PDA

View Full Version : leather care - how often to condition???



supercharged
Jun 14th, 2004, 05:13 AM
How often should leather be conditioned???cleaned???I condition mine(I have a 2000 Acura TL with light color leather) every week and I clean it once a month. Then someone has told me that using too much conditioning chemicals is bad for leather. So how often to condition? Clean?
I have tried all Meguiars auto care products for leather, mostly use Spray Gold Class Leather cleaner/conditioner. Will frequest cleaning conditioning damage leather in ANY way?
Which is the BEST product to use?:confused:

Mike Phillips
Jun 14th, 2004, 05:32 AM
Hi SuperCharged,

You ask some good questions. Off hand, I would think that as long as there are no ingredients in the product that are harmful to the surface, then you should be able to use the product often without any negative side effects.

I'll look into this and see what else I can find out.

Mike

6318
Jun 14th, 2004, 05:57 AM
I never condition without cleaning...

Mike Phillips
Jun 14th, 2004, 07:55 AM
If your seats are clean, and you want to use Meguiar’s best leather conditioning product, then the product you want to use is

Gold Class Rich Leather Aloe Conditioner (http://www.meguiars.com/store_meguiars/product_detail.cfm?sku=G-111)
http://archive.meguiarsonline.com/gallery/data/500/2AloeConditioner.gif

As far as how often can a product be applied safely? A product like the Gold Class Rich Leather Aloe Conditioner can be applied often with no negative effects as can all Meguiar’s leather products. It's a good idea to use a gentle cleaner once in a while before applying a conditioner to insure any dirt build up is removed so that you don't coat over it with your conditioner. This would be especially true of the most used areas such as the drivers seat.

For best results, it's a good idea to apply a lotion style leather conditioner, (and even a leather cleaner), by applying it to a clean foam applicator or terry cloth towel and then working it in. Remove any excess using a second, clean terry cloth towel.

Hope this helps...

Mike

LusterMeister
Jun 14th, 2004, 03:45 PM
Hey supercharged, I too have an Acura (2003 TL-S) and I would imagine the leather is the same as on your car. Mine is a black interior. I've read that Acuras have - coated leather - which means a conditioner won't penetrate the leather, so in reality one is not "conditioning" the leather at all.

Can anyone comment on this.

Mike Phillips
Jun 14th, 2004, 04:22 PM
Originally posted by LusterMeister
I've read that Acuras have - coated leather - which means a conditioner won't penetrate the leather, so in reality one is not "conditioning" the leather at all.

Can anyone comment on this.

I spoke with our Director of Training just this morning about coatings used on leather, we talked about these coatings and how they effect maintenance.

Before I post anything more about the coatings themselves, please allow me some time to do some research first and then post back my findings.

That said, I can assure you that our chemist take into consideration that some leather is coated. For this reason, I trust that Meguiar's leather products are formulated for such coatings.

My own common sense and experience tells me that when I apply a Meguair's leather product onto a leather surface, it always looks better than before I applied it. Also, I tend to be in the camp of applying products thoroughly, and then if need, re-wipe the area to insure there is no excess product sitting on the top. Each weekend, I have a chance to demonstrate Meguiar's Leather treatment products and I an assure you that what I see with my eyes are products that are indeed penetrating past the coating and conditioning the leather.

Give me some time to do some research and see what I can find out. As the owner of a new Honda Pilot with Corinthian leather, I am also interested in this topic.

Mike

LusterMeister
Jun 14th, 2004, 04:42 PM
Thanks Mike. I look forward to your report. In the meantime I think I'll pay a visit to my local Pep's and grab some Aloe Conditioner and give it a try.

PS: great forum. It's nice to be back. A lot of great discussion and helpful advice.

supercharged
Jun 14th, 2004, 10:50 PM
Thanks, Mike...Basicly, I want my leather to look best and not to be wearing out. I know that on my TL leather is not the best quality leather interiors could be, so a little additional conditioning would be helpful. I have compared some leather interiors on Lexus cars, used years 95-96 different models of passenger cars, and this is what I've got. ES basicly gets very simple quality leather - which means those used models 95-96 drivers seats very worn(I'm talking about those non-erasable black markings). GS interior leather looked higher quality which leather seemed in a very good condition. LS was the best leather. The models I looked through leather looked like new. I looked through a few of each models and this tells me something. I don't really that that only GS's and LS's were conditioned. But keeping my leather in a perfect condition - that's what I want. The toughest one is the driver's seat of course.
So basicly since those cleaners/conditioners are PH balanced, they shouldn't be harmful then?

