It’s no secret that a car’s wheels take a beating throughout its life. From potholes to salty roads, they endure a lot. Here are ten ways to help maintain them and keep them looking good for as long as possible.
1. Clean Off Brake Dirt
Brake dust should be on top of your list when keeping a car’s wheels clean. Brake dust is unsightly and can cause long-term damage to wheels if left unchecked. The dust is made up of tiny bits of metal that can eat away at the clear coat, leading to corrosion.
In addition, brake dust can build up and cause uneven wear on the brakes themselves, resulting in a need for early replacement. By regularly cleaning off brake dust, drivers can help to extend the life of their wheels and brakes.
2. Stay Away from Curbs
As any driver knows, curbs can be a real pain. Not only do they damage your car’s wheels, but they can also cause flat tires. And if you hit a curb hard enough, you could even end up with a bent wheel.
That’s why it’s important to stay away from curbs while driving. If you can avoid them altogether, you’ll save yourself a lot of money in the long run.
Of course, it’s not always possible to avoid curbs completely. But if you’re careful and take your time, you should be able to minimize the damage to your car’s wheels.
3. Wipe Away Dirt
Most people know that it’s essential to keep their car clean. Not only does a clean car look better, but it can also help protect the paint and extend the vehicle’s life.
However, many people focus on washing the car’s body and neglect the wheels. In reality, though, the wheels are just as important as the rest of the vehicle when it comes to maintenance. Wiping away surface dirt is a great way to keep them looking their best.
Not only does it prevent the build-up of grime, but it also helps remove the brake dust we discussed earlier. Taking a few minutes to clean the wheels regularly can go a long way in maintaining the overall appearance of your car.
4. Wax Them
Waxing is a great way to maintain a car’s wheels for several reasons. First, it helps to protect the wheels from dirt and grime, which can damage the finish. Second, it makes it easier to clean the wheels, as the wax creates a barrier that prevents dirt and grime from sticking to the surface.
Finally, waxing helps to prevent rust and corrosion, which can cause severe damage to the wheels over time. By taking the time to wax your wheels regularly, you can keep them looking their best for years to come.
5. Speed Bumps
Speed bumps are designed to slow down traffic and help improve safety, but they can also be hard on a car’s suspension and wheels. Every time a car hits a speed bump, the wheels absorb the impact, damaging the rims and tires.
Over time, this can lead to alignment problems and premature wear. Additionally, the jarring motion can loosen suspension components and eventually lead to failure. For these reasons, it’s best to avoid speed bumps whenever possible.
If you must drive over them, do so slowly and carefully to minimize the impact on your car.
6. Don’t Drive One a Flat
When a car’s tires become flat, it can cause serious damage to the wheels. Driving on a flat can cause the tire to rub against the wheel, which can wear down the metal and cause the wheel to lose its shape.
In addition, flat tires can make it difficult for the car to turn and cause the suspension to work harder, leading to premature wear and tear.
For these reasons, it’s vital to maintain your car’s tires by ensuring that they are properly inflated. Not only will this help to extend the life of your car’s tires, but it will also help to keep your car’s wheels in good condition.
7. Beware of Salty Roads
Salt is essential for keeping roads ice-free in winter, but it can take a toll on a car’s wheels. The salt can corrode the metal and damage the finish. Moreover, it can cause the tires to lose air pressure. As a result, it is important to avoid driving on salty roads whenever possible.
If you must drive on them, wash your car’s wheels as soon as possible. If you know you’ve been driving on roads that have been recently salted, it makes sense to give them a quick rinse when you get home.
8. Aggressive Car Wash
Most people know that they should avoid aggressive car washing to protect their paint job. However, few people realize that this type of washing can also damage their wheels.
The high-pressure water can force tiny particles of dirt and debris deep into the pores of the metal, leading to corrosion.
Over time, this can cause the wheels to become dull and pitted. For these reasons, it is best to avoid aggressive car washing altogether. Instead, opt for a gentler method, such as hand-washing or washing with a soft brush.
9. Abrasive Cleaning Material
Another way to help keep your wheels looking their best is to avoid using abrasive cleaning materials. These can include harsh chemicals, brushes with stiff bristles, and anything else that might scratch or damage the wheel’s surface.
Instead, opt for gentle cleaners that won’t strip away the protective coating. Abrasive cleaners often look like they are getting the job done quicker but this can lead to long-term damage.
10. Locking Wheel Nuts
Locking wheel nuts are an essential part of any car’s maintenance routine. While they may seem minor, they can play a significant role in protecting your wheels. For one thing, locking wheel nuts help to keep your wheels properly secured.
This is especially important if you live in an area with many potholes or other hazards that could damage your wheels. In addition, locking wheel nuts help to prevent theft. If your wheels are stolen, replacing them can be very expensive.
However, it will be much more difficult for thieves to steal your wheels if you have locking wheel nuts. As a result, keeping hold of your locking wheel nut is a great way to protect your investment and maintain the safety of your car.