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      05-29-2010, 04:14 PM   #1
blender
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Best way to keep leather streering wheel clean?

What's your best recipe for cleaning both the leather and the plastic on the M steering wheel?

I just replaced the spoke covers due to film/scratches/wear from driving gloves/hands/GF's jewelry. The matte black coating on the spokes had come off in small spots revealing the shiny plastic underneath.

I want to clean the leather wheel while I have it apart. What's the best way going forward to remove any film buildup on the plastic and leather? I have ruled out the 'black restorer' products that 'restore' plastic and/or leave a lasting film behind.

Incidentally it looks like the BMW M driving gloves leave a black [dye?] residue on the M leather steering wheel in nice hot weather.

Any personal experience with Vinylex, 404 protectant, other?

thx

rc
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      05-29-2010, 09:43 PM   #2
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The finish on my CPO steering wheel is scratched up, too. I looked into replacements but $180 is too steep. Is this what you got?

Steering Wheel Spoke Covers (Black) $179.00 (#32348035326)
Steering Wheel Spoke Covers (Chrome) $179.00 (#32346785703)
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      05-30-2010, 01:18 AM   #3
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I clean the leather part of the steering wheel in the following manner.

Cup of water in a plastic container. Get regular Mr. Clean magic eraser use it to GENTLY (we know you're strong, but now is not the time) wipe around the wheel. Rinsing the sponge regularly. Continually wipe dry with a micro fiber towel and to wipe off excess dirty water.

When dry, grab a clean/old-ish toothbrush a bottle of shout spray. spray the shout onto the toothbrush and neatly and gently brush the tri-colored M stitching around the steering wheel. Wiping off with a microfiber towel as you go.

Lastly, with everything dry, follow up with your choice of leather condition. Let set for a few minutes and then wipe excess condition off.

I just did this whole process on my dad's E46 M today. I didn't take any before shots unfortunately. Too many people apply conditioner and shiny junk, and it makes the steering wheel look like crap. The leather should be matte - not shiny. Loading conditioner onto of dirt already on there is like takes a bath in dirty bath water.




(eek!)


(eeeewwww!)




I did the same thing (minus the shout) for the armrest.

(here you can see when I took one swipe with the sponge and the difference)


(after complete cleaning and then conditioner)



I did the same thing on my wheel awhile back:
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Last edited by fitchesbass; 05-30-2010 at 09:10 PM.
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      05-30-2010, 02:20 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 45ACP View Post
The finish on my CPO steering wheel is scratched up, too. I looked into replacements but $180 is too steep. Is this what you got?

Steering Wheel Spoke Covers (Black) $179.00 (#32348035326)
Steering Wheel Spoke Covers (Chrome) $179.00 (#32346785703)

yup: Steering Wheel Spoke Covers (Black) $179.00 (#32348035326)

but $164 at Tischer.
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      05-30-2010, 02:22 PM   #5
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Nice! no troubles with the Mr Clean magic sponge?

thx

rob
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      05-30-2010, 05:18 PM   #6
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Use a slightly damp MF with leather cleaner. Wipe it again with dry MF. Redo if necessary.
apply conditioner and wipe off excess. Bought my car used and couldn't believe the difference after my first clean treatment.
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      05-30-2010, 08:36 PM   #7
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I've tried the magic eraser trick on my friend's '00 S2000. It did rejuvenate the looks of interior trims. I'd try this on an old beat-up car when the interior already looks like shit anyway, but there's no way in hell I'd do it to my Z4MC.

BMW's leather has a layer of clear-coat on the surface, so when you apply magic eraser on it, you're essentially removing (at least some of the if not all of) the clear-coat.
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      05-30-2010, 09:05 PM   #8
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BMW leather is suppose to be matte, not shiny. the shine is really due to the build up of dirt.

Although I agree the magic eraser should be used with limited use and in a safe manner, it serves as a good method of removing dirt. Applying leatherique or some other conditioner to the steering wheel will protect it once it's clean.

I have used this magic eraser trick on a number of leather products of the past few years and with the right use, have seen great results.

To each their own, use at your own risk. I certainly would not clean your wheel with it every wheel, but once a year gently going around the wheel to remove dirt build up is OK by me.

Some detailers swear by and others think it's horrible on the detailing forums. I am person that believes it works miracle's with moderation and correct usage.


It's like rock chip repair.. if you do it horribly it could end up damaging the paint on the car ever more. But if you know the proper steps and methods including how to wet sand; the result will fix the original issue / damage with great results. Just a thought.
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Last edited by fitchesbass; 05-30-2010 at 09:18 PM.
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      05-31-2010, 11:41 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fitchesbass View Post
BMW leather is suppose to be matte, not shiny. the shine is really due to the build up of dirt.
Yes, BMW's leather is supposed to be matte and not shiny. But still, there's a layer of clear-coat on top of BMW's leather. You're right - to each his own. Personally, I prefer constant cleaning and maintaining over taking the chance to remove the top clear-coat with magic eraser.
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      06-02-2010, 11:42 PM   #10
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I just dampen a microfiber towel, spray it a couple times with Zymol leather cleaner that I get at Target. Lather the towel and lightly scrub the wheel. I find it cleans not only the leather but also makes the tri-stitching bright again. Wipe dry with a second towel and then apply Zymol leather conditioner (also from Target), buff with dry towel. This leaves behind a clean, conditioned, non-glossy finish.
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