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Make Sure That After Market Wheels Are Maintained and Cleaned with Care

While OEM accessories and wheels are designed to fit precisely to the axel of the car in which they were made, you have to be more circumspect when you are fitting after market wheels onto your vehicle. For example, most after market wheels have center bores that are bigger than the OEM size for the same wheel. Therefore, the gap must be filled to prevent damage to lugnuts and wheels with hub-centric spacers.

The Difference between OEM and After Market Wheel Products

OEM wheels are wheels that were made by the original equipment manufacturer (thus, the acronym “OEM”) while after market accessories, including wheels and rims, are replicas of the original offerings.

While some after market products are hard to distinguish, many times, from OEM car parts, there is a difference with respect to the level of quality. Therefore, you have to be doubly careful about keeping after market wheels damage-free, especially when it comes to avoiding scratches or maintaining a wheel’s finish.

Don’t Scrape the Curb

While hub-centric spacers can assist you in keeping wheels and lugnuts intact, it is also essential to make sure that you take care while driving or cleaning your vehicle too.

For example, about 75% of the damage that is experienced to wheel finishes is brought about by scraping the curb. Wheels that are sold in the after market often exhibit edges too that stick out past the edge of the tire. Some of the wheels also feature spokes that curve past the edge of the rim.

As a result, wheels often succumb to what mechanics kiddingly call a case of curb rash. Indeed, you have to watch out for curbs as they can aggressively jump out at you at a moment’s notice. In fact, many drivers think street curbs are a bit “too jumpy” at times.

Avoid Parking along the Curb

However, that being said, most cases of “curb rash” come from parking parallel or along the street. Therefore, if you want to avoid any problems with scratches or marks, you need to find a parking lot in which to park and avoid parking along the curb.

What Not to Use when Cleaning Wheels on Autos

Lesser quality wheels must also be cleaned with greater care. How you clean your wheels and the product you use to clean them are both significant aspects of the activity. Therefore, stay totally away from acid-based cleaners as well as steel wool.

Instead, clean your wheels, always keeping the descriptive “gentle” in mind. Water combined with a gentle cleanser or soap and a bit of elbow grease will keep your wheels looking both pristine and sparkling.

Some full-service car washes also use acid-based wheel cleaners. Therefore, wash the wheels on your vehicle yourself if you want to keep them from getting damaged.

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