Hurry! This sale ends in:
AutoGeek Header

Proper Care of Trim & Molding

Proper Care of Trim & Molding

Proper Care of Trim & Molding

In recent years, black plastic trim has become popular among auto manufacturers – think of the Nissan XTerra, the Hummer H2, and the Jeep Wrangler. All these vehicles have two things in common: #1 they have black molding either over the wheels or on the front, or both; #2 they’re rugged, off-roading vehicles that incur more abuse than your average sedan. For these two reasons, you have to apply protectant to these pieces. If you don’t, they’ll turn gray faster than you can say “low resale value”.

This tutorial will make some suggestions on how best to keep your dark trim and moldings looking like new.

Regular Maintenance


Wash the trim and moldings each time you wash your vehicle. On textured pieces, use a Pinnacle Detailing Brush found in the Pinnacle Detailing Brush Kit. For larger pieces of trim, you might find it easier to use the 8 Inch Montana Orginal Boar's Hair Wheel Brush. A brush will allow you to pull contaminants out of the pores of the material. These contaminants may be contributing to the discoloration of the rubber or plastic. Avoid using stiff bristle brushes on smooth black plastic; it will scratch.


If you already have a dressing on the trim and molding, clean it off periodically. Layering dressings will eventually result in discoloration because the outermost layers are not curing to the rubber; they are just sitting on top of old layers. Take a moment to clean off old dressings at least every two months using McKee's 37 Cleanse-All Exterior Cleaner. Spray your microfiber towel. and wipe down the trim pieces to avoid overspray.


Once your vehicle is clean and dried, you need to protect the trim pieces with a quality rubber, vinyl, and plastic protectant. This will help prevent future UV degradation, which is the primary cause of fading. Wolfgang Exterior Trim Sealant and 303 Aerospace Protectant are both exceptional products. They both provide excellent UV protection, but 303 Aerospace Protect is very natural-looking. Wolfgang Exterior Trim Sealant darkens, enhances, and protects plastic and rubber trim. It also protects metal trim and gives it a clear, glossy finish. Use a microfiber applicator pad to spread the protectant over the surface. It will provide an even coat without dripping or running. I apply protectant to my vehicles once a month because the sun is intense in Florida, but once every two months is probably sufficient in most climates. Wolfgang Exterior Trim Sealant

When applying protectant, don’t skip the wiper cowl (the plastic piece at the bottom of the windshield), the mirrors (if applicable), and window and door moldings. Use a detailing swab to apply protectant in tight spaces. Open your doors and apply protectant to the rubber gaskets, too. If they become dry or brittle, they will not effectively keep out air and road noise. Vinylex Quick Wipes by Lexol are a convenient way to protect and preserve rubber gaskets. Just use a pre-moistened wipe to apply a layer of patented protection.

If you have a black plastic license plate frame, it will benefit from a coat of protectant, too.


If your black trim and molding have already faded, there are options to restore them. Black WOW is a clear restorative coating that works on any color exterior trim. It is not a dye! Black WOW is a clear, matte finish trim restorer for all smooth and lightly textured trim.

Another option is BLACKFIRE Total Trim & Tire Sealant. This thick, gel-like formula penetrates deep into the pores of plastic, rubber, and vinyl exterior trim, restoring the finish to factory-new condition. A traditional trim dressing might last a week or two if you’re lucky; BLACKFIRE Total Trim & Tire Sealant provides MONTHS of durable protection. Use it on tires as a long-lasting, waterproof dressing! This polymer-based trim restorer forms a bond at the molecular level, restoring the surface while coating it in a durable, protective shell. BLACKFIRE Total Trim & Tire Sealant doesn’t wash off in the rain – it actually causes water to bead up like a wax!

Forever Black is a black dye for coarse rubber and plastic pieces. The dye contains UV protectants to prevent future fading and its polymer formula ensures lasting color. Forever Black is a permanent dye so use care when applying it. In fact, test it out on an inconspicuous area before applying to all the trim. Keep in mind that it will not be able to absorb evenly into smooth plastic. Forever Black is intended for textured plastics.

BLACKFIRE Total Trim & Tire Sealant restores, protects, and renews all color plastic exterior trimThe Forever Black Bumper & Trim Dye Kit comes with a cleaner and a bottle of dye. The dye has a sponge-tip right on the bottle for easy application. Turn the bottle upside down and press it against something to get the dye flowing. Spread a thin, even coat over the surface and allow it to dry for 20 minutes. No buffing is required. It may take a couple of coats to get the desired shade of black.

If your trim isn’t quite black or you have smooth plastic surfaces, another option is Black WOW Trim Restorer.This is a long-lasting product that significantly darkens the color of the plastic or rubber. It takes very little Black WOW to get great results. Start with a pea-sized amount on a foam applicator and spread it as far as it will go.

Don’t Forget the License Plate Frame

If you have a black plastic license plate frame, it will benefit from a coat of protectant, too. Use a detailing swab or the corner of your microfiber applicator to apply a thin coat. For frames that contain a clear plastic lens, clean and protect it with McKee's 37 Plex-All™ to prevent yellowing.

