A novel image pre-processing scheme for PIV of single- and two-phase flows over reflecting objects which does not require the use of additional hardware is discussed. The approach for single-phase flow consists of image normalization and intensity stretching followed by background subtraction. For two-phase flow, an additional masking step is added after the background subtraction. The effectiveness of the pre-processing scheme is shown for two examples: PIV of single-phase flow in spacer-filled channels and two-phase flow in these channels. The pre-processing scheme increased the displacement peak detectability significantly and produced high quality vector fields, without the use of additional hardware.