don't have a recommendation for "best" contact cleaner, but I do have a testimonial. I had taken my bike apart to replace the air filter. When I put it back together, one of the buttons that lets me change the time on the clock wasn't working. I thought maybe a loose connector, so I dug back into it and checked; no issues, and no joy. I thought maybe the switch had gone bad. I decided to try contact cleaner, so I went down to Lowes and bought a can of CRC. After a good shot around the switch, it started working flawlessly. Score one for contact cleaner!
Dirtrack650
Posts: 53
Joined: Thu Jun 27, 2019 12:59 pm
Location: Washington State
Motorcycle: 1983 GL1100

Re: electrical contact cleaner

Post by Dirtrack650 »

I've been using WD-40 followed up with compressed air on all the bikes I've owned: dirt, street, adventure. Never had a problem, never let me down.

WD has a cleaner specifically for contacts.
Attachments




Post Reply