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How to Remove Glue From Alloy Wheels

Updated February 21, 2017

Made of aluminium, magnesium or a combination of both metals, alloy wheels are found on a variety of cars, trucks, motorcycles and other vehicles. The wheels endure dust, dirt, grime and other debris, but are easy to maintain. Like other parts on your vehicle, when a substance like glue is spilt or splashed on alloy wheels, the substance adheres to the wheel surface. To remove glue from your vehicle's alloy wheels, you need a chemical that won't damage the metal or leave a residue behind.

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  1. Fill a bucket with one gallon of warm water. Wear latex gloves to keep your hands from getting wet.

  2. Dip a soft non-abrasive cloth or towel into the bucket of water. Wring out excess water.

  3. Wipe the alloy wheel with the wet cloth or towel to remove any loose dust or dirt from the wheel.

  4. Apply two tbsp of lacquer thinner or white spirit to the cloth or towel.

  5. Scrub the area of glue on the alloy wheel with the cloth or towel that contains the lacquer thinner or white spirit.

  6. Re-apply lacquer thinner or white spirit to the cloth or towel. Continue scrubbing the wheel until the glue is removed from the alloy wheel.

  7. Add one tbsp of an automotive wash to the bucket of warm water.

  8. Dip another clean, soft non-abrasive cloth or towel in to the bucket of soapy water. Wring out excess soap solution.

  9. Wash the alloy wheel with the soap solution-soaked cloth.

  10. Rinse the alloy wheel with water from a hose.

  11. Dry the wheel with a clean, soft non-abrasive cloth or towel.

  12. Tip

    If the smell of lacquer thinner or white spirit bothers you, wear a nose mask. Work in a well-ventilated area when using lacquer thinner or white spirit.

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Things You'll Need

  • Bucket
  • Warm water
  • Latex gloves
  • 3 soft non-abrasive cloths or towels
  • Lacquer thinner or white spirit
  • Automotive wash
  • Water hose

About the Author

Nick Davis is a freelance writer specializing in technical, travel and entertainment articles. He holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Memphis and an associate degree in computer information systems from the State Technical Institute at Memphis. His work has appeared in "Elite Memphis" and "The Daily Helmsman" in Memphis, Tenn. He is currently living in Albuquerque, N.M.

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