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Can I Use Pledge on My Car?

Can I Use Pledge on My Car

Did you know that you can use Pledge to wax and shine your car? Although this isn’t the purpose for which the furniture polish is intended.

Those in the know have been using Pledge for years to keep up the appearance of the exterior and interior of their vehicles with no damage to paint or interior finishes.

Pledge contains many of the same petroleum-based elements found in products marketed to keep the inside and outside of your car clean.

While it won’t provide the UV protection that cleaning products designed for the automotive industry will.

It does have conditioning properties that’ll nevertheless bring up the luster of your car’s interior, wheels and paint.

How Pledge is Designed to Be Used

According to the company, Pledge is a pH balanced multisource cleaner spray that gently cleans most hard surfaces.

It removes dust and messes without leaving behind streaks and residue or damaging your surfaces.

Pledge is a plant-based, biodegradable cleaner that doesn’t contain any bleach, ammonia or dyes.

It’s designed to be used to clean all the granite, marble, quartz, chrome, stainless steel, glass, mirrors, plastic, electronics and wood in your home.

The main ingredient is dimethicone or silicon oil. It’s a widely used silicone polymer known for smoothly coating a surface and leaving it protected without being sticky.

It’s the active ingredient that makes Pledge so interesting as a cleaning product that can be extended for automotive use.

Is it a good cleaner?

The company has been around since 1958. My wife and I have used Pledge in and around our house.

While it gets our endorsement, you’ll need to try it yourself to make the best assessment.   

Using Pledge on Your Paint Job

Before researching this topic, I wasn’t aware that Pledge has been used to bring up the luster of paint in car shows for years.

While some people might question the wisdom of using Pledge on the surface of a car. Consider this: the finish on your car is created to withstand wind, rain, snow and sleet.

Not to mention common, accidental spills like gasoline, motor oil, road salt and tar.

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The wood in your house used for accents and furniture typically have inferior finishes. And if you can use it on those surfaces without concern.

Then it stands to reason that your car’s paint won’t be negatively affected by using Pledge on its surface.

Using Pledge or Armor All for the Interior of Your Car

I’ve used Armor All to clean the inside of my cars.

While I do appreciate that it offers UV protection for surfaces like the dashboard. I can’t say I’m a big fan.

Armor All works to make your dash, console and exterior plastics look brand new. Excessive exposure to the sun causes these areas to fade over time.

That’s where Armor All comes in.

The product is safe. Armor All uses water-based silicone emulsions to prevent cracking and other damage.

But sometimes it can produce too much of an unnatural shine to the interior of your car that lasts for weeks.

Pledge on the other hand is considered safe to use on wood, plastics and vinyl.

This is the same materials inside your car.

So, yes. Pledge is just as safe to use on the interior of your car.

Pledge and Leather Surfaces

Leather seats make a car feel more premium and upscale.

But if you don’t maintain those good looks, leather winds up looking run down and tacky.

Leather is prone to wear, wrinkles and cracking. Which is why conditioning your leather is so important.

Pledge is designed to work on hard surfaces rather than soft surfaces like leather seats.

Products like Windex, Pledge and even baby wipes have chemicals that are too harsh for leather seats.

According to CNet some of the best leather cleaners for the interior of your car include Leather Honey, Lexol Conditioner and Cleaner Kit and Chemical Guys Sprayable Leather Cleaner and Conditioner in One.

Surfaces of Your Car Where You Don’t Want to Use Pledge

Along with leather seats, there are other areas where you might not want Pledge to make contact with the interior of your car.

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Let’s say you want to use Pledge to bring up the wooden surfaces on the interior of your car, for example.

While Pledge does a good job of hiding imperfections in wood. It doesn’t actually help treat the wood in any way.

It can leave a waxy buildup.

I would also avoid using Pledge on the glass surfaces in your car as it can leave behind streaks that prove too difficult to eliminate.

But for cleaning the plastic and vinyl in your car, this is where Pledge shines.

I found that a heavy coating works remarkably well for cleaning fingerprints, smudges and water stains off stainless steel.

Pledge On Wheels and Tires

If you don’t like the greasy look of products like Armor All on your tires, give Pledge a shot.

People that have found that it leaves tires looking clean without an overly shiny look.

And it won’t do any damage to the integrity of your tires. Instead, it leaves a mild sheen.

Works great on the rims too. So, don’t be afraid to get some overspray on your wheels.

Here too Pledge leaves behind a mild sheen without your wheels looking overly glossy.

Using Pledge to Clean Your Car’s Windows and Mirrors

Pledge claims that it can be used on multiple surfaces within your house, including glass.

So, it would be reasonable to think that you can use it to clean the windows and mirrors of your car, right?

Not exactly.

While pledge might be good enough to clean the glass on your dining table, using it to clean your windshield and mirrors will leave nasty streaks.

But if you don’t mind doubling up on wiping with a microfiber towel. Then, in a pinch. Pledge can work on your car’s glass surfaces.

Pros of Using Pledge on Your Car

The major benefit of using Pledge to clean the exterior of your car is that it’s a quick way to get a show-worthy shine.

It’s perfect for on-the-spot touch up when you’re not proximal to auto detailing sprays.

You want to start with a clean surface. Then give about two shots of spray to a clean rag and wipe down your car.

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You don’t want too much otherwise you’ll be dealing with wiping off a streaky mess.

As we said before, the beauty of using Pledge for the interior of your car is for the disinfectant properties inside.

It’s good for a quick wipe down of your car’s interior as well as exterior.

You want to follow the same approach as you would for cleaning the outside of your car. You don’t want to spray directly on the surface you’re cleaning.

But the same way a hairs breadth will give the exterior a quick shine. You only need a few puffs to a clean microfiber towel to wipe down interior surfaces.

Cons of Using Pledge on Your Car

While the benefits of using Pledge as a quick detailer to bring up the shine of a vehicle’s paint has been demonstrated at car shows.

It’s a short-term solution.

Meaning that because it doesn’t offer any long-term protection, you shouldn’t expect that shine to last for more than a day or two.

And that’s because Pledge has many of the same chemicals you’ll find in automotive cleaners, waxes, polishes and cleaners like propane, butane and isobutane which tend to evaporate very quickly.

Aside from that, the only real reason to stay away from using Pledge to cleaning the exterior and interior of your car is because it doesn’t have the same UV protection that the products designed for automotive use offer.

Which means that your car will go back to looking dull and lifeless within a day or so.

In the final analysis, Pledge has disinfectant qualities that make it ideal for clean parts of the inside of a car.

But it lacks other useful ingredients that make me stop short of using it to clean every surface of my car’s interior.

Plus, these days we have quick detailers in a bottle that you can easily spray and wipe off.