How to Safely and Effectively Clean Your Wheels

As usual, when it comes to any task, it’s important to have the right tools for the job. Here are a few things to acquire before cleaning your wheels.

Wheel brush soft bristle
Soft bristle wheel brush
  • Soft bristle brush– It’s just the right width, just the right softness, and just the right hardness. It won’t scratch painted rims, but it will catch most of the dirt and grim on a wheel

All purpose Degreaser from Chemical guys.
Grime Reaper
  • Wheel Degreaser– Any strong wheel degreaser. Preferably Grime Reaper from Chemical Guys or Brighto from Ardex. (Must be diluted to desired strength with water).

spray bottle Ardex
Chemical Spray Bottle
  • Spray bottle- any functional spray bottle that can hold strong cleaning chemicals and spray effectively.

Carefully dilute your degreaser with water into the spray bottle. Follow the product instructions for whichever you chose to go with.

Have a hose (or pressure washer) standing by with a spray nozzle on the end. You should always wear protective eyewear and gloves when using any chemical. Stand upwind of your work area so you’re not breathing in the chemicals after you spray them. Also, consider where you are cleaning your wheels. If the wheels are heavily soiled (as they usually are) they will leave behind a lot of dirt and grime which does not look pretty on your (or your client’s) new driveway.

Spray down your work area thoroughly with water to loosen any excess dirt. Then spray down the wheel generously with the degreaser solution. Use the soft bristle brush to clean the face of the wheel, the outside surface of the tire, the lug nut recesses, and any visible, reachable areas inside the wheel. Once you’ve scrubbed all areas with the brush, spray down the wheel until all chemicals, grime, and loose dirt have been washed away.

Your wheel should be clean, and you can dress it up with the tire dressing of your choice for that extra shine.

Repeat this process three more times (unless you’re cleaning a motorcycle).

Make sure whatever chemicals you use to clean, they are safe for the rim/wheel you are cleaning. We’ve detailed plenty of customer’s cars who have rims that were damaged by using the wrong chemicals. Specifically painted rims. Acid wheel wash can come in handy with specific wheels but is not recommended for most.