How to Restore Old Car Tires

by David Montoya
Lots old tire-covers, may be used as background image by Roman Sigaev from

Old gray tires can ruin the aesthetic appeal of your car, even after a detail. This lackluster look is the result of too much sun. UV rays break down the rubber over time, resulting in a dull-looking tire that may show a few cracks. While there are several different tire-restoration products, such as sprays and foams, gels work the best at restoring a natural black without the shiny or wet look that other products leave.

Step 1

Clean all four tires with water and soap to remove dirt and debris. Dry off the tires with a clean towel.

Step 2

Apply tire-restoration gel with UV protection directly onto a sponge. Excessive exposure to UV rays causes the rubber to become brittle. This can eventually ruin the integrity of the tire. UV protection will help prevent further damage.

Step 3

Rub on a thin layer of gel with your sponge by working your way around the tire. This will ensure an even application of gel.

Step 4

Add another layer of gel if you want a shiny or glossy appearance to your tires. If not, a single layer will restore the tires' original black (it will have a more matted appearance).

Repeat Steps 1 through 4 at least once a week to maintain a healthy black tire and to keep the rubber protected from harmful UV rays.


  • This project should be done during the evening to prevent direct sunlight and heat from interacting with the tire-restoration gel.
  • Try to keep your car out of direct sunlight when it's parked. Utilize your garage or carport and try to park in shaded areas when you're away from home. This will prolong the lifespan of your tires and help maintain the black surface you just restored.

Items you will need

  • Tire restoration gel with UV protection
  • Sponge
  • Water
  • Soap
  • Towel

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