Tips to Clean Tires and Rims

Tires are indubitably some of the most important parts of your car and even if it may sound like piece of cake, cleaning tires and rims could prove to be quite a difficult task because it's somehow a bit more difficult to get the shiny and mirror-like finish. Tires represent the way the vehicle interacts with the road and are directly related to a number of factors, including handling, comfort, stability and speed as well as braking, steering and load support. There are several types of tires available nowadays, with tire manufacturers producing various models, depending on car model, performance, weather, dimensions and a couple of different factors.

So, cleaning tires and rims depends on the type of tires your vehicle has and although universal cleaners are recommended for1 all models, there are several steps to follow before proceeding to the task itself.

Tires can be easily cleaned using one of the many syntethic wheel cleaners available on the market, but you should really read all the provided instructions before applying the cleaner. Some people prefer to use regular soap, laundry detergent or even shampoo, which by the way are not recommended. All these materials do nothing more than to keep the tire clean for a limited period of time, without protecting the surface or its appearance.

First of all, let's see what you'll need: vleaning solution, be it a spraying cleaner or fluid cleaner, a sponge or a brush (smaller is better because it would allow you to clean every single tiny spot of dust) and several washcloths for applying the cleaner on the whole surface of both the tire and the rims .

Now, a few instructions. First and foremost, apply the cleaner on the tire. Never and I emphasiz but never leave the cleaner longer than recommended! It may damage the tire plus it could turn that cute black appearance the tires got when you bought the car into nice memories. Clean a single wheel at
a time: apply the material on the tire, allow it to work for a bit and them scrub the surface with a sponge or a washcloth. Use plenty of water to clean the wheel and, after doing it, use dry washcloths to absorb the remaining drops. Be sure to remove the whole amount of cleaner! Repeat the process for all the other wheels/tires.

Also, do not start washing the wheels in case they're still hot from driving. It's recommended to let the wheels cool because spraying the hot brakes with cold water may damage the discs and obviously alter the braking force of your car.

Rims can be easily cleaned using a cleaner especially created for this task, but there are still a couple of steps to be followed in order to get a shiny and mirror-like appearance. Similar to the aforementioned advices for cleaning the tires, it's recommended to use a round tiny brush that can remove dirt even from the hardest to reach spots. However, it's better to use a soft sponge in order to avoid scratching the rims.

Use as much water as you need, just be sure the rims do not get water spots from drying; you should clean them with a dry and soft washcloth. In case your car is equipped with alloy wheels, you could always purchase separate cleaners for extra-shine.

Last but not least, it's worth mentioning that it would be a smart idea to clean the wheels and the rims after washing the rest of the car, just in case you aim to keep that nice-looking shiny appearance. It may sound stupid, but you know, it's better to prevent than cure. And because we're sure you'd like to protect your tires for as much as possible, here's an article that may help you a bit.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
Bogdan Popa profile photo

Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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