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BMW 5-Series (G30) Forum Cosmetic Maintenance: Wash, Wax, Detailing, Repairs Wheel Cleaner Recommendations

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      02-07-2019, 11:59 PM   #1
saporitj
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Wheel Cleaner Recommendations

So I'm trying to start a discussion here about safely cleaning the painted BMW wheels.
Here is a thread from the F80 section to get it started.
Wheel Cleaner Help! https://f80.bimmerpost.com/forums/sh....php?t=1571375
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      02-08-2019, 03:25 AM   #2
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I just use car shampoo (autoglym in my case) which does the job nicely. Use the garages jet wash as well if particularly dirty.
Never felt I needed anything else to be honest.
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      02-08-2019, 06:51 AM   #3
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Sonax Full Effect Wheel Cleaner is one of the best in my opinion.

https://www.sonax.com/Products/Xtrem...m-Cleaner-PLUS

Used it for years on Painted and Diamond Cut Alloys with no adverse effects.

Most of the time I do not need to scrub the wheels, Just spray on, leave for 5-10 mins then jet wash off.

I buy 5 litres at a time and decant into a sprayer.
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      02-08-2019, 12:38 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nsa100 View Post
Sonax Full Effect Wheel Cleaner is one of the best in my opinion.

https://www.sonax.com/Products/Xtreme-Series/(location)/56737-SONAX-XTREME-Rim-Cleaner-PLUS

.
From the F80 forum it would appear that Sonax and Gyeon Iron are 2 favorites.
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      02-08-2019, 03:25 PM   #5
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Chemical guys foam cannon honey dew car soap and a brush. Nothing you find is going to do a better job than a bit of elbow grease. Also to shine the tires go to Oreilys auto parts online or in store and get the tire stuff called "cover all". Your tires will look like glass.
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      02-09-2019, 10:17 AM   #6
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I use bilthamber to remove brake dust deposits once in a while (maybe every 6 weeks) to ensure there is no build up of compacted brake dust in the spoke corners.

But on a regular wash (every week) I just use my normal snowfoam while I'm doing the rest of the car. The wheels are the easiest part of my car to clean compared to the lower half of the body - dirt does not seem to stick to my wheels.
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      03-24-2019, 11:55 AM   #7
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UPDATE I tried the Sonax Full Effect Wheel Cleaner and agree with others that it works well. Love the color change but more I love that it appears to get the brake dust off. I usually follow up with regular car soap as part of just washing the car. Only down side is the cost especially since you go through it pretty fast.
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      04-21-2019, 12:28 PM   #8
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I find the best way to keep the wheels in good condition is to first give them a deep clean taking them off ideally so you can get to the barrel properly and the back of the spokes, clay//tar remover/iron X and then give them a polish with some compound if the barrels are marred, then seal the wheels with the wheel wax/sealant of your choice (plenty out there to choose from)

Then maintenance becomes easier using a quality cleaner like Bilt or CarPro bilberry, spray on let it dwell and then jet wash off.
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      04-23-2019, 07:57 PM   #9
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Sonus is the best. leave it on til it turns red. I keep a bottle in my trunk for when I fill up at a gas station and decide to run the car through their wash every once in awhile. I spray it on while the tank fills up, perfect timing. They also make the best tire dressing - stays on for quite awhile.
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      04-23-2019, 09:38 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlf750 View Post
I keep a bottle in my trunk for when I fill up at a gas station and decide to run the car through their wash every once in awhile. I spray it on while the tank fills up, perfect timing.
Be sure the wheels are cool and that the car wash is working. Spraying Sonus on and then letting it dry is not good. I usually wait until I am right at the wash entrance before any wheel spraying - had a few times when it was closed or broken and not visibly so until at the entrance.
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      04-24-2019, 03:33 PM   #11
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agreed, that would cause a problem I'd think for the finish on the wheels. I only do it when the wash is open and I know it only takes about 5 minutes to fill my tank.
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      07-09-2019, 02:57 AM   #12
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Sonax is the most effective product I've tried. It makes wheel cleaning easy.
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      07-14-2019, 03:38 PM   #13
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I use all Griotís Garage products. Their heavy duty wheel cleaner is safe for painted finishes and makes removing brake dust very easy.
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      07-14-2019, 05:11 PM   #14
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Car pro iron X , for me works well. Helps to ceramic coat the wheels after they are clean. Much easier to clean next time
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      07-15-2019, 01:36 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by themnmd View Post
Car pro iron X , for me works well. Helps to ceramic coat the wheels after they are clean. Much easier to clean next time
Agreed. Ceramic coating the wheels makes it much easier and prevents pitting.