CJ Majesty
Jun 16th, 2004, 06:18 AM
I was concerned about this coating also. My mother has a 02 TL Type S black on black, & her leather looks like if you just wiped over it with a wet rag it'll be a good as new. It looks just a little dusty. It has NEVER been touched (cleaned with leather cleaner or conditioning).
I had a RS X Type s blk on blk & For nine months never cleaned the leather. & it looked perfect when I traded it in.

Now I know a guy that details for Acura. & he has a bk on blk rsx & his is kind of peeling a little bit like that guys black Corvette you (Mike Phillips) did with the tan leather die on it. He said he cleans & conditions it once every couple of months.

My neigbor has a volvo with tan leather He said DONT EVER USE ANY leather cleaner or conditioner I think he said he tried a few I remember hearing LEXOL. & it stripped it down where it stated to crack & peel. He said use a very mild mix of Mild soap & water (he stressed MILD).

I have a TSX & one problem Im noticing it my leather gets shinny real fast only the seats that are sat in, he back seats are still perfect nobody sits back there. But even on the floor model cars I noticed in the Acura dealer I noticed that the TSX's leather got like that really fast from people getting in & out. It looses that dull look.

My car is two & a half months old. I use Griots garage interior cleaner (http://www.griotsgarage.com/catalog.jsp?&SKU=11104) & it works fine. I actually clean everything inside my car with it. Except the navigation screen. I got a little hair spray bottle & mixed it 50/50 with water because I find its too sticky at 100%.

I have never owned a car with leather for more than one year. But from what I see people who do not clean there leather have less problems with it cracking & peeling. It just gets faded, & discolored.
I feel I should wait until the leather looks like it needs conditioning.
Does this sound like a bad idea.

TOGWT
Jun 16th, 2004, 11:00 AM
~One man’s opinion / observations ~

Mike I'm not trying to prempt your reply/findinds but this is my understanding. As always If anybody has hints, tips, or corrections to the above procedure, I’m always anxious to improve my technique.

Coated Leather: leather made from natural hides, but uniquely treated with a light pigmented urethane resin coating to make it more suitable for automotive seating. It retains the softness of natural top-grain leather but resists fading in direct sunlight. Spills wipe off with a moist cloth, retains the aura of natural leather without its sensitivity to light and abuse. The urethane resin coating requires oils to stop it from drying out (just like a paint system’s clear coat) coated leather and its vinyl can be cleaned with a leather cleaner, but do not clean leather with a cleaner formulated for vinyl.

Identifying characteristics- uniform colour and grain patterns; will not scratch easily; water drops will not change colour.

~Hope this helps~

Experience unshared; is knowledge wasted…/ Jon
justadumbarchitect * so I question everything *

supercharged
Jun 17th, 2004, 05:30 AM
I have a co-worker that has a problem with his leather interior. He has a 2002 Honda Accord coupe, and he told me that he had been using "dealer's leather cleaning and conditioning products", he does not remember which brand name that was, but his car now is 2,5 years old and his leather cracked. :wall: Cleaning and conditioning was done on weekly basis, and that's what he ended up with.:bounce . I do perfectly understand that it does depends on chemicals being used in cleaner and conditioner, so I want to know about Meguiar's products for myself, and for each product individually, if possible, please. :bow . I'm pretty sure that nobody will want a crack in their leather because of overcleaning or overconditioning and with hot California sun leather might even get "cooked". You only chose wheather with or without a BBQ sause.:LOLOL: So, any recomendations???:confused:

TOGWT
Jun 17th, 2004, 08:22 AM
~One man’s opinion / observations ~

These are the products I use/recommend but I’m sure Megs have products that are the ‘as equal’ Most detailers I’ve spoken to dislike the greasy finish of Lexol others like it, each to his/her own…

Leather cleaning / conditioning is a three step process, comprising; Cleaning, Conditioning and UV radiation protection

1. Cleaning- use a soft horse hair brush (Groit’s Leather & Interior Brush) 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)

2. Maintenance- recommend a preventative maintenance routine three to four times a year, once prior to the winter season to prevent cold temperatures cracking the leather, and once before the heat of the summer to prevent deterioration and shrinkage by heat, which result in continued cracking of leather. In addition to regular cleaning, leather requires replacement of natural oils; Collagen-based products restore the lost moisture and maintain it’s natural flexibility. The smell of leather comes from oils evaporating out of the hide. 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)

3. UVR Protection- you should consider additional sunscreen protection (especially if you own a convertible) Leather conditioners typically do not offer any UV screening. The best solution is to alternate between a leather conditioner and a UVR Protectant. One month use a conditioner to keep the leather healthy and supple. On alternate months mist and wipe the leather with a UV protectant. After application allow 60 minutes for product to cure, then using a 100% cotton cloth lightly buff surface.

