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How to Clean Your Dirty Rims & Tires at Home Like a Pro

We rely on our cars on a daily basis to run errands and get us from point A to B. Whether you’re making a groceries pit stop on the way home from work, taking your car out for a romantic night out, or maybe even bringing your vehicle out to a car meet - it’s important to remember that cars are not only an integral part of our daily lives but are also often seen as an extension of our personalities.

Just as we make first impressions, our cars do too. The condition of your car can say a lot about your personality -- so put your best wheels and tires forward!

You already know the importance of seasonal auto detailing, and how it can preserve your investment and protect your car. You understand the dangers of abrasive automatic car washes and avoid them at all costs. So how do you bring back that showroom shine and new car feel? The best place to start is with your car wheels.

Making sure your dirty rims and wheels are clean will not only keep your car looking shiny and new, but also protect your wheels from brake dust.

We’re here to teach you how to clean your car wheels like a pro, all from the comfort of your own home! It’s time to roll up your sleeves and give those dirty car rims the TLC they deserve.

The Importance of Wheel Detailing and Care

Is there anything better than the feeling of sitting in a freshly detailed, clean car? The average Canadian spends 240 hours a year commuting in their car, that’s a lot of time to spend in a dirty car.

Unfortunately, when we do get around to cleaning our cars, the wheels are often overlooked. It’s essential to keep your tires clean! Dirty wheels are not only an eyesore but can leave lasting damage on your car if left untreated.

Brake dust is a corrosive substance composed of metal and other materials from your brake pads and rotors that attach to your wheels during use. Over time, brake dust damages your wheel surface.

PRO TIP: In order to avoid the corrosion, make sure you’re cleaning your wheels on a bi-weekly basis.

Shiny Maintenance Detail on Black Audi A4 All-Road
Maintenance Detail on Black A4 All-Road by @wetwerks.autospa

Cleaning Your Wheels Like a Pro: What You Will Need

If you want to clean your wheels at home like a pro, there are a few products and supplies you’ll need to get started. It’s important to invest in the right equipment and cleaner for your tires and wheels, or else you may end up doing them more harm than good.

You will need:

  • pH-Neutral Wheel Cleaner designed specifically for your wheels. Using the wrong cleaner on your wheels and rims may result in corrosion or premature ageing on the finish of your rims. (i.e using a chrome wheel cleaner would damage your alloy wheels.)

  • Tire Cleaner for your rubber tires so that you don't damage them

  • Biodegradable Degreaser

  • Soft Bristle Wheel Brushes to gently agitate the stuck-on dirt

  • Microfibre Towel to dry the wheels

  • Protective Gloves as we are working with chemicals

  • A Bucket

  • Water Source either a hose or a pressure washer

  • Rim Polish to bring back that shine

  • Wheel Wax or Tire Dressing to seal in all of your hard work

How to Clean Your Dirty Rims & Tire Wheels At Home

If you can’t make it to the shop and are planning on cleaning your entire car, always start with the wheels and use the two bucket method.

Remember to work one wheel at a time, so the cleaners don’t dry out and cake onto your tires.

Step 1: To start, make sure your wheels are cool to the touch, or else the degreaser and wheel cleaners

will not be as effective.

Step 2: Rinse off your wheels with a hose or pressure washer to remove loose dirt and debris.

Step 3: Spray degreaser liberally, give it time to set in, and start to break down the grime.

Step 4: While waiting for the degreaser, spray your tires with a tire cleaner. Take a clean wheel brush and scrub until the foam turns white. Rinse your wheels with water.

Step 5: Once the degreaser and tire cleaner has been rinsed off, apply your wheel cleaner, coating the wheels thoroughly.

Let it sit for 1 minute, and use a clean brush or microfiber towel to agitate any leftover debris, rinse and repeat as necessary.

Once you’re satisfied, use a microfiber towel to dry the wheel completely.

Step 6: Use a clean microfiber towel and rim polish buff the wheels to bring back the shine. *This step is especially important if you have alloy wheels.

Step 7: Lock in all of your hard work with a wheel wax. This step must be performed on dry wheels, or else the wax will not work.

For superior protection, use a tire dressing.

Step 8: Finally, you can sit back and admire all of your hard work!

Vancouver’s Premium Auto Detailing & Cosmetic Services: We’re Here to Help!

Is it time to book an auto detailing appointment for your beloved vehicle? Leave it to the pros.

When you book with Wetwerks Auto Spa, you can rest assured knowing that your car is in the best hands. We love cars, as much as you do.

Our certified techs are professionally trained and we only use the highest quality products, including System X Ceramic Coating and XPEL Paint Protection Film. Don’t forget - we offer 10% off every visit for our valued VIP members subscribed to wetwerksautospa.com.

Whether you’re looking for car detailing, paint correction, ceramic coatings, or for