How to Remove Scratches From Hubcaps

by Richard Ristow
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Kraig Scarbinsky/Digital Vision/Getty Images

When not tended to, hubcaps can look unsightly. Grime gathers and discolors caps, and scratches can happen. Removing the scratches is fairly easy, and you can clean and polish the hubcaps at the same time. However, how to remove the scratches depends on how deep they are. Still, tending to the caps is relatively easy, and the job can take anywhere from 10 minutes to half an hour.

Step 1

Assess the severity of the scratches. You can do this by running your fingernail over the scratch to gauge it.

Step 2

Dot the hubcap with plastic cleaner. Squeeze a little from the tube at a time. Place some on the scratched area, as well as the rest of the of the hubcap.

Step 3

Dampen a sponge, and spread the plastic cleaner over the hubcap in small circular motions.

Step 4

Apply pressure to the scratched areas, until the scratches are gone.

Step 5

Wipe the hubcap down with a microfiber towel. Continue to use circular motions, until the polish is removed, and the hubcap looks buffed.

Step 6

Reexamine the scratched area. If the scratches are there, you will need more than plastic cleaner/polish.

Step 7

Soak a fine-grit piece of automotive sandpaper in a glass of water, and wait about ten minutes. The grit level will depend on the severity of the scratch, but it should be above 600. This is essentially the same process as removing scratches from a headlight.

Step 8

Scrub the scratches with the wet sandpaper until the scratches are gone. If the scratch is deep, follow up with a finer grit of sandpaper, 1000 grit or more. This will also have to be soaked. Once finished, remove the excess grit with a microfiber towel.

Step 9

Reapply the plastic cleaner, and buff the hubcap again.

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