I know, I know...this is insane. I know all about the debates amongst riders. Some say dry cleaning is the way to go, while others say it is OK to use water if done properly. All I can tell you is that I hate cleaning my bike and to do it right it takes forever. As a result, I rarely do it which is not doing my bike any favors.
So one day I decided to borrow a neighbors power washer and BAM the bike was clean in five minutes. Now when I say clean, I'm talking every speck of grease from within the chain and cogs clean. After the power washer is done it looks as though I just put a new cog set on my wheel.
What if you get water into the bottom bracket or hubs, you ask?
Well, here's my thinking. First of all I already have water that gets in there from the mud and dirt that accumulates from a basic ride. Since I usually don't clean this right away it sits there only to accelerate the detioration of these parts. Also, with the power washer the water is probably removing the mud and dirt particles inside the ball bearings of these parts as it is traveling through with such force. Now that is not to say that I am deliberately aiming at these sensitive parts (I am not, I try to avoid them), however, if an inadvertent spray happens I am comforted by this thought.
Now with my new power washer, I simply blow all of the gunk off while it is still fresh from a ride and store my bike all ready for the next one.
OK...here are some articles that purport to explain the proper way to clean your bike:
Alright, I'm ready now...let me have it!!!