Your rims aren't going to look their best if they aren't clean, but you could be worried about damaging them when you're washing them. Specifically, you have to worry about scratching or otherwise damaging the clear coat during cleaning, which can make otherwise beautiful rims look quite unsightly. Luckily, following these tips can help you avoid doing this type of damage while allowing you to get your rims nice and clean.
Use a Soft Cloth
You're going to want to avoid using anything other than a soft cloth when cleaning your rims. Steel wool or metal sponges might seem like they are great for getting rid of caked-on dirt, grime and brake dust, but they can be equally as good at scratching your clear coat. Instead, use a soft microfiber cloth, which you can purchase on the cleaning aisle in many mass market retail stores or can find at an auto parts store. Another idea is to cut an old, worn-out, soft T-shirt into rags. Instead of using a stiff brush or sponge, let the cleaning agent that you choose do the work.
Avoid Acidic Cleaners
You might like cleaning agents that have lemon or other citrus fruits as an ingredient, and these cleaners can be great for household use. They should be avoided when you are cleaning your rims, however, because the acid in these cleaners can actually eat through the clear coat. Instead, you're going to want to stick to cleaners that are designed specifically for use on rims; along with being designed not to damage the clear coat, rim cleaners are also specifically made to be effective at eating away at brake dust and other dirt and grime that you will be trying to remove from your wheels.
Make Sure Your Cleaning Cloth is Clean
It's a common mistake -- continuing to use the same cleaning cloth to clean all of your rims without rinsing it thoroughly as you should. However, a cleaning cloth that has picked up sand or other debris can actually severely scratch the clear coat on your rims. It's best to rinse your cloth out thoroughly and regularly while cleaning your wheels and to switch to a different cloth when you don't feel as if you can get it clean anymore without a more thorough washing.
You want your rims to look better after you wash them, not worse. Luckily, following these tips can help you avoid damaging the clear coat or otherwise damaging your rims. Contact a company that sells wheels for more information on how to properly care for your wheels.
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