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Aluminum Wheels - Proper Care?

I have a 2008 Honda Civic Hybrid. The car has aluminum wheels with a clear coat finish. The owners manual says to just wash the rims like you would the rest of the car. I’d like to keep the wheels looking new. Any recommendations? Any non-abrasive polish I can use to keep the rims new? Any comments are welcome. Thank you!

As long as the clear coat is intact, you can treat the wheels the same way you treat the body: keep them clean (brake dust can damage the finish), and use regular car wax. The big thing is to avoid using the Braille method of parallel parking- curbs will mess up the wheels somethig fierce!

The same wax you use for the car is good for the wheels, too. There are special wheel waxes at auto parts stores, but I think the difference is in the package, not the contents. Don’t use anything abrasive on the wheels.

The worst thing you can do to your wheels is scrape the curb while parking. That removes the clear coat. As long as the clear coat remains intact, the wheels will look good with minimal care.

Aluminum is attacked by some mild alkaline solutions, and any soap cleaner will be alkaline. Make sure that it is mild, buffered, and OK for aluminum. That way you won’t get any metal etching iven if the clear coat is rubbed off in spots.

BTW, it’s also attacked by acids, but I don’t expect you’d clean with an acid.