Your Suede or Alcantara steering wheel is dirty?

Thats the starting point. But what is that dirt and how to get rid of that? Well first, it’s just grease from your fingers and some general dirt. But how do I get rid of that? Well, I get this question a lot when I am at the track, lets say before and afterwards. Today I am going to shed some light on this well kept secret. No, just kidding. It’s not a secret, it’s just thinking for 5 minutes. 

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So how do we get rid of dirt and grease?

Easy, in a purely “chemical” way. No brushing or rubbing, non of that! All we need is something to remove grease, and something to remove dirt. Done. 

I use a household cleaner like Puracy Multi Surface Cleaner or Simple Green for that purpose and mix it with a mild detergent, liquid of course, like Tide Laundry Detergent or whatever you have or use. And since this mixture would be a tough mass, we need to add water.

DIY Suede & Alcantara Steering Wheel Cleaner

So thats my recipe:
1/3 Cleaner
1/3 Mild Liquid Detergent
1/3 Water

Done! Our super DIY Alcantara Cleaner is ready. 

To get a nice foam out of this mixture, I use a foaming soap dispenser, like this inexpensive dispenser from Amazon. If you don’t have one, you can use a sponge – but only to create foam and apply, don’t rub the alcantara. You also need some terry towels, cheapest one will do, white will be best if you want to see the results. 

Application of the DIY Alcantara & Suede Steering Wheel Cleaner

If you have the wheel installed and don’t have a quick release mechanism, you might want to cover your gauges and other stuff. 

Then you apply the foam onto a soft sponge (not directly onto the wheel) and start massaging the foam into the steering wheel. Again. And Again. Then moisten the first (of many) white cloth slightly and gently wipe the steering wheel. DO NOT RUB! We remove the dirt chemically, not with force!

Pro-Tip: Fold the cloth twice before use. Then you have 8 same size areas to use and each time you see how much dirt is still on it (or not).

Make sure you are not soaking the steering wheel. In case there is still a lot of dirt on the cloth, better wait for a day or two.

Really bad spots can be cleaned with mineral spirits and a rubber nub brush. However, immediately afterwards go over the area with the DIY cleaner. Some Alcantara steering wheels already have hard pustules or nodules. Get rid of these with 600 to 800 sandpaper. But be careful, gently stroke the steering wheel with it.

Hope it works as good as it works for me. Next time I do this, I will add some before and after images! These pictures here are just a placeholder, a nice suede steering wheel I have for sale!

early mint suede Momo Rally 2000 Steering Wheel - Made 1-88

Nice and clean

early mint suede Momo Mod07 Steering Wheel - Made 1-88 - Back

Like new

Niki Lauda & James Hunt

Niki Lauda Steering Wheel Ad