The P&S Brake Buster is good stuff. The AutoFanatic foaming wheel cleaner for the iK sprayer is by far the best wheel cleaning solution I have ever used. Shipping is not cheap for the stuff, but the product is the safest and best stuff I have ever seen for wheels.
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      07-29-2019, 03:26 PM   #16
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Sonax FE worked well for me but I couldn't get over the smell. Switched to Megs Ultimate Wheel Cleaner (forget the exact name, but it's the Ultimate line not Hot Shine) and it works just as well as Sonax. With both I still needed to follow up with a wheel brush and then also wash with regular soap/water again during the full wash.

I haven't found any product that get everything off the wheels with just a spray, set, rinse.
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      07-29-2019, 09:30 PM   #17
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Sonax 👍
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      08-13-2019, 09:55 AM   #18
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I am a self admitted detailing geek.

If you can ceramic coat your wheels you will save much time cleaning them for sure.

I wash my car often, and if you do, all you should need is car wash soap and a good set of brushes.

When I do a car that is infrequently washed, the Sonax Full Effect is the best. Smells bad, works great.

Just be careful not to spray on the polished hats as I have seen that leave marks on them.
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      08-18-2019, 05:06 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsf721 View Post
I am a self admitted detailing geek.

If you can ceramic coat your wheels you will save much time cleaning them for sure.

I wash my car often, and if you do, all you should need is car wash soap and a good set of brushes.

When I do a car that is infrequently washed, the Sonax Full Effect is the best. Smells bad, works great.

Just be careful not to spray on the polished hats as I have seen that leave marks on them.
Ceramic coatings will help you clean your wheels. The brake dust does not "stick" to the wheels as much. You can spray your cleaner of choice and then let it do its thing. Use a set of wheel woolies and then spray them down and you are done. Depending on what ceramic coating you used look at their products which are made to work in tandem with their coatings and won't degrade what you have paid for. I got Gtechniq Crystal Serum Ultra on the car so I just use their citrus spray at full strength and my wheels are always clean.
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      08-18-2019, 09:07 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rellascout View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsf721 View Post
I am a self admitted detailing geek.

If you can ceramic coat your wheels you will save much time cleaning them for sure.

I wash my car often, and if you do, all you should need is car wash soap and a good set of brushes.

When I do a car that is infrequently washed, the Sonax Full Effect is the best. Smells bad, works great.

Just be careful not to spray on the polished hats as I have seen that leave marks on them.
Ceramic coatings will help you clean your wheels. The brake dust does not "stick" to the wheels as much. You can spray your cleaner of choice and then let it do its thing. Use a set of wheel woolies and then spray them down and you are done. Depending on what ceramic coating you used look at their products which are made to work in tandem with their coatings and won't degrade what you have paid for. I got Gtechniq Crystal Serum Ultra on the car so I just use their citrus spray at full strength and my wheels are always clean.
I love wheel woolies. They make cleaning the 20" 759i wheels semi tolerable.

Which wheel woolies are your choice? So many vendors selling the same concept. I bought the 3 pack (small, med and large) of Liquid X from Amazon and they seem ok but the handle has a bit too much give. Thinking they're all pretty much the same and private labeled?
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      08-18-2019, 09:56 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by claykin View Post
I love wheel woolies. They make cleaning the 20" 759i wheels semi tolerable.

Which wheel woolies are your choice? So many vendors selling the same concept. I bought the 3 pack (small, med and large) of Liquid X from Amazon and they seem ok but the handle has a bit too much give. Thinking they're all pretty much the same and private labeled?
I think I have Griots. I agree that all of them are basically the same. Mine have been great and I use them everytime I clean the cars.
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      08-19-2019, 12:08 AM   #22
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So a little update. I still like the Sonax wheel cleaner but it stinks and is a little expensive. I've switched to the Adams products for the wheels. They have a wheel cleaner like Sonax that changes colors and a separate tire/inner cleaner. These two products work great, smell great and are a little less expensive. Yes I said smell great. Each of their products has a different fit smell.
For everything thing else it's Adams or Wolfgang. Wolfgang quick detailer is in a class by itself.
I don't like the Sonax quick detailer at all so I'm using it on my wheels until it's gone. Figure maybe it will help with brake dust.
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