Home Remedies for Car Tires

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Whether you’ve splashed through a thick mud puddle or ran over something less desirable in the middle of the road, your tires certainly take a beating over time. To remove dirt, grime and odor without any hassle – home remedies for car tires can become a real lifesaver.

Car Tire Home Remedies

Who would have thought that items found in your kitchen cabinets or refrigerator could come in handy when you needed to clean the tires on your car? Some home remedies for car tires will even add a shine and make whitewalls glow. To explore your options, consider some of the suggestions below:

a) Mustard[1]:

To get rid of the smell of skunk roadkill, add one cup of mustard powder to a bucket of warm water. Mix the ingredients well, and then splash it on your tires, wheels and the underbody of the car to eliminate the very unpleasant odor.

b) Cooking Spray or Vegetable Oil:

To remove the fine, black powder that you find on your car tires (brake dust), apply a small amount of cooking spray or vegetable oil. Leave on the oil for 10 minutes, and then wipe off. Spray or apply once again when finished to reduce the amount of dust that collects in the future.

c) Tube Sock:

When you need something to help you shine up the tires, use a tube soak for buffing.

d) Mayonnaise:

To remove tar and pine sap from the tires of your car, apply mayonnaise and leave on for a couple of minutes. With a soft, clean rag, wipe off the residue.

e) Steel Wool Pads:

To clean your whitewall tires, use the finest steel wool pad you can find.

f) Pair of Socks:

To make changing a car tire a less messy experience, store a pair of old socks in the trunk to put over your hands. This will prevent getting some of the grime, oil and mud on your hands as you fix your tire.

g) Garden Hose:

Before grimy mud has a chance to become a caked-on disaster, spray your tires with the garden hose to prevent an unattractive buildup.

h) Borax, Liquid Soap and Bleach:

To create a homemade tire cleaner, you can mix together Borax, liquid soap (with a vegetable base), lemon oil and bleach. The bleach will help whiten the letters and stripes on the tire. The liquid soap (like Murphy’s oil soap) adds shine to the tire. Cover the tires in the mixture. Use a washcloth to apply the solution to the cracks and crevices of the hubcaps. Don’t forget to thoroughly rinse the tires to make sure the soap residue is removed. It is suggested to follow this remedy on a weekly basis to protect your tires from the damage that salt and sand can cause.

i) Motor Oil:

Some people have applied a coating of motor oil to the sides of their tires to make them shine. When using this remedy, be very careful that you do not get the oil into the treads or you could interfere with the tire’s ability to grip the surface of the road.

j) Prewash is Important:

Before applying any homemade tire cleaners, it is important to prewash your tires for the best results. First, rinse off the tires using a hose, and then use a scrub brush with an abrasive agent (like baking soda) to wash the tires. Start at the top and then use a use a clockwise motion until the entire tire is covered with a cleansing foam. Rinse and then follow up with your homemade remedy for car tires.

k) Olive Oil and Lemon Juice:

Add two parts of olive oil and one part lemon juice to a spray bottle to make a remedy that add shine to your car tires. Rub the treatment into the tires using a clean cloth, and buff off any excess with a different clean cloth.


[1] Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things by Reader’s Digest; pg. 216.