Q:

How do I soften car window rubber?

A:

Quick Answer

To restore and maintain the rubber seals around car windows, Guide To Detailing recommends washing these seals with water and car soap using a gentle brush, then treating the seals with a water-based vinyl and rubber dressing compound. Car soap and vinyl dressing compound are available at most automotive supply stores.

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Full Answer

Guide To Detailing refers to the rubber trim around car windows, doors, hoods, trunks, lights and bumpers as rubber seals. The function of these seals is to protect the car from dirt, water and wind, as well as to improve the overall look of the vehicle. To keep the rubber seals in prime condition, Guide To Detailing recommends cleaning all rubber seals with car soap and water twice a year. Window seals require more frequent washings due to their exposure to direct sunlight. After washing the seals, the water-based rubber dressing is applied to the compound, then soaked for five to 15 minutes before wiping seals with a clean cloth. An extra step suggested by car manufacturers such as BMW and Porsche is to follow up the rubber dressing with talcum powder. A small amount of talc on an old, clean t-shirt wiped across freshly treated rubber seals provides extra lubrication.

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