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help with cleaning oem wheels

15 June 2000
What are you using to clean the wheels? I have the oem 7 spoke wheels and I am having no luck getting the brake dust/grime (gummy/sticky)off. I'll admit that these have been neglected for quite some time but I've been scrubbing for over 1 hour on just 1 wheel and it's not even close to being clean yet. My fronts are fine (stock pads) but I upgraded the rear pads about 1500 miles ago (unsure which brand but recommended by NSX Modified) and the new pads make the wheel dirty very quick. I've tried Simple green, Eagle One A2Z cleaner, Eagle One Aluminum wheel cleaner, and that Bleach White (sp?) cleaner. This stuff is working (slowly) but I'd like to finish the wheels before next week. Any thoughts/ideas? Should I bust out some SOS pads? Thank you for your insight
Cleaning the OEM wheel(s) with any harsh cleaner is a very bad idea. It will remove the clearcoat.

Soak the wheel(s) with dawn or other liquid detergent. Repeat to keep wet as necessary.

Do not use an abrasive pad or brush. It will also damage the finish.

97-T @ 14K
You might be fighting a losing war. If you tracked the car and the wheels got "really" hot with harder pads (higher metalic content), this combination welds the brake dust to the clear coat on the wheels. If this has occured you might want to visit your local wheel guy. Just my experience and 2 cents worth.
I've been using a toothbrush and also a brush that came with the Costco car wash kit (too abrasive?). Once the stuff is off, the wheels are very smooth but it is taking so long and I'm not even close to finishing even one of the areas (between each spoke @ the base). I don't track the car but the residue from the pads starting to rust so I decided to finally clean it since it wasn't raining. Yes, I've neglected the car but will never let this happen again.
Just an opinion, but the clear coat is just paint. The best way of cleaning paint would be a cleaner wax. You may want to try one of the clay products, but it may be a little difficult to work on the small surface areas of the spokes. The benefit is if you wax the wheels regularly they are much easier to clean.
I have had great success with P21S. It is usually available at BMW dealerships, speciality car shops, or on the internet.

Once you have the wheels clean, put a few coats of wax on them and they'll rinse clean in the future.
Mother's wheel cleaner. Its more a cream than paste. Real good.

If real dirty, use lots of rags, don't rub dirt back on top of dirt. In other words, constantly move to a clean area of the rag.