Motul Frame Clean review – environmentally friendly bike cleaner

The auto giant is well-known for its lubricants, so how does its water-based, eco-friendly cleaner compare?

Motul Frame Clean bottle on ground by tree
(Image: © Neal Hunt)

Bike Perfect Verdict

A solid alternative to the other bike cleaners out there with good eco credentials. It works well, though not noticeably better than other options and it's expensive.


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    Eco friendly

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    Effective at shifting dirt

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    The small size works well for trips and post-race clean-downs

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    No residue or streaks post-clean


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    Small size may put high-volume users off

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Motul is a powerhouse in the moto world, and we have been suitably impressed with its wet lube, but how does its bike cleaner stack up against the already well-established bike-specific cleaning brands? As it's been the wettest winter in years here in the north of England, I've had plenty of time to put the French brand's offering through its paces.

Close up of top of spray bottle of Motul Frame Clean

The reassuringly solid trigger works well and has two different spray options (Image credit: Neal Hunt)

Design and specifications

The frame cleaner is part of a wider cleaning range and comes in a 500ml bottle made of fully recycled and recyclable plastic. The cleaner itself is water-based, VOC-free (Volatile Organic Compounds), and is said to be an eco-friendly product made with natural active ingredients that are naturally biodegradable.

At $10.79 / £10.00 for 500ml, it is expensive compared to other similar products. For example, Peaty's Loam Foam is $15.99 / £10.00, and Muc-Off Nano Tech cleaner is $16.99 / £12.00 – both come in bottles twice the size of the Motul cleaner. They are both also available in more cost-effective concentrated versions that you can mix at home. These versions usually work out cheaper and lower the number of single-use plastic bottles.

Close up of front part of bike with frame cleaner on it and brick wall behind

Motul's Frame Clean foams up reasonably well and moves dirt with only a quick brush or sponge (Image credit: Neal Hunt)


Motul's instructions on cleaning vary somewhat from how we would usually suggest you clean your bike. On the bottle I had it suggests you should let it soak on the bike for five to ten minutes after an initial pre-wash or rinse with a hose. However, the videos on Motul's site suggest a more sensible three to five minutes. After talking to the UK distributor, it appears I had a pre-production bottle, and subsequent versions have the correct instructions. It's not the end of the world, but it's worth double-checking. Once it has been left for a sufficient amount of time, simply scrub or agitate the dirt with a sponge or brush and then spray it off. As a rule of thumb, I try to ensure I don't let any frame cleaner dry, as some products can fade colors and accelerate wear if left on for too long.

There were no issues here with the cleaner drying out or causing damage or fading. Presumably, the biodegradable and natural ingredients are much kinder to delicate finishes, though I quickly reverted to my usual method of spraying the worst of the mud off before applying and leaving for a minute before a scrub and final rinse, which got great results without any more effort or waiting. The trigger works well, making it easy to get decent coverage. It's not as foamy as offerings from Peaty's and Muc-Off but did work well and appeared to work better on stubborn dirt like brake dust build-ups near calipers and dried mud in the webbing on the back of suspension fork arches.

Eco-friendly products, especially ones designed for cleaning, often lack the punch of harsher chemicals and struggle to work as well. This product strikes the balance between dirt removal and green credentials well, offering just enough performance without causing damage or leaving any odd residues on polished and matt surfaces as well as anodized components.

The bottle is smaller than similar offerings, and currently, there's no concentrated solution either, which is a shame as with other brands I like to mix the cleaner myself and just keep one bottle. This is not only more eco-friendly but also saves space in the workshop or your bike cleaning area. The smaller bottle is handy, though, for when you're traveling with the bike, perfect for post-trail center or bike race cleaning sessions before putting your pride and joy back in your vehicle.

Hand holding Motul Frame Clean bottle by front of bike frame with brick wall behind

I found giving the bike a quick rinse before applying gave the best results (Image credit: Neal Hunt)


Motul's Frame Clean works well, has good eco credentials, and leaves no marks or weird residues, which is all you really need from a cleaner.

The small size and lack of a concentrated version might put high-mileage users off, but aside from that, it's a solid offering that performs as well as other mainstream offerings but at a high price.

Tech specs: Motul Frame Clean

  • Price: $10.79 / £10.00 / €10.90
  • Spray bottle: Recycled and recyclable plastic
  • Size: 500ml
Neal Hunt
Freelance Writer

Neal has been riding bikes of all persuasions for over 20 years and has had a go at racing most of them to a pretty average level across the board. From town center criteriums to the Megavalanche and pretty much everything in between. Neal has worked in the bicycle industry his entire working life, from starting out as a Saturday lad at the local bike shop to working for global brands in a variety of roles; he has built an in-depth knowledge and love of all things tech. Based in Sheffield, UK, he can be found riding the incredible local trails on a wide variety of bikes whenever he can