Is the tire shine applied at car washes safe for the tires

I have bought a membership to a car wash that allows me to run it through unlimited times during the month for $21. One of the things it does is put a tire shine product onto the tires.

I have heard over the years that these products degrade the tires. Other articles I’ve written say it’s silicone based products.

Does anyone have real (true) story on whether these products are bad for the car, or should I tell the car wash folks to turn it off as my car goes through the wash?

You shouldn’t use Armor All on tires because it’s petroleum based.


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Thanks…I have no idea what kind of tire shine they use at this car wash. I’m guessing that silicone based products are also bad for the car since silicone is derived from Petroleum?

It is fine, don’t worry about it. I would worry more about the lack of clearcoat.

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The car has a ‘recall’ from Toyota for problems with the paint peeling and it includes my model year car. Toyota told me that the oxidation of the clear coat is the first part and then the peeling, but the paint has to be peeling before they will cover repainting the car. As I mentioned in my post, the car was bought second hand, and in the few years since I’ve bought it, its kept in a garage so not really exposed to sun and elements so I don’t expect the paint to start peeling anytime soon.

It’s also a crummy time to buy a new or used car as the prices of used cars in some cases are going for more than the original purchase price.

Years back I took one of my vehcile’s to a full service car wash they put Armor All on the dash, steering wheel, gear shift, and all other plastic surfaces they could find within less than a day every thing they put it got stickey to the point I had to wear gloves for a long time whenever I drove it I don’t know if they put it on tires or not as I was living on a dusty gravel road at the time and by the time I got home the tire shine was gone.

Had a car wash near us, $41 for lifetime, 6 months later they closed!

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This is from a local company called Flagstop. They have been opening up a number of locations locally, but you’re right. You never know how long these places will last. It does an OK job on the cleaning. So far over the past couple of months since I got it, I’ve been happy.

Have you considered taking it to get a budget repaint job in the original color? Or at least get an estimate on re clearcoating those areas affected? MAACO comes to mind…

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My opinion is that you should avoid both petroleum products and silicone. If they won’t tell you the ingredients, I’d skip their application and wipe on some 303 protectant at home.

I AM worried about the clear coat, lol. It’s a 2013 and with the prices of used cars being so high right now, it doesn’t make sense to get a car for another couple of years or until prices stabilize so now I’m thinking of just getting the car repainted…

Toyota wanted something like $10k-$12k to repaint…more than the car is worth, lol. MAACO gave me an estimate of slightly less than $3000 but not sure about the kind of job they do.

I guess part of the frustration is cleaning the car and just seeing the dirt that won’t come off and not having that shine. I don’t want to keep the car and not do anything because if paint starts peeling or the car gets much worse looking, I’m going to get less when I go to sell it…

You don’t seem to understand that the “shine” left with the clearcoat.

You are going to get less in any event as it gets older, it is simply a matter of how much less. 8 year old car, kept 3 more years is an 11 year old car selling for a few thousand less than now.

You get what you pay for. A $3K paint job won’t be a custom paint job, it won’t even be as good as factory, but it will be shiny and you can wax it every week if you want. I’ve had them paint 2 of my cars. Both turned out pretty well and held up. Same for one my Dad had painted.

By what I can see, the car is worth $12K or so. A 3 year older car is worth maybe $9K. A $10K paint job isn’t worth spending on the car. A $3000 job might worth it if it allows you stop worrying about the car and enjoy it until you sell it.

The options you have are… Just wash it and accept how it looks… Or pony up the $3K and have it painted.