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Should You Wash Your Car Wheels First?


Car wash day comes around, and you’re thinking, should you wash your car wheels first? This thought has crossed every car owner’s mind at least once. You grab your bucket, carwash mitts, soap mixture, and can’t decide what section of the car to start cleaning.

The next time you are riddled with the question, should you wash your car wheels first? The answer is yes. An indispensable tip in Car washing 101 is cleaning the wheels before other parts.

 This article guides you on the proper way to wash your car, particularly your wheels, so you don’t do it the wrong way next time.

The Right Way to Wash Your Car Wheels

Car washing is a straightforward but meticulous process. Most people ignore the correct order of washing or cleaning a car. The idea of the proper order in washing a vehicle is foreign to some people.

washing car wheels

Cleaning your car wheels is one thing; it is another to learn to clean them the right way. It takes the right tools, products, and techniques to achieve an optimum cleaning result like all other maintenance processes. 

How do you clean your car wheels efficiently and ensure that they stay in good condition?

Use safe cleaning materials.        

It is possible to screw up your car maintenance by cleaning your wheels the wrong way. Car wheels are probably one of the most complex parts to keep in good condition due to the many elements. Do not forget that your wheels are a valuable investment, and you should treat them as such. Not using suitable cleaning materials or methods can cause damages that cost you extra time and money.

Designated cleaning tools.

It is advisable to have a range of brushes dedicated to cleaning different car sections. Use stiff brushes for rough surfaces like the tires and wheels and soft bristles for the rims or paint. The rationale behind this is to avoid cross-contamination of different sections of the car. We recommend using selective buckets for specific parts of the vehicle to prevent scratches on delicate parts of the vehicle. It would help if you didn’t use the wash mitts for your wheels to clean the paint area. There is the possibility of scratching the paint area with sharp particles gathered from cleaning the wheels.

One wheel at a time.

We can’t dispute that washing a car can be time-consuming, not to mention stressful. Many people mix soap and water to hasten the process and give the car a quick rinse. Some even make the mistake of cleaning all the wheels simultaneously in a bid to multi-task. Apart from running the risk of becoming lightheaded from running in circles, washing all the wheels at once is counterintuitive and won’t quicken the process. The right way is to focus your attention on one wheel at a time. This ensures that the cleaning agent does not dry on one wheel while rinsing off the other.

Clean on a regular basis.

It goes without saying that the best way to maintain your wheels is by cleaning them regularly. Regular cleaning is a pretty basic but effective maintenance tip. Think of your car wheels as your feet. You wouldn’t want to leave them untidy and hurt after a long day’s walk. At the same time, It is unrealistic to suggest washing your car every day as you do your feet. However, a thorough bi-weekly washdown or at least a rinse every fortnight should do some good. If they go without proper cleaning for months, it could build up dirty materials that could damage the wheels.

Additionally, periodic waxing will maintain the original shine of your wheel and protect it from different elements. 

Using wash mitts and an essential soap and water mixture, scrub your wheels delicately but precisely. Steer clear of abrasive cleaners, stiff brushes, or chemical washers that have the potential to damage your wheels.

Wash the wheels first.

Wheel cleaning in car washing is a necessary process that car owners often overlook. However, it is an essential step in keeping your car exterior clean and scratch-free.Washing your car the wrong way could disrupt its general performance and maintenance. We recommend that you wash your car wheels first for a plethora of reasons.

Why Should You Wash Your Car Wheels First?



We all agree that wheels are typically the dirtiest part of a car exterior. It can be disturbing to see those pairs of tires drenched in mud or brake dust stuck in the rim’s clear coat. Dirty wheels ruin the fancy appearance of the car and honestly cramp your style. Since the tires and rims are constantly in contact with the ground, different elements under different weather, and all kinds of dirt, abrasions, stone, dust, and road grime, they take all the beating, so you should handle them with just as much care as the rest of your car.

Preventative maintenance.

Asides from appearance, cleaning your wheels first also works for preventative maintenance. An improperly cleaned car wheel could cause corrosion. Washing your wheels reduces brake dust buildup that can interfere with your car’s performance.

 On a practical note, when you wash the tires and rims last, there is a high tendency that nasty water and stains will splash on your car’s freshly polished or waxed paint. Moreover, you are likely to introduce water spots this way. When it’s time to wash your car, it is only logical that you clean the soiled part first.

Cleaning the paint area of the car first could expose your washed car to overspray while you rinse. 


“Anything worth doing is worth doing well” put this in mind when your next carwash day comes. Always start from bottom to top, even if you’re tempted to do otherwise.

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