Qty DETAILING BRUSH KIT- Three detailing brushes  for those who demand the greatest attention to details! Crevice brushes, interior brushDetailing Brush Kit - DK-207
Our Price: $12.99
Sale Price: $10.99
Three brushes for those who demand the greatest attention to details! The detailing experts at Autogeek have ...more
Qty McKee's 37 Cleanse-All Exterior Cleaner works as a bug & tar remover, a wheel cleaner, a tire cleaner, an engine degreaser, a convertible top cleaner, a vinyl & plastic cleaner, and chrome cleaner. McKee's 37 Cleanse-All Exterior Cleaner - MK37-320
Our Price: $12.99
Sale Price: $9.99
Cleans virtually every exterior surface! The exterior of your vehicle is made up of roughly 5 or more different ...more
Qty Pinnacle Vinyl & Rubber Protectant beautifies and protects your car's dash, vinyl seats and door facings against premature aging. 
Pinnacle Vinyl & Rubber Protectant - PIN-360
Our Price: $29.99
The natural solution when fighting heat and ultraviolet exposure. Your car's windows focus heat and ultraviolet ...more
Qty 303 Aerospace Protectant 16 oz 303 Aerospace Protectant 16 oz - 303-30340
Our Price: $12.99
The best protection in the industry for your UV sensitive surfaces 303 Aerospace Protectant! Of all the products ...more
Qty Microfiber Applicator Pads spread car care products evenly & neatly. Microfiber is nonabrasive and safe on clear coat finishes.Microfiber Applicator Pads - MP-100
Our Price: $2.99
This perfect applicator pad is the Pinnacle of smart science! With over 200,000 strands of advanced microfibers ...more
Qty The Forever Black Bumper and Trim Kit is a multipurpose and practical dark surface rejuvenator.6 oz. Forever Black Dye Refill w/ applicator - FBK-060
Our Price: $12.99
Bring back the richness of black trim and molding permanently with this specialized dye from Forever Black, a name ...more
Qty Forever Black restores a dark, black, finish on sun-faded bumpers and body moldings. Forever Black permanently dyes black plastic, rubber and vinyl.Forever Black Bumper & Trim Dye Kit New & Improved! - FBK-010
Our Price: $16.99
Forever Black Tire & Trim Reconditioner is now thicker and easier to apply! The kit now also includes a hand held ...more
Qty BLACK AGAIN - Makes Rubber and vinyl look new! Black Again is a rich 3-in-1 polymer formula that is unmatched in the industry in its ability to clean, renew, and protect all color exterior trim.Black Again Includes FREE Applicator! - BA-4008
Our Price: $9.99
Sale Price: $6.99, 3/$19.99
Includes free foam applicator! The Professional Detailers Formula To Restore, Protect, And Clean Every Color ...more
Qty McKee's 37 Plex-All aerosol plastic cleaner,plastic polish,clear plastic cleaner polish,DP plastic polish,plastic protectant,headlight cleanerMcKee's 37 Plex-All™ Cleaner & Polish for All Clear Plastics - MK37-560
Our Price: $9.99, 2/$14.99
One simple step cleans, polishes, and protects clear plastics. If you've been skeptical about one-step ...more
Qty Black WOW Exterior Trim Restorer, black trim dressing, restore black rubber trim, Mini trimBlack WOW Exterior Trim Restorer Free Bonus! - BW-04
Our Price: $29.99, 2/$49.99
Three FREE Foam Wax Applicators are included, valued at $5.97! Bring back the WOW on colored, smooth trim! Black ...more
Qty Boar's Hair Wheel Brush8 inch Montana Original Boar’s Hair Wheel Brush - MB-1108
Our Price: $29.99
Soft and gentle cleaning naturally! Once you try our Montana Original Boar’s Hair 8 inch Wheel Brush, you’ll ...more
Qty Black WOW trim restorer kit, exterior trim, restore black trimBlack WOW Prepare to be WOWed Kit - 4 oz. - BW-KIT4
Our Price: $60.93
Sale Price: $29.99
Two steps to restore black textured trim! The Black WOW Prepare to be WOWed Kit will take your dull, faded ...more
Qty Wolfgang Exterior Trim Sealant, rubber protectant, metal protectant, exterior trim protectant, exterior trim sealerWolfgang Exterior Trim Sealant 8 oz. - WG-3000
Our Price: $29.99
For a limited time, receive a FREE Poly Foam Applicator with your purchase of Wolfgang Exterior Trim Sealant! ...more
Qty Wolfgang Exterior Trim Sealant, rubber protectant, metal protectant, exterior trim protectant, trim sealerWolfgang Exterior Trim Sealant 16 oz. - WG-3001
Our Price: $49.99
For a limited time, receive a FREE Poly Foam Applicator with your purchase of Wolfgang Exterior Trim Sealant! ...more
Qty Gtechniq C4 Permanent Trim Restorer, rubber trim sealant, trim restorers, gtech c4GTechniq C4 Permanent Trim Restorer 15 ml. - GT-C4-15
Our Price: $39.99
C4 becomes one with your vehicle's trim! Gtechniq C4 Permanent Trim Restorer isn't just a coating. C4 becomes an ...more
Qty BLACKFIRE Total Trim & Tire Sealant, plastic trim restorer, tire coating, long lasting tire shineBLACKFIRE Total Trim & Tire Sealant 4 oz. - BF-270
Our Price: $17.99
Sale Price: $14.99
For a limited time, receive a FREE Poly Foam Applicator with your purchase! Restores, protects, and enhances ...more
Qty BLACKFIRE Total Trim & Tire Sealant, plastic trim restorerBLACKFIRE Total Trim & Tire Sealant 8 oz. - BF-271
Our Price: $29.99
Sale Price: $24.99
For a limited time, receive a FREE Poly Foam Applicator with your purchase! Restores, protects, and enhances ...more

Best Car wax, Auto Care Products, Auto Detailing Supplies,klasse car wax,Meguiars Car Wax,Mothers Car Wax.

Join The Autogeek.net Auto Detailing Forum - Autogeekonline.net