~Hope this helps~

Experience unshared; is knowledge wasted…/ Jon
justadumbarchitect * so I question everything *

Mike Phillips
Jun 17th, 2004, 09:54 AM
Wow!

Ask and you shall receive, look at all the information, interest and comments pouring in.

Because the Meguiar's Award (http://meguiars.com/award/award_tickets.cfm), a lot of people have been very busy behind the scenes getting ready for this event.

So I'll try to post some information back here on Friday.

Thanks,

Mike

supercharged
Jun 17th, 2004, 09:31 PM
I checked with him today, and it appeared that he was using Lexol Cleaner and Lexol Neatsfoot leather dressing.:( . He should of been using conditioner, but he did not.:wall: . I looked at it myself today, a very small crack in a place where leather is least likely to crack ( must of been a knife damage or something), but his leather defenetely felt like it needed conditioner.

supercharged
Jun 21st, 2004, 04:02 AM
Any updates, Mike?

bigjason
Aug 10th, 2004, 01:59 PM
Originally posted by supercharged
I checked with him today, and it appeared that he was using Lexol Cleaner and Lexol Neatsfoot leather dressing.:( . He should of been using conditioner, but he did not.:wall: . I looked at it myself today, a very small crack in a place where leather is least likely to crack ( must of been a knife damage or something), but his leather defenetely felt like it needed conditioner.

I use Lexol cleaner and conditoner and don't see any problem with them. I reada lot of good report for Lexol lether products, I am surprised that people here seems to don't like Lexol. This is a product which is specially in leather and has a logn history, I will still trust them. My 04 Accord has been 1 year old now and the leather still smell good.

Mike Phillips
Aug 10th, 2004, 05:28 PM
Originally posted by supercharged
Any updates, Mike?

No, it got burried in a pile of e-mail and never recovered. I was told someone sent me some informaton, but I never recieved it and then I never followed up.

I'll send an e-mail right now.

Mike

Nebor
Aug 18th, 2004, 05:34 PM
I believe all leather needs to be conditioned, and occasionally cleaned. Leather was a living thing, it dries out over time. I've owned several Volvos with very nice leather seats, and taking care of them is key. If you don't keep them conditioned, the edges of the driver and passenger seats will wear quickly.

CJ, if your neighbor had ever taken the time to look at his Volvo owner's manual, he would see a Volvo part number for Volvo leather conditioner.

6318
Aug 19th, 2004, 05:25 AM
So, what are you guys using for UVR protection?
I live on the gulf coast...and use Lexol cleaner/conditioner and 303 alternating every two weeks...

TOGWT
Aug 19th, 2004, 06:58 AM
Forum Answer Blank




Quote: I have a 300 SL Gullwing that I have owned since 1973 and used it strictly as a show car. In order to have it properly prepared, part of the regimen was to make certain that the seats were nice and supple and looking "pretty" and I used Lexol. After about 10 years of usage of the Lexol, I noticed that the seat stitching was starting to fray. I called a re-upholsterer who did nothing but autos to look at what I thought to be a minor problem.

His inspection was very quick and to the point. He told me that Lexol was wonderful for the leather but the alcohol in it was destroying the stitching to the point where it was too far gone and the seats would either have to be replaced or re-done. Being the Master that he was he was able to re-stitch both seats and replaced the threads. It was amazing as to how fragile the stitching was; to the point that you could snap it without any effort.

Even though all is fine the price tag to get it repaired was high and the effort to get it done right was more than I would ever want to do again.

There you go, I responded and didn't shed a tear. lkirchner Aug 10 2004


~ One man’s opinion / observations ~

Maintenance: Conditioning- recommend a preventative maintenance routine three to four times a year, once prior to the winter season to prevent cold temperatures cracking the leather, and once before the heat of the summer to prevent deterioration and shrinkage by heat, which result in continued cracking of leather.

In addition to regular cleaning, leather requires replacement of natural oils; Collagen-based products restore the lost moisture and maintain it's natural flexibility. The smell of leather comes from oils evaporating out of the hide.

Schedule: 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.


~Hope this helps ~



Knowledge unshared is experience wasted
justadumbarchitect / so I question everything/ Jon

6318
Aug 20th, 2004, 05:03 AM
TOGWT, curse you!!
what do I use if I can't use Lexol!!!

Tim Lingor
Aug 20th, 2004, 05:48 AM
Hey,

One of the best leather cleaner/conditioner I have ever used is the new Detailer Series Leather Cleanr & Conditioner ( D-18001). It leaves the leather with a clean, non-greasy and VERY supple feeling! :xyxthumbs

Tim

TOGWT
Aug 20th, 2004, 07:26 AM
Quote: TOGWT, curse you!! what do I use if I can't use Lexol!!!


~ One man’s opinion / observations ~

And all I tried to do was help! (LOL);)