How to Remove Wax from Plastic Trim

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You’ve pulled out all the stops to wash and wax your car and now your car’s paint is shining like new; however, you forgot to be mindful of your plastic trim.
When wax dries on plastic trim, it creates a white haze that is as hard on the eyes as it is hard to remove. That being said, waxing your car should be a catch-22! If you remember to cover your plastic trim while you wax, you can achieve an optimal paint shine and an equally lustrous black trim.
However, if it’s already too late, and you’ve applied car wax with your black trim exposed, fret not! Here’s how to remove wax from your vehicle’s trim.

Spray-on wax remover

Spray-on wax removers are concocted to dissolve wax trapped on plastic trim. It is easy to apply and maneuver into hard-to-reach spots. You can purchase wax remover at most general retailers, automotive stores, and online. A popular brand is McKee’s Wax Remover, which comes with a long-handled nylon brush to help loosen and remove the wax build-up.

Rubbing alcohol

Not only is rubbing alcohol an inexpensive way to remove wax from black trim, you probably already have it on hand. Simply dip a soft cloth or old toothbrush in the alcohol and scrub it onto the area with the build-up. Once the spot comes clean, wipe with a damp clean cloth. If the plastic surface has dulled a bit, use a protectant like ArmorAll Extreme Shield to restore the shine.

Pencil eraser

Is your child’s pencil case laying around somewhere? Using a pencil eraser is a surprisingly effective way to get your plastic trim clean. A pencil eraser is a great way to access hard-to-reach areas or you can purchase a larger rubber school eraser. Simply rub the area in circular motions and the old wax will fall off in crumbs.

Mr. Clean Magic Eraser

Mr. Clean Magic Erasers are made of melamine resin foam, which creates a mild abrasive safe for many surfaces when combined with water. Magic Erasers are perfect for clearing up wax buildup in little to no time. For the best results, only use the Magic Eraser on your car’s trim. It could potentially damage your clear coat or car paint.

Protecting your trim

If you don’t get wax on your trim, you won’t need to clean it off. Before waxing, remember to tape off the areas you want to shield from the wax application. Painter’s tape will do the trick and it will also easily peel off after the new wax has been applied.

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