How To Polish Motorcycle Wheels? [A Complete Guide]


How To Polish Motorcycle Wheels

Like any other vehicle, motorcycles also come with wheels that consist of spoke, rims, and metals. So, motorcycle wheels can be vulnerable if not taken care of. Most people don’t know how to polish motorcycle wheels to brighten them up.  

Polishing motorcycle wheels seem to be intimidating especially if you are a noob in polishing motorcycle wheels. But some ways can make your motorcycle wheel polishing a cinch. 

In this article, I’ll let you know how to polish motorcycle wheels by sharing some tips to make your motorcycle wheels’ polishing easy.  Let’s jump into it

5 Steps To Polish Motorcycle Wheels: The Easiest Way To Do It:

Most of the motorcycle wheels of today come with aluminum alloy that is made up of nonferrous alloys, stronger than conventional steel wheels. But if the wheels are not cleaned and polished properly, the motorcycle wheels can be damaged.

Polishing motorcycle wheels is a lengthy process but the following steps would guide you throughout the polishing process and make your motorcycle polishing quite easy. Here we go!

Step-1: Things That You Require To Polish Motorcycle Wheels: 

Before polishing your motorcycle wheels, you need to keep the following things at your hand. Using the below equipment, you can polish your motorcycle wheels. Let’s take a glimpse –

  • Steel Wool
  • Mag & Aluminum Polish
  • Microfiber Towel
  • 150, 220, 1000 grit Sandpaper
  • Zephyr Polishing
  • Power Drill
  • Metal Polish
  • Clean Rag
  • Drill with a cloth tip
  • Autosol Cream
  • Scotch Brite
  • SoapNeverr Dull Wadding Polish
  • Goo Gone
  • Paper towels

Step-2: Clean The Motorcycle Aluminum:

Once you are prepared with the necessary equipment, the foremost task is to clean the surface of your motorcycle wheels. Let’s get started with cleaning the surface first. Removing the dirt is very important. Let’s start with a good clean surface in this particular case 

The brake dust that causes damage to your aluminum rims and spokes comes from oxygen and iron. You need to get rid of the brake dust with the grit sandpaper of 220. If oxidation stills remain after sanding, you can go for a bit higher sandpaper. 

  • Use Masking Tape:

Be careful of the paint of the rims while washing the ring so that the paint doesn’t come off. To protect the deoxidation areas of the motorcycle wheels you need masking tape to cover those areas from getting further damage to the paint. 

Step-3: Clean The Spokes:

After cleaning and getting rid of the oxidation from the aluminum wheels of your motorcycle, clean the spokes of the wheels. The following paragraphs will help you learn about the cleaning process. 

  • Apply Autosol Cream To Clean The Spokes Of The Motorcycle Wheels:

With autosol cream, you can rub the spokes to clean the grime and dirt. Firstly, You need to take some autosol cream and rub the cream with your fingers over the spokes. Using an autosol mixed rag, rub the spokes to clean the dirt and grimes. 

  • Use A Drill With A Cloth Tip To Clean The Spokes:

Once the back part of the spokes is cleaned, use a drill with a cloth tip to rub the front part of the spokes the same way. Thus, cleaning the spokes ensures that the wheels of the motorcycle are now ready to be polished.

Step-4: Sand The Surface Of Your Motorcycle Wheels:

As most of the motorcycle wheels are of aluminum metals, there might be deoxidation over the motorcycle rims. You need to clean these areas to make the aluminum rims ready for polishing.

With 150, 220, and 1000 grit sandpaper, you can consecutively sand your motorcycle wheel’s rims that have oxidation. While sanding with sandpapers, you can spray with detergent or soap mixed with water hose. 

With 150 grit sandpaper, you can start with then you can apply 220 and 500 grit sandpaper if the aluminum is in bad shape. Finally, you can sand with 1000 grit sandpaper as a finish for your motorcycle wheel.

Step-5: Polishing Wheels Makes Your Motorcycle Look Like Brand New:

Once you are done with cleaning the aluminum rims and spokes of your motorcycle wheels, you can now move to the polishing process. Polishing requires the right equipment to implement your motorcycle wheel polishing. 

  • Mag And Aluminum Polish:

With mag and aluminum polish, you can polish your motorcycle wheels like brand new. Mag and aluminum polish will remove the grime, oil, and brake dust. It will protect your wheels from oxidation. 

  • Scotch Brite And Soap:

With Scotch-Brite and soap, you can wash the aluminum rims and spokes of the wheels. Rub the rim now with mother’s aluminum polish until it gets black. This, the whole rim and spokes will be polished. With a microfiber cloth, you can polish the areas that you have missed out on. 

