To devote time to cleaning or having your vehicle and its tires & wheels cleaned is essential to keep them running well and looking their best. Regardless if it’s your first time cleaning your vehicle’s tires & wheels because of the pandemic or like to think of yourself as a living one-stop auto shop, chances are you’ve probably made one or two of the most common tire & wheel cleaning mistakes. If you have been lucky enough to avoid making such mistakes, then take note of the list below and take care to teach others to avoid doing them as well!
Cleaning all the tires & wheels at the same time might seem like a good idea, but it’s not. The most common mistake when cleaning tires & wheels is cleaning them all simultaneously. You’ll be wasting even more time and energy while spreading yourself too thin. Instead, do so one at a time and take your time. First, get the tire or wheel soapy and wet, then start cleaning. Move on to the next when you’re satisfied and repeat the process.
- Using the same dirty cleaning materials (brushes, towels, and others) on everything!
“Linis-dumi” is a Filipino term for a dirty way of cleaning. Yes, it’s possible to clean something and still end up with them being dirty. This happens when you don’t clean your cleaning materials before and after cleaning. Rinse them off after use so that they can more effectively capture the mud, brake dust, and road salt that usually end up all over your tires & wheels.
To safeguard your wheel from scratches and spots, brush it while it’s wet. And don’t use a steel wool brush or scrub too hard with a scouring pad. Also, always ensure that your tires & wheels have cooled down before washing them and applying any soap or cleaner on them.
There are a lot of car cleaning products on the market, so pay attention to the labels before you buy something. Only use cleaners with a low level of acid and pH to protect your tires & wheels. The acid will get the wheels clean and clear of all dirt and brake dust. Unfortunately, it will also strip the wheel’s protective and aesthetic finish. Dish soap is good for getting grease off if you don’t have any other cleaner, but it’s not made for deep cleaning vehicles, tires, and wheels. If you use a wheel and tire cleaner-in-one, it is okay to get it on your wheels, regardless of whether they’re a 185R14C type. However, some wheel and tire cleaners are only designed for specific wheels, so read instructions carefully before using them.
Devoting time to knowing your vehicle and its different components will also help you care for it properly. If you have sensitive skin or know someone who has, you would probably think that cleaning and washing your vehicle and its tires & wheels aren’t that dissimilar from cleansing sensitive skin. Moreover, bad reactions can happen from using the wrong soap, scrub brushes, or towels – exercise proper care for your vehicle’s tires & wheels. Letting dirt and grime hang out too long can cause your wheel finishes to peel and can even make the tire rims more porous, creating tire pressure leaks. Avoid making the above cleaning mistakes, and your vehicles (and yourself) will be happy.
Frank is an energetic salesman. On his free days, he spends his time writing and reading about quality tires and vehicular parts. He says it’s because of his love for cars ever since he was a kid when his dad started teaching him about automotive parts.