4 Steps to Dry Wash Aircraft

4 Steps to Dry Wash Aircraft

Dry Washing aircraft refers to the cleaning of easily noticeable bugs, carbon stains, oil stains etc. off of the exterior.  All blemishes should be removed with relative ease by hand by using our cleaners and clean terry towels. This service will also include wiping down the windshield with Plexi-clear to free it of bugs etc. 

Materials needed for Dry Washing Aircraft are:

  • Ladders & Small Step Stool (Vary Depending on size of aircraft)
  • Powerfoam
  • 3M Masking Tape

– Terry towels

  • Plexi-clear Plexiglass cleaner
  • Micro-fiber cloths
  • Degreaser Spray Bottle (one oz. Spray Nine Earth Soap and then filled with water.)


Step 1: Setup:

a.) Tape Static Ports:  Cover all static ports with small piece of 3M Tape so no products will enter. The static ports are generally located along the sides of the fuselage. (Ask your crew chief to help you locate them/ check aircraft layout page)

b.) Dust paint before proceeding (Onlly necessary

Step 2:  Dry Wash/ Wipe Down Exterior:

a.) Select a Panel: Look for bugs, dirt, grease, exhaust stains, and any other blemishes that can be easily removed from the surface of aircraft. Be sure to look at belly as this is where most grease and buildup happens. *It’s best to start cleaning at the nose of aircraft and work your way backwards down the fuselage. Polish the wings after you finish the fuselage. You may need to stand on the inner-wing to polish areas on top of the fuselage.

b.) Spray and Clean: Hold Powerfoam 8 inches from surface and spray until foam covers the affected area. Then Take clean terry towel cloth and rub into Powerfoam with fingers to agitate the bugs, grease, dirt, etc off the dirty paint. Once area is cleaned, wipe surface with a clean terry towel to remove streaks etc..

c.) Check and Continue: Check over your now clean paint and check for streaks, more bugs etc. then continue to next area of affected paint. Continue this process over every affected area of the exterior.

Step 3: Wipedown Windows & Brightwork:

a.) Clean Windows/Windshield: Wipe off windshield & windows by spraying them down with Plexi-clear. Completely cover the area of windshield that you’re cleaning. Once covered, take a clean terry towel cloth and swipe the surface clean. Once Plexi-clear is fully cleared off the surface, take a clean micro-fiber and wipe surface down to remove streaks etc. Be sure to look at work once finished to make sure there’s no streaks, especially on the windshield.

  1. Wipe Bright Work Clean (if not polishing): The same procedure can be used to clean bugs off the bright work: Spray them with Plexi-clear and wipe clean and dry with a terry towel.

Step 4: Wrap It Up:

a.) Remove Tape: Remove ALL Tape from Static Ports and Edges of Paint that you were working on.

b.) Check work AGAIN: Check over work for streaks, missed areas, etc.

c.) Clean Up: Put dirty rags in correct bins, throw away trash & gloves etc.



Step 1. To remove very tough belly grease sometime Powerfoam doesn’t cut it. Using Spray Nine’s Earth Soap fill the pump spray bottle with 1 oz. Earth Soap and the rest with water. (preferrably warm/hot)

Step 2: Spray Earth Soap mixture onto scrubbing sponge and start to scrub and agitate the grease off of belly one section at a time.

Step 3: Once grease begins to come up, wipe clean with terry or micro fiber  towel.

Step 4: Repeat this process over the tough grease areas.


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