Welcome to Bimmerfest -- The #1 Online Community for BMW related information! Please enjoy the discussion forums below and share your experiences with the 200,000 current, new and past BMW owners. The forums are broken out by car model and into other special interest sections such as BMW European Delivery and a special forum to voice your questions to the many BMW dealers on the site to assist our members!

Please follow the links below to help get you started!

Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > The Best of Bimmerfest! > The Detail Department

The Detail Department
Detailing tips, tricks to keep your bimmer in showroom condition.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 06-21-2004, 09:31 AM
Desertnate's Avatar
Desertnate Desertnate is offline
Spelling Impaired
Location: St Louis
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 5,578
Mein Auto: '10 Mazda3 HB
Question Leather...Read all the threads...few questions

I will have need to start caring for leather on/about July 1, so I am trying to absorb as much as possible. Up to this point I have always had cloth or 'ette equipped cars.

After reading through the threads and all the comments from JohnM and company, the How-to's on Bimmer Care and CarCare Online, and going through the Griots site I only have a few questions.

- On a non-BMW car, how can you tell the type of leather, i.e. classic with the closed pores or open pore leather? Is there a easy visual clue?

- Conditioner vs. Cleaner...Use a conditioner every 3~6 months depending on use/climate and a cleaner as needed right?

- How do you apply conditioner? Rub it in like you are polishing your shoes, or do you just wipe it on and then buff off?

- Any good quickie leather cleaner wipes (I have kids). I have seen the ones from McGuires in local stores...don't trust the ones from Armor-All

- Griots seems to have a good starter kit that is around $30? Is it worth it, or should I just buy a bottle of cleaner and another of conditioner from Lexol and just get it over with?

- If my jeans or other clothes transfer dye to the seats, will it come out pretty easy with a cleaner?

Thanks all...leather interior is a new frontier for me.
__________________
"In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from the responsibility...I welcome it!" - JFK
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
  #2  
Old 06-21-2004, 09:58 AM
Mark_325i's Avatar
Mark_325i Mark_325i is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: New York
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 555
Mein Auto: '03 325i, '88 325iC
I treat the sand leather in my e46 with Griots leather lotion and I like it. I also use the boars hair brush on the seats before I treat them -- it gets the stuff out of the seams nicely. I have not had any dye transfer from my jeans to the seats in the year+ I have had the car.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-21-2004, 10:03 AM
Desertnate's Avatar
Desertnate Desertnate is offline
Spelling Impaired
Location: St Louis
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 5,578
Mein Auto: '10 Mazda3 HB
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark_325i
I treat the sand leather in my e46 with Griots leather lotion and I like it. I also use the boars hair brush on the seats before I treat them -- it gets the stuff out of the seams nicely. I have not had any dye transfer from my jeans to the seats in the year+ I have had the car.
Is the leather lotion a conditioner, cleaner or both? How do you apply it? Rub in like you are polishing shoes or treating a saddle, i.e. hard small circular motions or just a light wiping motion?
__________________
"In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from the responsibility...I welcome it!" - JFK
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-21-2004, 10:38 AM
Artslinger's Avatar
Artslinger Artslinger is offline
BMW + twisty road = fun
Location: Evanston
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 5,886
Mein Auto: Car
I just used Lexol conditioner and cleaner this weekend. It only took me a 45 minutes to do both applications and I clean and condition the leather only twice a year. My car has Montana leather.

I use 100% cotton cloths.

First I use a damp cloth to clean off any lose dirt, I also wipe down the vinyl at the same time. Use the cleaner next and gently scrub the surface making sure to hit the seams. Then use a damp to cloth wipe off the excess cleaner, rinse the cloth frequently. Next step is to apply conditioner, apply only enough to lightly cover the surface let it sit four 5 minutes and wipe off any excess using a dry cloth.

Next I do the Vinylex application this usually takes longer because of all the vinyl pieces used in the interior. Apply enough product to completely cover the surface wait 5 minutes and wipe off excess.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-21-2004, 10:44 AM
Desertnate's Avatar
Desertnate Desertnate is offline
Spelling Impaired
Location: St Louis
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 5,578
Mein Auto: '10 Mazda3 HB
Quote:
Originally Posted by Artslinger
I just used Lexol conditioner and cleaner this weekend. It only took me a 45 minutes to do both applications and I clean and condition the leather only twice a year. My car has Montana leather.
If you only use the conditioner/cleaner on the leather twice a year, what do you do to clean up the leather the rest of the time? A damp cloth?

Since the leather equipped car will the the family taxi, I want to ensure I know how to keep the interior looking good. I can do carpet and vinyl, but the leather has me a bit concerned.
__________________
"In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from the responsibility...I welcome it!" - JFK
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-21-2004, 12:23 PM
Artslinger's Avatar
Artslinger Artslinger is offline
BMW + twisty road = fun
Location: Evanston
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 5,886
Mein Auto: Car
Other than the carpeting from winter salt my interior really doesn't get that dirty. Most of the problem I have with the leather seats are due to leather jackets and my driver side bolster wearing due to entering and exiting the car, conditioners and cleaners will not help with those problems.

Lexol leather conditioner adds oils and preservatives and will not clean leather it mostly helps keep the flexibility of leather and keeps it looking good. I have found that Lexol cleaners will not completely clean stained leather or heavily imbedded dirt.

