Last evening, I prepared the Robert’s for Saturday’s ride, a day trip to Galiano Island, a hilly, 75 km adventure a short ferry boat ride away.
You know the routine. I washed it down. Thoroughly cleaned and lubed the drivetrain. Applied Pledge to the frame to restore a polished looking lustre. Checked the bolts, cables, brakes and deraileurs. When I stepped back, I noticed the tires, despite being washed with soap and water, looked dirty. A light brown film was on the tire walls. Fine dust and dirt from the streets. It would not wash off completely. I tried again with a scrub brush but with the same result.
My other tires do not look like this. Perhaps it is the compound or quality of the tire. Maybe the compound is more porous. I don’t know and willI investigate more carefully.
Then I remembered using a car tire cleaning product on an old set of tires one time. An all purpose vinyl and rubber cleaner from Armour All. I pulled the spray can out, applied it to a clean cloth and wiped the tires with it. Voila. New tires. It was amazing. The tires have the same sheen as the frame. They look better than new. The brown film is gone.
I am not certain how the product will stand up or, if it will affect performance in any way, but I certainly do not mind doing this occasionally when my tires look tired.