Bumpers, Tyres & Trim — All You Need to Know

If you take pride in your car, you want to make it shine from top to bottom – and the first thing you probably focus on is the paintwork.

But while cleaning and waxing your car will keep it protected and looking like new, neglecting your tyres and trim could let down the appearance of your whole car and impact its resale value.

Tyres, plastic bumpers and trim have a tendency to fade from shiny black to dull grey over time – something which can make even the newest cars appear ten years older. The sun’s UV rays can bleach the plastic and diminish the rich, black colour of your car’s tyres and trim, while scuffs and scratches can make them look old and damaged.

For this reason, it’s worth spending some time on your tyres and bumpers to make your car look as good as new. Restoring tyres and plastic materials to their just-bought best is surprisingly easy, provided you have the right tools for the job.

In this guide, we’ll show you how to restore tyres, plastic bumpers and other faded trim around your car, so that every aspect of your car continues to look its best for longer.

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Tyre and Plastic Bumper Restoration – What You’ll Need

Using car shampoo on bumpers and tyres will clean them, but it won’t tackle the other problems you face, like fading and oxidisation. You need to be using dedicated tyre and bumper products as well, which are specially developed for the surfaces.

Look for products that offer protection rather than just restoring the look of bumpers and tyres, otherwise they will get damaged again quickly and you’ll just have to keep working on them. A good protective product should give you long-lasting results and a shiny finish.

Using standard car shampoo will clean tyres and plastics, but once they’ve dried, you’ll find that they’ve gone back to looking tired and faded. Dedicated tyre and trim restorers have added conditioners that restore materials to their original colour, as well as protecting them from UV rays and oxidisation in the future.

At Simoniz, we offer two products for restoring tyres and plastic trim, including a quickshine detailer spray and our original Back to Black Tyre & Trim, which is an aerosol spray. Both products offer rapid grease and grime removal while also providing that wet-look shine – ideal for those who take pride in the finer details of their car.

How to Restore the Colour and Shine of Car Tyres

The look and finish of your tyres can make a big difference to your car’s overall appearance. Over time, UV rays, oxidisation and salt from the road can mean that the natural shine of the rubber starts to fade, making the tyres look tired and out of place on your shiny, just-washed car.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. With the right products and a little extra work after washing your car, you can restore your tyres to their natural best. Here’s how it’s done.

Back to Black Tyres in Two Easy Steps

Step 1: Clean and Dry the Wheels

Before applying any restorative products, it’s important to make sure the tyre is completely clean, particularly on the sidewall where the product will be applied. If you want to clean your alloys while you’re working on your wheels, use a specialist alloy cleaner. Simoniz Ultracare doesn’t corrode your alloys even if they’re scuffed, so you can use it even on old wheels. Spray it on first and let it soak in for a few minutes.

Using a pressure washer (or hose if you don’t have access to one), give the tyres a good blast, making sure to get right under the wheel arch to remove dirt and debris. If you want your wheels to look their showroom best, it’s also a good idea to use a wire brush to remove brake dust and other dirt from the alloys themselves.

Once you’re happy the wheels are completely clean, dry them with a microfibre cloth or chamois, or else wait for them to dry naturally.

Step 2: Apply A Tyre Care Product

We recommend Simoniz Back to Black Tyre & Trim, or alternatively Back to Black Wet Look Tyre & Trim depending on the kind of finish you want. Back to Black Tyre Shine comes in handy, thanks to its easy-to-use aerosol spray, which provides even coverage.

When you’re applying the Tyre Shine, hold the container around 15cm from the tyre and spray in slow, smooth strokes. The product will get to work instantly, and there’s no need to rub it in. Simply leave it to dry, and the deep black finish of your tyres will be restored, with long-lasting results and a durable finish.

Tyre Rain

How to Restore Bumpers and Plastic Trim

Do you have plastic bumpers or trim on your car’s exterior? If so, there’s a good chance such surfaces might be starting to look tired.

Few modern cars have plastic bumpers and trim, but those that do can suffer from fading. UV is a big cause of this, as is oxidisation – a colour-sapping process that happens naturally when plastic surfaces react to air.

Faded plastics might not sound like a big problem, but as with tyres, they can ruin your car’s overall appearance after it’s been cleaned, polished, and waxed. Thankfully, there is a solution, as we set out below.

Step 1: Wash & Dry the Car 

Start by giving the car a good clean using high-quality car shampoo. This will remove any dirt, debris and grease from bumpers and trim, ensuring a clean, smooth surface on which to work. Once you’re happy the car is completely clean from boot to bonnet, dry it off with a soft microfibre cloth or chamois.

Step 2: Remove Surface Oxidisation

Before applying any products, you’ll need to remove any and all oxidisation from your car’s plastic trim. Oxidisation leaves plastic surfaces looking faded and white, so it’s important to remove it for the best results.

To remove oxidisation, scour the plastic with a piece of wire wool in a circular motion, taking care not to touch the paintwork. Any oxidisation should lift off easily, leaving the plastic smooth and ready for you to treat it. 

Step 3: Apply a Bumper or Trim Care Product

Unlike some bumper restorers, which come in pourable liquid form, Simoniz Back to Black Tyre & Trim is a spray product – making for simple and easy application. The easy-to-use spray means you won’t need an applicator cloth, and can apply the formula exactly where it’s needed without worrying about staining other areas of the car.

Making sure the plastic trim is clean, dry, and free from oxidisation, hold the can 10cm away and begin spraying in a fluid motion, taking care to cover every inch of the surface. Once done, the product will get to work instantly, with no further action required — how easy is that?

Once you’ve covered all your car’s plastic trims, and the product has dried thoroughly, you’ll be left with bumpers that look shiny and new. And, thanks to the long-lasting level of protection offered by Back to Black, you won’t need to worry about your bumpers fading for the foreseeable future.


Simoniz has a heritage of protective shine, and our products are guaranteed to make it easy for you to keep your car looking its best. To find out more, or browse our complete product range, visit the Simoniz website.

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