There are several things you need to keep in mind when cleaning your wheel properly.
First off, don't use your soft wheel brush on the wheel wells. Instead, use them on your mags (magnesium rims) or aluminum rims and hubcaps. These parts of your wheel require care when cleaning to avoid getting them scratched or damaged by stiff brushes.
Use a wheel well brush on the wheel well. It's known for its stiffness and ability to thoroughly scrape off all that gunk and hardened mud with ease. With that said, don't use your wheel well brush on the wheel itself. Use the right type of brush on the right part of the wheel assembly.
Soft and Gentle for Wheels and Strong and Sturdy for Wheel Wells
- The Deal with Wheels and Wheel Wells: Wheel wells are hidden out of sight so there isn't as much of an impetus to clean them without scratching their finish since they're more of a functional part of the wheel assembly rather than something aesthetically important. This isn't the case with the wheels, which can serve to complete the overall look and showroom presentation of your vehicle. If you have scratched wheels, that can reduce the value of your car.
- Proper Rinsing of Wheels and Wheel Wells: You should rinse both the wheel and wheel well with equal carefulness and thoroughness. This means hosing down the lug nut holes and in between the spokes so that they both end up spotless and dirtless when all is said and done. Just remember that thorough rinsing doesn't imply high-pressure hose-downs. Free-flowing water is enough in order to clean your wheels thoroughly and carefully.
- Dry Your Wheels Always to Avoid Water Stains: Don't leave your wheels wet even if it's supposedly made of stainless steel (which can get stained or corroded after enough damage is done to it anyway). Wherever water spots appear, they mar the look of anything they touch. This includes wheels, by the way. You should get an all-purpose microfiber towel in order to gently yet completely dry off your wheels before water stains can form.
- As Per Usual, Remove Residual Brake Dust: Most of the brake dust is removed when you wash your wheels, first by hosing it down, then by applying KevianClean Wheel Cleaner on it, then by rinsing and wiping the wheel down. During the wipe-down, you should use a black microfiber towel in order to grab hold of any residual brake dust. The black coloring of the towel allows you to easily see the dust as it's wiped by the cloth. Only use this towel on your wheels to avoid cross-contamination.