Take the 2-minute tour ×
Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for mechanics and DIY enthusiast owners of cars, trucks, and motorcycles. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I've had my car for 1 month and 2,000 miles now and my wheels, which were once very shiny chrome, now look like I painted them gray because the brake dust is so bad.

First of all, is brake dust always going to be this much of an issue, or is it worse since I just got the car and it had been sitting at a dealer for months before.

Second of all, how long is it safe to leave it on the car without cleaning the wheels? I'm worried that it will start to corrode the wheels but I don't want to have to wash them every two weeks unless it's necessary.

share|improve this question
add comment

2 Answers 2

up vote 5 down vote accepted

First of all, is brake dust always going to be this much of an issue, or is it worse since I just got the car and it had been sitting at a dealer for months before.

Yes, you're always going to have brake dust. A lot? It's hard to say. You'll always have more on the front wheels than the rears due to brake bias.

Second of all, how long is it safe to leave it on the car without cleaning the wheels?

Well, brake dust will corrode your wheels over time but not very much per day. Mine are 125K miles old and they don't look new but they don't look bad. You're going to have to find a balance between your need for shine and the fact that you have to go to work.

I'm worried that it will start to corrode the wheels but I don't want to have to wash them every two weeks unless it's necessary.

Here's what I do: spray the wheels (stock WRX wheels) with Simple Green before washing the car. Rinse off the wheels when I'm done washing the car. Wipe off spots where the dust has pooled while washing.

Your product selection and procedure may vary.

share|improve this answer
    
I use a similar product, and add an extra step at the end - another application and then a scrub using a soft brush, followed by a final rinse. It just gets some of the hard to clean bits done. I also spray it on the brake covers to bring the STi colours back out form under their black coating of dust :-) –  Rory Alsop May 23 '12 at 7:42
    
long exasperated sigh - you STI guys and your fascination with pink.... –  Bob Cross Jun 2 '12 at 2:18
    
Haha, actually my brakes are a pleasant gold colour, and I have removed as many pink badges from the car as I could. –  Rory Alsop Jun 2 '12 at 8:48
1  
I use a good hard paste wax on my wheels once a season, it makes washing brake dust off super easy, and provides an additional line of defense against corrosion. –  mac Nov 18 '13 at 20:28
add comment

Brake dust will always be a problem with your current pads.When it is due for a brake job check out several brands as some offer low dust versions.If you are really concerned change the pads now even if they are still good.The big issue with brake dust is it is an abrasive.Use something made to wash wheels.It will suspend the grit in a liquid so it can be hosed off.Then apply a polish for wheels.JC whitney at one time offered a brake shield that mounted between the rotor and the wheel to keep the dust off the wheel.They were not very pretty but they did work.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.