7 Tips That Can Make Your Motorcycle Wheel Polishing Lifesaver:

If you have a motorcycle, you often have to deal with your motorcycle wheel polishing. The following things would make your polishing experience easy and time-saving. If you are a nob, here are the 7 tips below for you:

Tip-1: Before polishing motorcycle wheels, you need to do away with the dirt and grime from your aluminum motorcycle wheel. You can use aluminum wheel cleaner to get rid of brake dust, grease, and stained oil. 

Tip-2:  With Sandpaper, you need to get rid of oxidation on your motorcycle’s wheel surface. Start with the minimum grit sandpaper then move to a higher number to remove the oxidation if it is needed. But be mindful of the paint on the rim that can come off with sanding. 

Tip-3: Dry the wheels with a rag once it’s cleaned. You should make sure there is no wet area left on the rim. Having a dry surface is a must to polish your motorcycle wheel polishing. 

Tip-4: With turtle wax all-wheel, you can get rid of brake dust if other cleaners don’t work for you. Besides, you can try goo gone for a good result and it is available in the market. 

Tip-5: Aluminum is soft and prone to damage easily. So your aluminum wheels can be scratched. You need to remove the label of the polish to get away from the scratches. 

Tip-6: To clean motorcycle wheels before polishing, a speed master wheel brush can be the best brush to get rid of the brake dust and grime from the motorcycle spokes and rims. 

Tip-7: After washing your motorcycle wheels, you need to towel dry them so that there can’t be any water spots. Wet wheels can hold dust and grime to cause any damage to your motorcycle wheels. 

Things That Need To Be Considered While Polishing Motorcycle Wheels:

The following things you should consider while polishing your motorcycle wheels. Let’s take a look below – 

  • Choose a place that has shade because the sun’s heat can damage your motorcycle wheel’s paint. So you should find a place to polish your motorcycle wheels.
  • Wear safety hand gloves while cleaning and polishing your motorcycle. Because with bare hands, there is a possibility of getting affected by acids and other substances. 
  • You should mask off the painted places on your motorcycle’s wheel so that those painted areas are not scratched while sanding with sandpapers.  
  • Whatever you need to use, you should make sure it goes with your aluminum wheels. 

How Do You Polish Old Motorcycle Rims?

If you have an old motorcycle rim, with never dull wadding polish you can get rid of stained oil, grime, or dirt on your motorcycle rims. With a Scotch Brite, you can polish your old motorcycle rims to look brand new. 

You can polish your motorcycle wheels with metal polish, pinstripes, and a drill. Firstly, you need to take a bit of autosol cream and rub it on the spokes and rims.

Then you can put some autosol in pinstripes and start rubbing the spokes and rims back and forth. Finally, you can use a drill that has a cloth to its tip. Thus you can glitter your old motorcycle wheels.

How Do You Make Polished Wheels Shiny? 

Making your polished motorcycle wheels shiny needs to follow some procedures. Firstly, you need to use any cleaner or detergent, or soap to clean your motorcycle’s aluminum wheels.

Secondly, you can use autosol cream with a rag on the wheels once the wheels are done with the cleaning. Thirdly, you can sand the surface of the aluminum wheels and polish it with 220 grit sandpaper.

Finally, you can polish your motorcycle wheels by applying mag and aluminum polish. Thus, your polished motorcycle wheels will look shinier. If you are interested in knowing more about motorcycle stuff, visit here.

How Do You Polish The Aluminum Wheels Of A Motorcycle?

With a mixture of water and vinegar, you can clean and polish your motorcycle wheel’s surface. After spraying the aluminum surface with water mixed vinegar, dry the surface with a clean soft cloth. 

A mixture of equal amounts of water and vinegar together makes an acid that is super effective for the aluminum wheel surface cleaning of your motorcycle. 

After applying the mix, you need to take a rag to rub the mixture on the wheels. While rubbing cleans the surface of the wheels, they will be shinier. 

What Can You Use To Polish Your Motorcycle Rims? 

There are quite a few ways to polish motorcycle rims out there. Among them, a mag wheel cleaner can help you clean your motorcycle rims. But before polishing motorcycle rims, you need to clean the surface of your wheels first. 

Then you can spray any cleaner over the wheel rims. After spraying the cleaner, you need to sand the surface of the motorcycle wheel. Finally, you can polish your rims with metal polish. If you want to read more about motorcycles, click here.

With metal polish and pinstripe materials and a drill, you can polish your motorcycle rims. You need to put some autosol into the pinstripe and rub the rims with the pinstripe to polish your motorcycle rims. 

How Do You Remove Oxidation From Motorcycle Wheels?

With 220 grit sandpaper, you need to sand your motorcycle wheels to remove the oxidation from them. Sanding with 220 grit won’t damage the surface of the wheels rather it will take off the scratches. 

While removing oxidation from your motorcycle wheels you need to be careful about the paint on the wheels.

 After sanding with 220 grit sandpaper, you can move to higher sandpapers like 500 grit sandpaper to 800 grit sandpaper. Thus you can get rid of the oxidation from your motorcycle wheels. 

