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Recommendations to Clean Brake Dust from Wheels?

  1. Jul 21, 2012 #1
    I'm not talking about caked on or burnt on brake dust due to years of neglect. I'm talking my car has 5000 miles on it and came out from an oil change with greasy brake dust all over my alloy wheels. I am not the type to scrub my wheels all weekend, so I want to nip this in the bud before it burns on. If I let it go too long, I am sure it will burn on.

    Any thoughts on how I can remove this fresh stuff without it being an all day event? I am thinking of using brake cleaner and then washing it off thoroughly with soapy water.
     
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  3. Jul 21, 2012 #2

    chemisttree

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    Soapy water first followed by degreaser/tire cleaner at the coin-operated carwash. I wouldn't use brake cleaner if it is possible that it might come in contact with rubber, especially if the rubber (tire) is a key safety component.
     
  4. Jul 21, 2012 #3

    Dr Transport

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    Amour-All has a product for getting brake dust and grime off of wheels, spray it on and watch everything run off. It doesn't do anything to the tire rubber itself.
     
  5. Jul 21, 2012 #4

    Dembadon

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    ^ That's what I do.

    http://www.armorall.com/products/view_product.php?product_id=28&main_group=3&category_index=wheel [Broken]

    I wouldn't use brake cleaner unless you're actually planning on cleaning your brake pads or rotors.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017
  6. Jul 21, 2012 #5
    I think I'll give that Armour-All all a shot. Brake cleaner is a bit overkill, though I wonder how the ingredients compare to what's in the Armour-All. I notice in the link they recommend waxing the wheels. Maybe I'll give that a shot as well.
     
  7. Jul 21, 2012 #6

    turbo

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    Good to know about Armor-All cleaner. I have alloy wheels on my Ridgeline, and they could afford to look a little nicer.
     
  8. Jul 21, 2012 #7

    micromass

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    Aren't you allergic to that?
     
  9. Jul 21, 2012 #8

    turbo

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    I can get my wife to spray the wheels and rinse them off with a hose. I don't use any aerosol products.

    She's the one who sprayed the wasp-killer in our woodshed after I got stung.
     
  10. Jul 21, 2012 #9

    Dembadon

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    I think they recommend waxing the wheels so that you will spend more money on their products. :wink:

    Waxing the wheels makes the rubber look squeaky clean, but I'm unaware of any mechanical/performance related advantages to doing so.
     
  11. Jul 21, 2012 #10
    I am pretty sure waxing the wheels (not the tires) is intended to make the next washing easier. Just like waxing your car: the dirt and grime adheres to the wax and makes for less scrubbing next car wash.
     
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