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How should I clean my tires?

Old 02-15-17, 06:07 PM
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curbowman
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How should I clean my tires?

HELP! I've just installed a new set of tires and realized I left lots of black fingerprints all over it. How can I clean them without damaging the rubber? Thanks!
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Old 02-15-17, 06:23 PM
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Depends what the black spots are. A clean rag and 90% IPA or straight acetone will work fine for short-term exposure

That said, gum-walls get dirty from braking dust fairly quickly, so I would just deal with the dirty spots. Clean tires are for show bikes.
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Old 02-15-17, 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by wschruba View Post
Clean tires are for show bikes.
I totally agree. It's just that being brand new tires, I kind of wanted them to look good on pictures.
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Old 02-15-17, 06:40 PM
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Fantastic
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Old 02-15-17, 06:42 PM
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Dish soap and water rinsed well, or simply pass on it entirely. They're tires and will get dirty in use. It's their Karma, and you might as well accept that.
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Old 02-16-17, 12:16 AM
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There are many cleaners available on on-line stores for cleaning bike tires. You can get one from there.
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Old 02-16-17, 05:15 AM
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Wipe it off with Simple Green or anything like it. No, it will not damage the rubber. I've used it for many years.
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Old 02-16-17, 06:47 AM
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You Can use Car wash gels here, it works
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Old 02-16-17, 07:31 AM
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Once I tried an auto tire white wall cleaner and it was too harsh for the michelin pro tires. The tire was grey and it ruined the color.
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Old 02-16-17, 07:50 AM
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I clean almost everything on my bikes with a household cleaner like Fantastik or Greased Lightning.
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Old 02-16-17, 08:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Sy Reene View Post
Fantastic
Or, similar.
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Old 02-16-17, 12:26 PM
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Believe it or not. When I was a kid back in the 60's I used to work at a local gas station. A coworker used to rub a brake fluid soaked rag on tires in order to shine them up. Really. I've never seen anybody do it since. Brake fluid is pretty toxic stuff.
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Old 02-16-17, 01:51 PM
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Cleaning dirty tires, is a line that I just refuse to cross.
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Old 02-16-17, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by ramzilla View Post
Brake fluid is pretty toxic stuff.
Only if you ingest it.
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Old 02-16-17, 03:37 PM
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I enjoy riding "Show bikes" and found Westley's Bleche-Wite works great when used properly.



Never spray it directly on dry tires, and never allow it to dry on the tire.

I spray the tires liberally with water and then give 'em a quick, light spray of WBW. Brush with nylon bristle brush and immediately rinse clean.

Product can also be sprayed on the wet brush instead of the tires, but tires still must be watered first.

Works better than a charm, and never caused any problems for me... other than having to occasionally defend comments that I must never ride my bikes, which I'm ok with!
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Old 02-16-17, 04:59 PM
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My cruiser is no showgirl so since it has fenders I've been known to ride through puddles after a rain. There are brite black products for cars that work but not on white sidewalls.
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Old 02-16-17, 05:11 PM
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Frankly, I found cleaning used tires to be kinda smart. I've spotted some cracks, thorns and slices in tires that I couldn't see when they were grungy, especially with MTB tires. I use rubbing alcohol or Simple Green.
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Old 02-17-17, 06:04 AM
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Warm soapy water usually does the trick for me
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Old 02-17-17, 10:17 AM
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Old 02-17-17, 12:47 PM
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Home made solution found from the internet. I also need to wash my tires. I have a pair of white Cheng Shin tire.
mix 2 teaspoons of mild dish soap with 1 teaspoon of lemon oil, 2 gallons of warm water and 1/4 cup of borax. Mix the ingredients in a bucket to create the cleaning solution.

Rinse each tire with fresh water immediately after scrubbing with solution.

Last edited by mtb_addict; 02-17-17 at 01:03 PM.
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Old 02-17-17, 12:51 PM
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Tires

I use a brush on my tires after each ride. Then I wipe the sidewalls with 30 sunscreen, but not any part of the tire that touches the ground. No more sidewall cracks and looks great. Only takes a tiny bit.
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Old 02-17-17, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by tgmcmonigle View Post
Only if you ingest it.
So confused by this post. Are toxins not toxic when they are not being ingested?

To the OP: You can't clean those tires. They have been exposed to the filthy corrupt world. You must throw them away and buy new ones and never take them out of the packaging.
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Old 02-18-17, 06:34 AM
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I've never cleaned tires but wd-40 works well on rubber hoses in an engine bay. It would probably clean off the yellow part and makes the black part shinier. That said I wouldn't bother on a bike.
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Old 02-18-17, 06:50 AM
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Originally Posted by ramzilla View Post
Brake fluid is pretty toxic stuff.
Glycol ether based brake fluid is non-toxic but it makes a poor cleaner. WD-40 is a good degreaser, great for chains for example, but you shouldn't use petroleum-based products on rubber.

I highly recommend Tub O Towels for cleaning bikes and tires.
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Old 02-18-17, 06:52 AM
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Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
I've never cleaned tires but wd-40 works well on rubber hoses in an engine bay.
You should not use petroleum-based cleaners on rubber or plastic parts (tires, hoses, gaskets, CV boots, etc.). Silicon grease is fine.
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