How Do You Clean Tarnished Spokes Of Your Motorcycle Wheels?

With water, a cleaner, a bucket of warm water, and a brush, you need to scrub the spokes of your motorcycle wheel to clean. There are other ways to clean your tarnished spokes as well. 

With a mix of soap and water, you need to moisten the rag first. Then rub the fabric rag back and forth on the spokes until they are cleaned.

You can use the microfiber towel to reach the missing areas of the rims. Thus you can get rid of your tarnished spokes.

What’s The Best Polish For Your Aluminum Wheels?

There are quite a few polishes available in the market for your aluminum wheels but among them, you can use metal polish. If it doesn’t work, go for a heavier one for the motorcycle aluminum wheel. 

Those are the days when you may be used to cleaning your motorcycle wheels with detergent or soap but there are some quality products out there today in the market to make cleaning and polishing your aluminum wheels a cinch. 

You must be mindful while purchasing a motorcycle wheel cleaner. Because quality products are always a bit costly whereas poor quality comes with a cheap price can be harmful to your motorcycle aluminum wheels. 

How Do You Remove Scratches From Polished Motorcycle Aluminum Wheels?

With 220 grit sandpaper, you can sand your aluminum wheel’s surface to remove scratches from the polished motorcycle aluminum rims. The sandpaper will make your polished wheel aluminum glittery. 

If there are still scratches left in the aluminum wheels even after sanding with 220 grit sandpaper, you can move to 320 grit sandpaper to higher. Thus you can do away with the scratches. 

Do Your Motorcycle Aluminum Wheels Degrade Over Time?

Motorcycle aluminum wheels are soft. Though aluminum can be oxidized due to oxygen and iron, your aluminum wheels can resist rust. That’s why aluminum-made wheels have been a hot cake in the market. 

Due to being dust-resistant, aluminum wheels become ace in quality. So aluminum wheels don’t degrade over time as it is pretty easy to maintain the cleaning and polishing motorcycle wheels.

How Do You Keep Your Motorcycle Aluminum Wheels From Oxidizing?

Polishing can protect your aluminum wheels as aluminum wheels already have a coating on their surface that protects them from being damaged. Oxidation happens right then when you don’t clean and polish your motorcycle wheels for a long time. 

Oxidation causes brake dust to the spokes, rims, and wheels. So you need to get away from oxidation. So keeping your motorcycle wheels dust and grime free you can polish the aluminum motorcycle wheels to protect your motorcycle from oxidation. 

Does Wheel Wax Work To Clean Motorcycle Wheels Before Polishing Them?

Before polishing your motorcycle wheels, you need to get rid of the brake dust. Wheel wax is one of the best cleaners in the market that you can use to clean the brake dust from your motorcycle wheels.  

All you need to do is take some wheel wax and rub them on the dirty parts of your motorcycle wheel and leave it for a while until they get dried. 

How Do You Make Your Motorcycle Aluminum Wheel Smooth?

Motorcycle aluminum wheels are prone to scratch. So you always need to clean the surface of the wheels to make them smooth. With sandpaper of 160 grit, you can sand the aluminum metal to get rid of the brake dust and grimes from your motorcycle wheels. 

Then you need to clean the surface with a microfiber cloth to do away with the grimes. Thus you can make your motorcycle wheel smooth and glittery.

How Often Do You Have To Polish Your Motorcycle Wheels?

Motorcycle wheels need regular cleaning after every ride but polishing isn’t needed frequently. You can polish your motorcycle wheels thrice a year especially in Summer motorcycle wheels get dirty.

Polishing your motorcycle wheels will make your motorcycle wheels extremely durable and dynamic. But if you don’t clean and polish your motorcycle, the spokes and rims will be damaged by iron and oxygen. 

You can polish your motorcycle wheel twice or thrice a year but you must clean your motorcycle wheels after every long distant ride as cleaning is the key to polishing the motorcycle wheel. 

How Much Does It Cost To Polish A Set Of Wheels?

Polishing a set of wheels costs you $25-$75 if you do it yourself. But it depends on the size and areas that need to be polished. Professionals charge a lot to polish your motorbike wheels. 

To clean your motorcycle wheels by yourself or by experts, you need to purchase the equipment for the polishing process. If you do it yourself (DIY), you can maintain your budget. But the cost depends on the damage.

Final Verdict:

I hope by now you know the process to polish motorcycle wheels. To get more insight on the motorcycle wheels polishing, visit our site.

If you have any questions related to motorcycle wheel polishing, leave us a comment down below. I’ll be glad to get your comment soon. 

Ahsan Ullah

Hi guys, This is Ahsan Ullah. I have been riding motorcycle for more than 15 years. In this long period, I have experienced a lot of things about bike riding. Now I am trying to share my experience with you on this website.

Recent Posts