Auto Detailing Guide – Cleaning Car Trim
May 28, 2013
Washing, scrubbing, and waxing your car should be a regular chore for you if you want to keep it looking like new for years. The importance of consistent maintenance and upkeep cannot be overemphasized when it comes to a machine that suffers through daily abuse from the elements and wear and tear.
If only every car owner treated his car like the investment that it is, and detailed it religiously as recommended, we wouldn’t be seeing dirty, ugly, inefficient vehicles on the road at all. And cleaning your car doesn’t just mean hosing it down with water or scrubbing it half-heartedly every weekend. You have got to learn DIY detailing, and call in your professional car care experts every once in a while, if you wish to keep your car’s pristine condition for the rest of its lifetime.
A generic cleaning product can work well for most surfaces of your car, such as the hood or the leather upholstery. However, some areas do require special attention, such as your tires, your headlights, or your exterior trim.
The Beauty of Car Trim
The trim on your car is a snazzy decorative molding that could have come with it straight from the factory, or perhaps you simply had it added to your vehicle as an after-market customization piece. Black exterior car trim adds drama and flair to any color vehicle, and it also sets your car apart from the many other vehicles of the same make and model traversing the highways. It accentuates the lines of your vehicle and provides weatherproofing qualities as well.
Exterior car trim is usually made out of PVC, plastic or rubber. It is usually attached to the car’s bumpers and fenders, door handles, and side panels. Once you have the car trim in place, you’ll instantly notice how much more streamlined and impressive your car looks.
Caring for Your Exterior Car Trim Properly
Your car trim is made from a completely different material from the rest of your car, and if you’re not careful about picking your cleaning products, you might end up unintentionally damaging or peeling it off your vehicle. In time, even the toughest car trim can dry out, crack or fade, and you’ll be left with ugly straight lines from where the trim adhered to your vehicle.
Before washing your car, be sure to remove any wax or protectant that has been previously applied to your rubber or plastic trim. Wax repels water, and you wouldn’t be able to clean the exterior car trim properly if wax is still present on it. Use a mild but effective car wash shampoo that works well on both metal and plastic or rubber so you don’t have to buy two kinds of cleaning products. You can apply a soft brush to remove caked-on mud and dirt on the trim.
Once the trim is completely dry, apply your desired protectant product to keep the plastic or rubber from drying out. If the trim on your car has already faded to a dull color, you can also use a trim restorer to bring back its color and sheen.
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