racer_ace
racer_ace New Reader
8/6/08 9:26 p.m.

What is the best way to safely clean the plastic and vinyl interior pieces on a 20 year old RX-7? What type of cleaners are gentle on the brittle old materials but still effective?

What plastic / vinyl protectant should I use on the interior after I clean it? I stopped using Armor All (low shine) in my '02 EP3 Si's interior because I read somewhere that Armor All will actually break down plastics over time. But, the RX-7 bits need a little refresh...so I am not sure what to do.

Thanks for your advice.

-Ray

mattmacklind
mattmacklind SuperDork
8/6/08 9:52 p.m.

Well, you'll get a lot of answers to this because everyone likes a different "look", and some cleaners give a wet or shiny look many don't like and it sounds like yo don't want. I like to use Meguiar's NXT plastic polish or whatever its called, its in a green spray bottle, on my 71 BGT and my 84 Benz. It leaves a shinier look but you can modify this with how much product you use. I've never heard of Armour All breaking down plastic over time. Another very popular product for an older car is 303 Aerospace Protectant. I have some and haven't used it yet, but it gets great reviews from what I've read. Black Magic makes a nice product, but is way too shiny for me so will definitely be for you. Might be a good idea to hit up a parts store with a decent detailing isle and browse. Simple Green is a general cleaner that seems to work well with all sorts of materials, I use it on leather and vinyl seating with a soft scrub brush. Let us know what you find that you like.

skruffy
skruffy Dork
8/6/08 9:55 p.m.

warm soapy water always worked for me.

P71
P71 Reader
8/6/08 11:19 p.m.

Armor All has and will break down plastics. The "wet" look is also disgusting IMO. (Not to mention the slimey grease! UGH!)

To clean you mix 1 part Original Woolite with 5 parts water in a spray bottle. Spray and wipe with a nice cloth. A stiff bristle brush will help with upholstery and an old toothbrush is great for things like air vents. Use SOFT paper towels and Windex for the clear plastic gauge housing and mirrors and windows. The Woolite leaves a very nice satin look, like a new car that's never been touched.

For dressing and/or protection use 303 Aerospace Protectant. Pricey, but WELL worth it IMO. I tend to use it only on dash tops, steering wheels, shifters, and other high-wear areas. It's slightly glossier then Woolite, but nowhere near Armor All.

amg_rx7
amg_rx7 New Reader
8/6/08 11:23 p.m.
P71 wrote: Armor All has and will break down plastics. The "wet" look is also disgusting IMO. (Not to mention the slimey grease! UGH!) To clean you mix 1 part Original Woolite with 5 parts water in a spray bottle. Spray and wipe with a nice cloth. A stiff bristle brush will help with upholstery and an old toothbrush is great for things like air vents. Use SOFT paper towels and Windex for the clear plastic gauge housing and mirrors and windows. The Woolite leaves a very nice satin look, like a new car that's never been touched. For dressing and/or protection use 303 Aerospace Protectant. Pricey, but WELL worth it IMO. I tend to use it only on dash tops, steering wheels, shifters, and other high-wear areas. It's slightly glossier then Woolite, but nowhere near Armor All.

That is more or less how I cleaned the interior of my 93 RX7. Used some soap and water and all purpose cleaner diluted in water on the more soiled bits. Scrubbed the dirt out our of the dash and panels using a soft tooth brush and other soft brushes. Worked in small 4" x 4" patches. Dried each spot with a soft clean towel before moving onto the next.

Xceler8x
Xceler8x Reader
8/7/08 8:27 a.m.

diluted simple green. Your car will smell like a hospital when you're done...if you're cleaning out vomit from a bachelor party the night before as well.

Jensenman
Jensenman SuperDork
8/7/08 10:57 a.m.

Yes Armor All will most certainly screw up vinyl parts. I completely ruined an MGB dash that way. I refuse to use it on anything. Everything in my cars gets wiped down with a wet cloth and then dried- when I take the time, that is. I view a heavy dust coating as a UV reflectant.

InigoMontoya
InigoMontoya New Reader
8/9/08 9:39 p.m.

Ahh, detailing, this one I can help.

I currently use Prima Nero on both my New legacy gt and on the wife's 97 miata.

http://www.amazon.com/Prima-Nero-Rubber-Plastic-Dressing/dp/B000KMB408

Works great since there is there is none of the 'shine' that you get from the normal off the shelf products but still provides UV protection. It smells faintly of bananas going on, but that fades fairly quickly and is really quite nice, not overpowering. On my car is is really nice and flat, on the miata is is a bit shinier, but nothing like the armor all clones.

Our Preferred Partners
hX8ApMdr6wgWy9hbjx8sVrFWQ2BBYrhM