8 Tips On How To Clean An RC Car (And If You Should)

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Tips On How To Clean An RC Car


After a fun day using your RC car you might find that it gets a little (or a lot) dirty. We have decided to write a few tips on how to clean an RC car and if it is a good idea.

We have also included some tips that we have found useful when cleaning our RC cars.

What Is The Best Way To Clean Your RC Car?

Before even thinking about cleaning your car you need to do a couple of things.

Firstly, make sure you have disconnected all batteries and removed them from the cleaning area. Batteries and water don’t typically mix well, so to avoid any damage make sure to store them away safely.

To make the job a lot easier, remove the body or shell and store that to one side, we will wash that later. You should also remove the wheels, again these will get cleaned in due course.

Using a can of air or an air compressor set to low, start to blow over the car inside and out. Make sure to get into the smaller areas. For example, inside the shockers, behind the battery compartment, and around the ESC (electronic speed controller).

After getting rid of the loose dirt with the air you should now use a small brush, something like a toothbrush is ideal.

Start to brush on stubborn parts that didn’t get removed with the air. Use your brush and your pressured air to get rid of debris.

At this point, you should decide whether or not it is necessary to remove any electrical parts. If you decide to you will require a small crossed screwdriver and a pair of snipe-nosed pliers.

The more things you remove the easier it will be to get the whole car clean but keep in mind the order in which things go back together. Refer to your manufacturer’s handbook if you become confused about how to put your RC car back together.

RC Car shocks after being cleaned
Clean RC Car Shock Absorbers


Can I Clean MY RC Car With Water?

If you want to use water to clean your RC car you should take extra care around the electrical components that can be very delicate around moisture.

The best practice is to remove any parts that rely on electricity to work. This includes the ESC, servos, wiring, circuit boards, battery compartments, and lighting.

When you have just plastics and metals left you can then use water to clean your RC car. But, make sure not to use high pressure as that could cause damage to the components left inside.

After finishing with cleaning you should then thoroughly dry your RC car, making sure that all moisture is removed. Leave your RC car overnight before assembling the electronic components back together.

How Often Should You Clean Your RC Car?

This is dependent on how dirty the car is. For example, if you have just been using your car on asphalt on a hot, dry day then you won’t be required to clean it.

Whereas, if you have been using your RC car in sand or muddy off-road conditions then you should be cleaning it as soon as you are finished using it.

Ultimately, it is down to you on how often you think you should be cleaning it. A well-maintained RC car will last a lot longer than one that is neglected.

Why Do I Need To Clean MY RC Car?

Cleaning your RC car is very important if you want to be able to use it for many years to come.

Dirt, dust, moisture, oil, and fuel are all corrosive in their own ways and can cause problems like rust, weakening of parts, and drying out lubrication which is paramount to the internal workings of an RC car.

Those that don’t clean their RC cars will soon find that they are having to replace parts a lot sooner and will run into a lot more running problems than those that take the time to properly clean and maintain theirs.

Finally, cleaning your RC car allows you to see if anything is broken or getting worn and allows you to be proactive and get that part before your next RC racing session.

Can I Use WD-40 To Clean My RC Car?

Yes, using WD-40 on your RC car is a great way of removing stubborn dirt and oil marks. WD-40 is a sprayable lubricant that will also help to keep the parts running smoothly.

It is also a good way of getting rid of grit in gears and if you get the electrical contact cleaner WD-40 you can spray it directly onto the electrical components. Something which you may find hard to clean any other way.


How Do I Stop My RC Car From Rusting?

Make sure to fully clean your RC car as mentioned earlier using things like an air compressor, toothbrush, WD-40, and water. This will remove any dirt or grime that will help the rusting process.

You should also make sure to fully dry your RC car after cleaning it, standing water and moisture is the main culprit for rust in RC cars.

How Do I Dry My RC Car?

The best way to dry an RC car is to first use a dry cloth or rag and mop up as much of the standing water as possible making sure to get in all the crevices and hidden areas.

Then take a hair drier and put it on the coolest heat possible, at a moderate speed use the drier to blow over the car and its components. This should get rid of any moisture that is still hanging around.

If you don’t have a hair drier available, use a can of air or an air compressor but try to keep the PSA low, or don’t put the nozzle too close to the car to avoid damage.

How Do You Clean Plastic RC Parts?

As mentioned earlier, WD-40 or another alternative is an excellent way to clean plastic RC parts. Simply take your part that requires cleaning and spray a little WD-40 onto it, then use a clean rag and rub liberally over the plastic part.

You should see the dirt lift in no time and the part starts to look as good as new.


Final Thoughts

Cleaning your RC car is an essential part of maintaining it and making sure you get the most from it. Not only that, but it also helps you to realize exactly how your RC car works and what you need to do in the event of a repair.

We hope you have found this article helpful and given you more of an idea of how to clean your RC car.