Updated October 01, 2020 by Gia Vescovi-Chiordi

The 10 Best Aluminum Cleaners

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This wiki has been updated 8 times since it was first published in November of 2018. A highly polished metal can be gorgeous and eye-catching, but allow that same material to become dull and grimy and you've got an eyesore on your hands. Don't worry, any one of these aluminum cleaners will bring back the luster to your car, RV, boat, or household items, making them shine like new again. Just remember that these are chemicals, after all, so you should treat them with caution. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. If you'd like to contribute your own research to the Wiki, please get started by reviewing this introductory video.

1. Flitz BU 03515

2. Simichrome All Metal Tube

3. Chemical Guys Heavy Metal

Editor's Notes

September 25, 2020:

It had been a while since our last update, so we evaluated the market and removed a few of our selections to make way for choices that are better suited to consumer needs or else more effective and versatile. For example, we said goodbye to CarGuys Premium, which is intended only for use on wheels, in favor of Chemical Guys Heavy Metal, a versatile choice that can tackle brake dust and dirt on aluminum wheels in addition to cleaning chrome, diamond plate metalwork, stainless steel exhaust tips, copper radiators, and more.

When Eagle One PVD & Aluminum Bundle became unavailable we took the chance to recommend Bar Keepers Friend Superior, as previously there was nothing on this list to specifically address cookware. And while choices like Met-All Formula No. 1187 can clean metal cookware too, its can and wet, paste-like viscosity make it ill-suited to storing and using in a kitchen. Bar Keepers Friend, however, is a powder that you shake over moistened surfaces. It works quickly, is effective on a range of household appliances, tools, fixtures, and kitchenware, and is much more budget-friendly. It's also a good idea to keep cleaners you use for automotive tasks or items in the garage separated from the ones you'll be using near food to avoid cross-contamination.

Finally, we took off Boat Bling Toon Sauce due to efficacy complaints and brought on Flitz BU 03515, an extremely strong and versatile choice that's great for a slew of surfaces, including brass, copper, silver plate, stainless steel, bronze, gold, painted surfaces, Formica, plexiglass, and more. It's one of those items that's good to have on hand just in case, and thanks to its indefinite shelf life, you won't have to worry about using it up before an expiration date.

Don't forget that these cleaners are potent and should be used with care and caution. Read and follow directions and be sure to use the necessary protective gear if recommended, such as a mask and gloves.

December 06, 2018:

Selected options that work on wheels and rims, like CarGuys Premium and Eagle One PVD & Aluminum Bundle, boats, such as 3M Marine Restorer & Polish, and general household items, as you'll see with Simichrome All Metal Tube and Mothers Mag & Aluminum Polish, since aluminum surfaces are found in many places. Omitted popular Brillo choices; their power-to-price ratio doesn't currently make the cut.

Special Honors

Starke Aluminum Coating When you've worked hard to restore the aluminum on your boat, the last thing you want is for it to degrade again. This coating from Starke Yacht Surface Technologies can help. It uses nano-ceramic technology to provide UV, chemical, and stain resistance while offering multi-year durability and a super high gloss. It also significantly reduces and prevents pitting and corrosion and makes maintenance much easier. starkeyachtcare.com

Wolfgang MetallWerk Aluminum Compound Woebegone aluminum and other bare metals can be a challenge to restore on cars, requiring an intense abrasive polish to remove rust and stains. While complete restoration is a multi-step process, you can get started with this compound from Wolfgang. It's a pre-polish capable of erasing dullness, spots, and discoloration by powering through oxidation to create a uniform finish. Proper application should yield a reflective shine on aluminum trailers, wheels, trim, boats, aircraft, and more. wolfgangcarcare.com

4. Aluminox 1 Gallon Concentrate

5. Mothers Mag & Aluminum Polish

6. Star Brite Ultimate

7. Met-All Formula No. 1187

8. Bar Keepers Friend Superior

9. Quality Chemical Stain Remover

10. 3M Marine Restorer & Polish


Gia Vescovi-Chiordi
Last updated on October 01, 2020 by Gia Vescovi-Chiordi

Born in Arizona, Gia is a writer and autodidact who fled the heat of the desert for California, where she enjoys drinking beer, overanalyzing the minutiae of life, and channeling Rick Steves. After arriving in Los Angeles a decade ago, she quickly nabbed a copywriting job at a major clothing company and derived years of editing and proofreading experience from her tenure there, all while sharpening her skills further with myriad freelance projects. In her spare time, she teaches herself French and Italian, has earned an ESL teaching certificate, traveled extensively throughout Europe and the United States, and unashamedly devours television shows and books. The result of these pursuits is expertise in fashion, travel, beauty, literature, textbooks, and pop culture, in addition to whatever obsession consumes her next.


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