Can Cleaning Your Wheels Damage Them?
A new client recently brought his Lamborghini in to get a new clear coat for the wheels. The car was beautiful and shiny and at first glance there seemed to be nothing wrong with it. As I approached the car to get a closer look I could immediately tell that someone had used an abrasive on the wheels causing ugly scratches all over the wheel surface. The client confessed that he didn’t trust anyone with his car and always washed it himself. Upon noticing unsightly grime on his wheels he decided to try a new method of removal. He didn’t realize he was damaging his wheels until it was too late – he had used steel wool which scratched the clear coating on his previously beautiful wheels. He was embarrassed about his error and upset that it was going to cost him time and money to correct.
The good news is that he trusted us with his vehicle and we were able to get the job done to his liking. Too bad we forgot to get a photo of his newly shiny wheels complete with a new clear coat on all four. He drove away a happy customer, or shall I say, sped away with a smile on his face.
Beware of Car Washes
Most car washes are designed to optimize time – to get you in and out quickly – whether it is a full-service wash or a timed self-wash. The truth is that sometimes good care takes a little more time and skill, and good products to get it done right!
We all have heard horror stories about the bumpers and rollers at full service car washes and the damage they can do to rims. There are too many road hazards to worry about as it is, let alone having to worry about receiving wheel damage when your car is “relaxing” at the car spa.
In addition, many of these full service and self-service car washes use cheap cleaners, many of them acid-based, which is not good for wheel health. If you must take your car to a wash, call ahead or visit their website to learn about the process or products they use. Oftentimes, they may not even know if their cleaner is acid-based or that such cleaners are bad for wheels.
DIY is the Best Method
Taking extra care and attention to properly learn how to clean and care for your wheels can extend the beauty and health of your wheels. How and what you choose to clean your wheels with can make a difference. Many of our customers have been the victims of awful cleaning practices whether it is at their own hand or the hands of a “professional” cleaner. Acid-based cleaners are a typical suspect – any cleaner which is required to be rinsed after a few minutes is likely an acid-based cleaner. Acid works great at burning tough brake dust off your wheels but works just as well at eating away at your beautiful clear coat. After a few applications, air, moisture and debris can start getting under the edges of the clear coat and corroding the metal, creating an unsightly road-map type pattern in the finish that cannot be washed off.
If you have damaged wheels due to cleaning or some other ailment such as curb rash, Phoenix Rim Repair can help! Fill out a quote form and we’ll respond within 24 hours.
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