Dressing your tyres to perfection is often referred to as the ‘last job’ in the detailing process, but in actuality, preparing your rubber for all that pampering is actually one of the very first. The short of it is that there’s more to getting an impeccable finish than many think. So, here’s three top tyre tips, just to help you achieve yours...
1. Always, always clean your tyres first
It may sound obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people neglect this stage, opting instead for slapping way too much ‘shine’ over the top of the grime. This is a sure-fire way of preventing any dressing from adhering to the rubber, and it means that product will inevitably end up splattering all over your freshly detailed paintwork. Thoroughly cleaning your tyres during the wheel wash stage is not only an easy solution to a messy problem, but an essential process to ensure that dressings bond effectively.
The quickest way to cleanse your sidewalls, while tackling even the heaviest soiling, is to follow a thorough wheel wash procedure, using your pressure washer and a suitable cleaner, like Iron Out Contaminant Remover, Imperial Wheel Cleaner or Revolution Wheel Soap. After that, a small amount of Verso All-Purpose Cleaner with a soft detailing brush will go a long way. Once rinsed off, your tyres will be ready to accept a suitable dressing.
A top-quality dressing, like our Satin Tyre Crème, will provide a durable barrier from the elements, and also be packed with ultraviolet-inhibitors to eliminate the effects of UV light. Unlike many cheap ‘tyre shine’ products, which will remain sticky to the touch, Satin Tyre Crème won’t pick up dirt as soon as you pull away, either.
2. Don’t forget that it’s all about protection
Subtle satin, or high-gloss wet-look, sidewalls are always the perfect finishing touch, but remember that the best tyre products are as much about protection as they are aesthetics. Your tyres are the only part of your vehicle to physically touch the ground, so it’s obvious that - along with your wheels - they’ll suffer the most from prolonged contact with salt and road grime. What’s not so obvious is that tyres are also particularly susceptible to UV radiation, which causes unsightly browning and (eventually) surface cracking. So, with that in mind, it’s important to choose the correct dressing for enhanced protection, as well as your desired finish.
One other important consideration is nourishment of the actual tyre, simply to keep the rubber in tip top condition. Traditionally water-based products are more easily absorbed into tyres and give a subtle, classic finish. Whereas silicone-based products are less easily absorbed, but typically offer more of a glossy, wet look. The huge advantage of using Satin is that it offers both end results. This layer-able, water-biased gel is quickly absorbed to enrich your tyres, but you can start with a clean, natural matte finish, and simply add more layers for extra high-gloss shine.
3. Remember that application is everything
Don’t forget that your tyres actually spin, and rather quickly in most cases, too. So, along with making sure the dressing you choose is of the ‘low sling’, dry-touch variety, it’s also crucial to use a carful application method, and the correct amount of product. Painting or spraying on a far more liberal amount than needed is one of the most common mistakes in detailing. It’s also the easiest way to waste your hard-earned cash.
For the best results, and to get even coverage that won’t sling your dressing, we’d recommend our dedicated Tyre and Trim Applicator, or our 85mm waffle Tyre Spot Pad (designed for use with our Handi Polishing Puck). Utilising these specialist items, without spraying or applying directly from the bottle, will make your life infinitely easier… not to mention a whole lot cleaner.