Review: Wheel Woolies

What are Wheel Woolies?

Wheel WooliesWheel Woolies were designed to solve a problem in the car care world: often it can be hard to clean inside your wheels. Some use thin brushes with bristles attached to metal wires, and while these do work, they splatter and can easily scratch up your rims if you’re not careful. The soft, dense, 100% polypropylene bristles on the Wheel Woolies are a safer alternative to its competitors and are fully recyclable (when they’ve outlived their use). They can fit in any size wheel opening and are great for wheel wells, wheel drums, exhaust pipes, and even grilles.

It’s safe to say Wheel Woolies are different, but how well do they work? Take a look…

Wheel Woolie Review

Today we had a chance to put the Wheel Woolies to work. We used their 3-piece detailing kit which contains one large (19″ long, 3″ dia. head), one medium (12″ long, 2″ dia. head) and one small (8″ long, 1″ dia. head) Wheel Woolie. Below we’ll critique how well the synthetic wool removes brake dust, dirt, and grime from your wheels as well as outline some great uses for each of the three sizes. For best use, the manufacturers recommend spraying the wheel with a wheel cleaner, dipping the Wheel Woolie’s head in water, and scrubbing. We did as they said and here’s what we think:

The “Woolie”

As you know, we promote healthy car care. What this means is that we don’t believe in “cleaning by all means necessary.” When it comes to wheels, over-cleaning usually shows its face when you need to use an acid to remove contaminants and brake dust. Obviously this is needed on occasion (just as polishing is for paintwork), but if you regularly protect and care for the surface you should never have to use such caustic cleaning products on your wheels. After using the Wheel Woolies I can confidently say that it’s easier than ever to care for your wheels – you should never have to use an acid again if you pay them the attention they deserve.

Using it:The Woolie itself is soft, pliable, and doesn’t clump up when wet (which is awesome). While cleaning there’s little to no splatter that you’d typically get with a firm-bristled brush, and unlike its commonly used counterpart, we could fit the Wheel Woolie anywhere. Too often with wheel brushes you’ve got to reach your hand all the way into the wheel drum to get stubborn brake dust off, but with the Woolie this was a non-issue. The elongated handle of the 18″ Woolie allowed cleaning even past the rotors… so much so that you could probably clean the other side of the tire with it if you wanted to. But the best part about cleaning inside the wheels was that you feel in control of the Woolie even when you’re holding the base of the handle. It makes for a comfortable and effective wheel detail.

wheel wooliesCleaning power: With how easy the Wheel Woolies are to use, you’d hope their cleaning power can keep up. It certainly does. The added comfort and ease made for a remarkable detail, and the different sizes allowed us to get every last speck of dirt off of even the hardest spots to reach (yes, even that little 2 inch area hidden by the spoke). While using the Woolie you’ll notice that the dense polypropylene fibers really comes in handy; it keeps its form very well and doesn’t require a whole lot of rinsing, although this is partially dependent on how dirty your wheels are. You can successfully remove dirt from the face of your wheels and use the exact same brush to safely remove brake dust from inside your wheels. If you’ve ever used a flag-tipped brush you know there are very few wheels that have gaps large enough for it to clean inside the wheel drums. Even though a lot of what they can remove (brake dust, grime, grease, etc.) depends on what car care products you’re using, we have concluded that there is no other wheel cleaning brush on the market with the kind of power these things allow you to clean with.

Durability: Not much to say here other than that we cleaned five different sets of dirty wheels (20 total) and the Woolies still looked brand spanking new after rinsing.

Versatility: We tested the Wheel Woolies on a variety of wheel finishes. To no surprise, it worked wonders on chrome, anodized, and even matte finished wheels. We also tested the Woolies on a plastic grille, a metal grille, a chromed exhaust, and a set of running boards – all were safely cleaned by this do-it-all wheel cleaning tool.

Woolie Sizes & Uses

Each Woolie has unique advantages, mostly relative to its size. And because the Woolies can be used on almost any surface except for your car’s physical paintwork, we thought we’d show you some spectacular uses for our new little friends:

Large (19″ long with a 3″ diameter head): The large Woolie is best for wheel wells and hard to reach areas inside the wheel. If I had to pick one disadvantage of this size it would be that it doesn’t allow you to clean between intricate spokes (eg. the wheels on this Jaguar XK140), but it certainly does a great job everywhere else. Thankfully they’ve produce two smaller brushes to tackle smaller areas, but in any event, the large Wheel Woolie will almost always be the first of the three you use to clean your wheels.

Medium (12″ long with a 2″ diameter head): With its thinner head and shorter handle, the medium Woolie is the most dynamic of the three. Its big enough to clean the face of your wheels without much effort and small enough to fit in smaller crevices and tighter gaps. Additionally, the 2 inch head is perfect for cleaning your grille and exhaust pipes (although smaller designs may require the 8 inch Woolie).

Wheel WooliesSmall (8″ long with a 1″ diameter head): Although it’s the baby of the family, the 8 inch Woolie packs quite a punch. With the head’s diameter barely wider than my thumb, you can imagine the dozens of uses for this thing. The little Woolie works great not only behind/between spokes, inside your grille, around smaller exhaust pipes, but it’s spectacular for cleaning your engine, too. The little guy fits almost anywhere and is absolutely perfect for cleaning around hoses, plating, and everything else you could never reach with a brush under that hood of yours. If you ask me, that’s the #1 use for this little guy, but as you know by now, the Woolie is amazing for just about anything.

Conclusion

If you couldn’t feel the level of excitement jump throughout the article then I’ll fill you in: we at Dr. Beasley’s LOVE Wheel Woolies. So much so that we’ve decided to carry them in the detailing accessories section of our online store. For safe and effective wheel cleaning there’s simply nothing on the market that even comes close to competing with these bad boys. The durability and versatility of the Woolie is unbelievable for such a soft fiber and it’s cleaning power is tough enough to battle even the strongest brake dust (as long as you’ve got the right cleaning products, of course). I absolutely recommend replacing your current wheel cleaning accessories and giving them a try for yourself. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Have you tried Wheel Woolies before? Found a great use that we missed? Let us know in the comments what you think of them and share your experience with us!