A car’s wheels is one of the most important things to take care of when you’re an owner. A wheel replacement can cost anywhere from $600 to $800. Going for a car wash is great for the exterior – a shiny car is always impressive to look at, and a clean car will always have a high resale value should you decide to sell it off and buy another one.
Selling a car with bad wheels will be difficult so to make sure you don’t spend too much money trying to sell off a car, here are some tips and tricks in keeping the wheels clean and functional.
1. Schedule cleaning at least twice a month.
Ideally, cleaning the wheels on a car should be done every after trip but this isn’t practical. Car Wash staff always clean the alloys first because it’s the first area to get dirty. It’s advisable that the wheels should be allowed to cool off prior to washing them as the difference in temperature will allow scratches to develop easily on the alloys.
Scheduling cleaning twice a month saves you time and money – by maintaining the wheels, you’re less likely to spend more when they get damaged.
2. Removing brake dust.
Wheels are extremely close to the brakes and the friction produced on a daily basis grinds material. The dust can be hard to get off once they settle on the surface of the alloy. To remove them, you’re going to need a pressure washer to blast the stubborn stain off the metal.
If a pressure washer is not available, a soft bristled brush is a good option. Just make sure to use a lot of water as dry brushes will scratch the alloy.
Brake dust is one of the most stubborn stains to remove as it is made with metal fillings, rubber composites, and various types of strong adhesive. Always take the time to clean out brake dust.
3. Check the Tire Pressure and Appearance
Part of cleaning the tires is making sure they’re inflated properly. Tires which have too much pressure will increase its grip strength on the road, which is good, but at the cost of increasing fuel consumption. Deflated tires are “sticky” and will cause it to heat up, further damaging the tires.
You’ll know if it’s time to replace the wheels if the treading pattern is starting to become shallow. Cleaning tires isn’t going to save you from accidents from a non-gripping tire.
4. Your driving manners affect your wheels.
It’s not only by cleaning that tires get the attention they deserve. The way you drive your car affects the lifetime of your car. Loading excessive amounts of weight onto your car gives the wheels a harder time to move around. Driving efficiently by minimizing the times you need to brake or accelerate helps tires last longer.
5. Reading car wheel manufacturing info.
Not a lot of people know this but car wheels have a unique identifier which contains information about when the tire was made. This is also a useful trick when buying new tires as you don’t want to purchase something that’s been sitting in a warehouse for more than a decade already.