My wheels are covered with many small but hard to clean black specks. I
wash th ecar regularly, and
the usual brake dust comes off easily, but these specks stay. I am sure some stiff brush + some
chemicals would clean them, but I do not want to damage that nice metallic enamel the wheel is painted
with. I have a feeling these specks are common and there must be some people on this great forum who
can help - how to clean the wheels from there hard specks and preserve the original paint?
Those black specks could be road tar--the stuff they use to repave roads.
The stuff is nasty and
impossible to get off. About the only thing that I've tried that worked was Turtle Wax's Bug & Tar
Remover. This stuff gets off tree sap and tar. Just be careful when you use it though, the label does say
to try it out on an "inconspicuous area" before going full forch with it on other, more visible, parts of the
Bug & Tar remover is definitely the stuff. I have had success with
a "Kitten" brand product obtained
here in Oz called "Tar & Spot remover" which is in aerosol spray on form. The substance is very fine,
clear and volatile - evaporates within a few seconds after spraying on to the surface.
I find that just a spray or two tends to break down whatever is foreign
on the body or wheel paint. I use
a soft cloth to avoid scratching the paint. It's obviously quite powerful, so I soap wash afterwards so that
nothing residual is munching away at the paintwork. Perhaps this is just paranoia on my part as it says
that it is "completely harmless to all car finishes".
Michael from Sydney
No, the careful steps you've taken is definitely the way to go. Just because
the bottle label says it is safe,
who are you going to blame if and when you find out the hard way that it isn't so "safe?" You know the
old saying: Better safe than sorry.
I consulted with several aloy wheel repair specialists, and all agreed
that WD-40 was the best thing to
use. They all told me that the finishes on volvo wheels are easily damaged by even the 'safe' wheel
detergents. The WD-40 breaks down any tar or grease, and leaves a residue that makes it easy to get
the stuff off in the future. Be patient. It may take a couple of tries to get everything off, but the result is
astounding. The residue fills any imperfections on the wheel, making clean up next time a breeze. I've
been cleaning my wheels with WD for over a year, and they always look great. Take care,
I know the spots you're talking about. I don't think they're road tar since
they're on the rims, but not on
the paint behind the wheels where you'd expect road tar to be kicked up. A polishing compound made
for clear coats, and some elbow grease usually does the trick.
one of those answers has to help!
If you have any experiences, facts, hints comments or data that you think might be useful on the site, please
and I will post it, with an acknowledgement of your contribution (if you so wish).