Companies claim that cleaners and conditioners will not damage the leather but I still like to be safe and use the products as little as possible.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-22-2004, 11:25 AM
TOGWT TOGWT is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: London, England/Florida US
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 903
Mein Auto: Jaguar XKE
~One man’s opinion / observations ~

Q: On a non-BMW car, how can you tell the type of leather, i.e. classic with the closed pores or open pore leather? Is there a easy visual clue?
A: Vinyl-topped Leather: Some leather being used in domestic automobiles has a top veneer of vinyl. This should be considered a vinyl interior and treated with a vinyl dressing. Do not use a leather conditioner on vinyl-topped leather; the conditioning oils cannot penetrate the vinyl coating to reach the leather. Clean and condition only the leather surfaces. If you're not sure if your car's leather is vinyl coated, check with your car dealer or the manufacturer.
Identifying characteristics- this is a man-made fabric of plastic and cloth. You can identify vinyl by its highly uniform grain pattern; the surface will have a slick feel to it. The backside of the vinyl is lined with a cloth/fabric backing. If you have any cracks or cuts, you can see the fabric backing (usually white in colour)

Unfinished leather: Some cars have untreated leather; soft, full grain leather made from an un-split sheepskin, lambskin, or kidskin, usually tanned with alum and chromium salts and dyed throughout. The easiest way to tell is to sprinkle a few drops of water onto the leather, if the water is absorbed into the leather and looks like a stain, it’s untreated if the water is not absorbed then it’s treated.

Clean the surface with 303™ Cleaner & Spot Remover it removes even stubborn stains, including oil, grease, ink, berry juice, wine and blood. It contains no soaps, detergents, phosphates, nitrates, caustics, toxic organics, enzymes or volatile organic chemicals (VOC) Using a soft upholstery brush to raise the ‘nap’ of the skin then apply cleaner by spraying onto a 100% cotton towel (do not saturate) Allow to air dry.

The surface of these leathers has no protective barrier to protect them. As a result these leathers are very prone to soiling and staining. To protect unfinished leathers including suede, deerskin and unfinished dyed leathers, use 303 High Tech Fabric Guard. Use on new or newly cleaned leather, spray on (but do not saturate) and let dry, it creates and maintains water repellence, resists soiling and helps protect against both water and oil based stains.
Identifying characteristics- very soft to the touch, will scratch or scuff very easily; water drops will darken the leather but it returns to its original colour after drying.

Q:Conditioner vs. Cleaner...Use a conditioner every 3~6 months depending on use/climate and a cleaner as needed right?
A: Once every 30-60 days, Arizona, Florida and Texas, especially in summer, for northern climates between 90-120 days, use a leather conditioner to restore these natural oils and keep the leather soft and supple. (Criot’s, Autoglym or Zymol Treat leather cleaners are good maintenance product)

Q: How do you apply conditioner? Rub it in like you are polishing your shoes, or do you just wipe it on and then buff off?
A: Use a Microfiber waffle weave towel, rinse in warm, clean water and wring out as much moisture as possible, fold the towel in half and then half again
The conditioner l will work better if you first warm it in a microwave, and also warm the leather surfaces (in the sun, with a hair dryer or with the vehicles heating system) this allows the oil to permeate deeper
Apply 3-4 ounces onto each of the seats with a light to medium pressure. Ensure complete coverage of surfaces, especially the seams

Q: Any good quickie leather cleaner wipes (I have kids). I have seen the ones from McGuires in local stores...don't trust the ones from Armor-All
A: Groit’s Leather Care Wipes

Q: Griots seems to have a good starter kit that is around $30? Is it worth it, or should I just buy a bottle of cleaner and another of conditioner from Lexol and just get it over with?
A: My preference would be Groit’s as * I * dislike the greasy finish of Lexol

Q: If my jeans or other clothes transfer dye to the seats, will it come out pretty easy with a cleaner?
A: Cleaning- use a soft horse hair brush (Groit’s Leather & Interior Brush) and/or a vacuum to remove any dust, apply a cleaning solution (Water /Woolite or Dreft 6:1 ratio or stronger) on to an applicator pad and apply to one area at a time (i.e. a seat back). Gently agitate the surface with a boar’s hair cleaning brush. This removes stubborn grime and will not harm the leather. Use a clean, damp Microfiber towel to rinse the leather.
Stubborn stains- dependent upon the leathers condition or how dirty it is consider using a leather-cleaning product. (Leatherique’s Prestine Clean or Croit’s Leather Cleaner)


~Hope this helps~

Experience unshared; is knowledge wasted…/ Jon
justadumbarchitect * so I question everything *
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-22-2004, 11:51 AM
Artslinger's Avatar
Artslinger Artslinger is offline
BMW + twisty road = fun
Location: Evanston
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 5,886
Mein Auto: Car
I've used a brush and cleaner and it still will not take out ground in stains especially from black leather jackets... maybe its the cheap ass grey Montana leather.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-22-2004, 12:06 PM
Desertnate's Avatar
Desertnate Desertnate is offline
Spelling Impaired
Location: St Louis
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 5,578
Mein Auto: '10 Mazda3 HB
Quote:
Originally Posted by TOGWT
~One man’s opinion / observations ~



~Hope this helps~

Experience unshared; is knowledge wasted…/ Jon
justadumbarchitect * so I question everything *
Yes it does help...thank you! Some is almost verbatim from what I read at Bimmercare and CarCare Online, but still when put with the other info answered my questions very well.

I want to make sure I start out right with our "new" car from the beginning and not end up with a mess I can't undue later.
__________________
"In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from the responsibility...I welcome it!" - JFK
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > The Best of Bimmerfest! > The Detail Department
Today's Posts Search
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On



Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:32 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
© 2001-2011 performanceIX, Inc. All Rights Reserved .: guidelines .:. privacy .:. terms