Detailing Question from STAN

Submitted on 27/08/2011

took my car to car wash, the wheel cleaner they used has ruined the top coat or chrome on my wheels,they said it was not them but i,cannot prove it.the wheels are 20inch chrome clad ( plastic covers) that are stuck on to the wheel what can i do.i have sent pics of wheels. Model: dodge nitro

This is a very tricky one. There is a possibility that, if the wheels were dirty, the dirt could have covered up these marks. In other words, the damage could have been done by a previous clean. However looking at the pictures, these kind of wheel is not going to be resilient to wheel cleaner. My guess is that the manufacturer is made a mistake. I wouldn't mind betting that there's an awful lot of these kind of wheels with this problem. If you were to go back to the manufacturer and get these wheels replaced, then I would suggest that you would have to be extremely careful. They would be extremely difficult to clean without using a wheel cleaner.
 Almost all wheel cleaners are acid-based, so wherever you go for a clean, you're likely to get the problem unless you asked the company who cleans the car is to not use a wheel cleaning product.
You could be lucky with a chrome cleaner and a whole lot comes off leaving a lovely shiny wheel, but my guess is that this is permanent.
My suggestion is to go back to the main dealer that supplies the cars from new. There may be replacing them under warranty? I have heard of this sort of thing before. Or you may be able to buy a different kind of wheel/trim.

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