The technique of electroplating a thin layer of chromium onto a metal object is generally called chrome, chrome plating, or chromium plating. This chromed layer can provide corrosion resistance, easy cleaning procedures, increase surface hardness, and most importantly it looks stunning.

On a brand-new vehicle, chrome can look stunning, shiny, and much fancier than normal cars. But after some time especially if you are buying a used car, it can become pitted, dirty, and start rusting. When this happens, either we can ignore it and leave it looking all muddled or we can clean it. The cleaning process is very easy, quick, and quite cheap and won't take any fancy cleaning products for the same purpose. Some little effort can polish the chrome of the car.

What are the tools and parts required to clean car chrome?

A trip to an auto parts store can be time taking. Don't spend the time waiting for a package or driving to and from the store. The tools needed for home remedy are:-

  • Dish soap
  • Sponge/microfiber
  • Water hose
  • Vinegar
  • Aluminum foil
  • Bowl/small bucket
  • Mineral oil

What is the process of cleaning car chrome?

Step 1:- Mix the water and dish soap and scrub

With the help of a sponge/towel, apply soap water thoroughly to clean the chrome. The main aim is to remove all the debris and stains caused by road grime and other conditions. Wipe and clean the chrome and then rinse to remove the leftover soap and grime.

Step 2:- To penetrate and clean tough stains use vinegar

We can come across the spots on the chrome which appear darker or stained. These tough areas need some extra effort to remove the grease and vinegar can help to attain this goal. To do this, make a 1:1 solution of vinegar and water; use a sponge/towel dipped in this solution and apply on the troubled spot. Then rinse and dry that area.

Step 3:- Scan for rust

After cleaning the chrome and removing any discoloration and stains from it; take time to thoroughly check the chrome for rust and other damages. This can be done easily while drying the car chrome.

Step 4:- With the help of foil, scrub the rust

Cut small squares around 3 to 4 inches of aluminum foil to remove the rust. Now fill a bowl and with water; dip a piece of foil in it and use it to lightly scrub the chrome. Only a little friction is required to produce aluminum oxide to dissolve and remove rust so don't dig in or rub hard. If someone sees pitting or rust-related damages, instead of a piece of foil use the foil ball to scrub the area gently. The rough edges will help to scrub the pitted areas.

Step 5:- Final step is to rinse, dry, and polish the chrome

Once scrubbing from aluminum foil is done, rinse the area with a water hose. Double check for leftover foil scrub and other debris and wash them thoroughly. Dry the chrome thoroughly; if it is left to dry on its own, then it will leave water spots and discoloration of the chrome.

Safety measures

Safety comes first whether doing cleaning in garages or at home. Wear gloves to ensure that the skin remains unblemished, even if we are using non-toxic cleaning products. In the same way, wear eye protection also. Because we will scrape away rust and small pieces of metal, therefore it is important to wear eye protection to prevent these from getting into the eyes. First of all, work in small areas because we don't know how the metal will react with the cleaner and we also don't know our skill level in this job. Thus working on small areas will help in preventing big mistakes.