How to Maintain Your Alloy Wheels

Are You Showing Your Alloys The Love?

It’s amazing how many people keep the body of their car cleaned, polished and generally well maintained and then completely forget about the wheels.

Even those nice shiny alloys!

As well as their improvements in the handling and responsiveness of your car, alloys are a cosmetic favourite because, quite simply they add a touch of class to your car. But if you want to keep them glinting in the sunshine as you cruise along the motorway then you’re going to need to keep them well maintained and clean.

So, how do you maintain your alloy wheels and keep them all shiny and new?

The reality is, keeping your alloys in pristine condition really isn’t that hard. Certainly no more than the effort you put in on the rest of your car.

Simple, regular cleaning and maintenance can make all the difference, ensuring your wheels remain looking the business and, of course, keeping any potentially corroding grime to a minimum to increase the alloy’s longevity.

Before we begin, assemble your equipment:

Some form of cleaning applicator – this might be a soft, non-abrasive sponge or cloth, a cleaning mitt and, if possible a special wheel cleaning brush.

A dry, non-abrasive cloth or rag for wiping down

Appropriate cleaning fluid – it’s important that you choose a cleaning product which is compatible with the coating and paint on your alloys. Check with your manufacturer guidelines or seek advice from a specialist retailer before buying.

Alloy wheel polish or wax – again, check with retailer to ensure that the polish or wax you select is compatible with the coatings and paint on your wheels.

A cloth, rag or similar applicator for polish or wax

Oh yes – you’re going to need water (warm and soapy would be best) and access to a hose pipe providing clean, cold water as well.

Ok, Let’s Get Cleaning

I suppose that it sort of goes without saying that you should wait until you’ve got a dry day before embarking on cleaning your alloys – as I’m sure you would when cleaning the rest of the car.

1. Prep the wheels by giving them a rinse with clean water. If you’ve got a hose pipe, use it to spray the entire wheel, ensuring that you get into any spokes and other nooks and crannies.
2. Take you cloth, sponge, mitt or similar and apply soapy water to the wheel. Go gently so as not to scratch the surface and ensure that you apply to all the tricky to get to areas.
3. Rinse thoroughly with the hose
4. Re-apply soapy water if required. If you have a wheel brush, use this to get into the spokes and interior parts of the alloy wheel.
5. Rinse thoroughly again.
6. Once cleaned and rinse, wipe down with the dry cloth.

Your Alloys are Clean – Now Let’s Protect Them

As stated above, ensure you have the correct material for this stage. Polishes and waxes are dependent on the type of alloy and type of coating on the wheel. Finishes such as chrome or aluminium are going to require polish specific to those materials for example.

1. Apply the polish or wax using a soft applicator such as a rag or cloth, ensuring that all areas of the surface are covered.
2. With a clean, dry cloth buff the wheel thoroughly until you have an even shine.

And that’s it – done.

If you regularly clean and maintain your alloy wheels in this way you can keep them gleaming and dramatically enhancing the overall appearance of your car.

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