Winter is here, the trails are filthy and mud management is key. Arm yourself with one of the latest mobile bike washers to keep the dirt on the trail, not in your car. We have been battling the mud to tell you which is best.

When it comes to year-round mountain biking there’s one great mystery. How is it that when left on the trail, ‘mud’ stays wet and, well, muddy? But, when left overnight on your bike, it solidifies into a substance that’s 17 times stronger than diamond and resistant to all but the most barbaric of cleaning tactics. We all know that the best time to clean your bike is when it’s still wet, but that’s not always so simple when you are far from home. If you’re often faced with the ugly task of threading a pair of grimy bikes into the back of the family estate car, it’s perhaps time to think of a mobile bike washer.

The Mobile Bike Washer – Ammunition Against The Mud

A mobile bike washer is an incredible invention, up there with the wheel and fire, carrying a reservoir of water and a low pressure hose, it offers enough power to clean down your bike at the trailhead, no more arguments about mud on the headlining of the car. The best washers can be easily transported and give you enough water carrying capacity to clean a couple of bikes in the car park, making new friends, keeping your marriage harmonious and dramatically reducing time spent scrubbing mud off your bike. The medium powered pressure hose is enough to ‘knock the lumps off’ without driving out all the grease in the bikes bearings – nobody needs enough force to blast the wrinkles off an elephant.

Under Pressure – But Not Too Much

The best bike washer should have enough capacity to clean at least two bikes and be powerful enough to shift stubborn mud – without stripping the paint off your frame. An adjustable spray pattern is beneficial to work around your bikes sensitive areas, and brush attachments will help give a showroom shine. The best washers have an rechargeable battery to power though a number of refills for longer bike holidays or weekend racing events, and some are able to run directly from your car battery. Above all the washer should be compact and easy to transport in a normal car without leaking everywhere, and be built robustly enough to be abused in car parks by tired, cold hands.

Washer Price Battery Life 12V Capacity/Cleaning time* Wash Power Portability Value for Money
Aqua2go € 189 27 min X 20L/7,4 min
Nomad 18 V £ 185 54 min 14L/5,2 min
Kärcher OC 3 € 159 22 min 4L/2,0 min
Mobi V-15 € 123 X 15L/6,5 min
RinseKit € 99 10L/1,5 min

*cleaning time you get out of one filled tank

A Washer For All

In this test we have five of the current leading mobile washers, with models for all budgets. The Mobi V-15, a very light and affordable 15 L washer that omits a rechargeable battery in favour of the simplicity of a 12 volt cable. The very compact and cleverly designed 4 L Kärcher OC 3 offers a big punch for its size, what it lacks in volume it makes up for in portability. The innovative Black RinseKit uses nothing the your home water pressure to store 10 L of water under pressure, with no moving parts is simplicity king? At the more expensive end of the spectrum we have the Nomad 18 V Cordless mobile washer which features an adjustable spray strength, a 14 L water tank and enough battery juice to use up to ten tanks of water before recharging. And finally, the all singing, all dancing Aqua2go PRO, featuring a 20 L reservoir, detachable power supply and USB charging station so you can Instabang the cleaning action, albeit at a substantial price.


Still kicking
Using a 18 V battery more commonly found in power tools, the Nomad 18 V Cordless delivers an impressive 54 minutes of run time
Added extras
The Aqua2go features an integrated torch and removable pump allowing you to draw water from other sources. The torch is useful when you drop your thru-axle in the dark when loading the car.
Power is nothing without control
The Nomad 18 V Cordless features an easily adjustable spray pattern, letting you reduce the force for more sensitive areas of your bike
Compact but with punch
While the Kärcher OC 3 lacked the capacity for two bikes without a refill, it’s diminutive size means that it fits into the boots of even the smallest cars


So much potential
We loved the simple Mobi V-15, it offers great cleaning capacity and uses the simplicity of 12 V power from your car. But, reliability issues were disappointing.
Peaking too soon
When we fired up the Black RinseKit , we were amazed with the power, but all too quickly it faded away leaving us waving a pathetic stream of dribble over our bikes – you need to be fast
Poor build quality
The Aqua2go PRO brings some great features to the table, however we were concerned with the quality of the plastics, the cheap feeling charger fell apart.
No 12v input
The Nomad 18 V Cordless took a victory in this test, but we did miss a 12 V direct input. However, after communication with Nomad, they stated that 12 V could not provide satisfactory pressure in their more powerful system, fair enough.

But Can They Clean?

The mobile bike washers have been suffering some serious abuse at the hands of our test team, put through the rigours of daily use. We tested flow rate, maximum battery life, how many bikes could be washed in one charge and how quickly the battery can be recharged. The washers were flipped upside down in the car, kicked and generally abused to see if we could promote a leak, and the spray nozzles were stepped on and dropped to check the quality of the fixtures. We have never had such clean bikes.

Conclusion – You Get What You Pay For

You may think that you don’t really need a mobile bike washer, but we have to admit that we were seriously impressed with their function. Cleaning the bikes at the trailhead reduced the ‘faff time’ of winter riding – giving more time for post ride beers. We were disappointed with the Black RinseKit , it’s a clever idea, but in use it did not deliver the washing time we needed. The Mobi V-15 is a great washer, taking our Best Value award, with great capacity and simple 12 V operation, but reliability issues were a little worrying. The Kärcher OC 3 surprised us all – a great washer for those with limited space, but ultimately the small capacity was only suitable for one bike. The Aqua2go PRO and Nomad 18 V Cordless both allowed us to clean two bikes fully, and offered the capacity and battery life for longer trips away. The Aqua2go PRO was brimming with features, but the higher build quality and rugged fitments of the Nomad 18 V Cordless take the Best in Test win – you really do get what you pay for.

Best in test – Nomad 18 V
Best value – Mobi V-15

This article is from ENDURO issue #031

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