Our cars aren’t just necessities—they’re also accessories. Proud car owners want to keep their vehicles in the best possible condition, so it comes as no surprise that the U.S. car detailing industry is constantly growing—in 2018, it accrued a revenue of $12 billion. This number is proof of the pride that people take in their cars.
When it come to car care, wheels are just as important the rest of your vehicle. Cleaning your wheels may seem like an easy task overall, but there are a few common mistakes people make when cleaning a car wheel.
It makes sense to clean your wheels last, right? After all, if you’re washing your car from the top down, the wheels would naturally be the final step. However, that actually isn’t the ideal way to go about the task. Being closest to the ground, your wheels collect the most dirt and other debris such as salt. If you clean the wheels last, you might splash some of this grime onto other parts of your newly cleaned car—and the last thing you want to do is revisit an area you’ve already washed.
Using a brush is a great way to ensure you’re really cleaning all the debris from your wheels. If your wheels are dry, however, a brush can do more harm than good. The abrasive texture of the brush could scratch the surface of the wheel rim, especially if the rim has a chrome coating or a custom paint job.
Many people use dish soap or laundry detergent when cleaning their cars. This, however, is unadvisable, as these items contain stripping agents. These formulas are created to eliminate grease and oils from dishes and laundry, and they can be too harsh for your car. They might make your car look good, but they can ultimately do more harm than good. Use a specially formulated car soap instead.
If you’re detailing your car, you want to make sure it has the proper finishing touches. If you simply wash your wheels and call it a day, you may find that something feels unfinished. Your 2015 Toyota Camry’s rims, for example, may not look dirty—but they could also look better. Finishing things off with a nice coat of polish is a surefire way to make sure your rims shine as brightly as they can.