How to Remove Aluminum Oxidation From Window Paint

Written by nick davis
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How to Remove Aluminum Oxidation From Window Paint
Use steel wool to remove oxidation from window paint. (oxidised face on cannon image by Chris Bibbo from

Oxidation is a chemical reaction that occurs when air meets a metal surface, like aluminium windows, and starts to form a layer of a grime-like substance on the surface. Oxidation is a dark, metallic-looking substance that happens to both bare and painted surfaces. The substance forms over time and is removable, but eventually returns to painted windows, metal awnings and other metal structures. When removing aluminium oxidation from window paint, you want to remove the oxidation and treat the window with a chemical to help fight against future metal oxidation.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 3 Nonabrasive cloth or rag
  • Latex gloves
  • Steel wool: fine
  • Water hose
  • High-quality car wax

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  1. 1

    Wipe the window paint with an nonabrasive cloth or rag to remove any loose dust and dirt from the paint. Wear latex gloves to keep your hands clean.

  2. 2

    Wipe the oxidise window paint gently with a piece of fine steel wool. Do not use too much pressure--this will lead to the window paint being stripped. The oxidation will come off in pieces.

    Steel wool is available at hardware, home improvement and retail superstores.

  3. 3

    Wipe the window paint with the nonabrasive cloth or rag to remove the loose oxidation piece. Continue using the steel wool on the window paint until the oxidation is gone.

  4. 4

    Wash down the window paint with water from a water hose. Wipe the window paint dry with a clean, nonabrasive cloth or rag.

  5. 5

    Apply 3 tbsp of a high-quality car wax to a clean nonabrasive cloth or rag. Wipe the window paint with the wax-soaked cloth or rag to protect the paint against future metal oxidation.

Tips and warnings

  • Do not use a power washer or power sprayer to clean window paint. These devices are too powerful and will strip the window paint.

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