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I recently bough a '67 that has the original spare (never on the ground) in the trunk. The tire looks like it could use a good cleaning. Since it is an original, I don't want to use anything too harsh, that might affect the 52 year old rubber. It is not a whitewall, so that is not an issue. Also, what would be the best thing to put on it after I clean it? Or should I just buy a tire cover? I really would like to clean it, if safely possible, to "show" what the original tire looked like.
Any suggestions?
 

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i would use dawn dish soap an a cloth towel. then maybe try some armor all but try on the back side just to see what it looks like in case its not right. i wouldn't buy a cover to hide it. an for sure never run it on the road, even 5-10 mph.
 

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Mike - 74 Nova Baltimore, MD
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...and for sure never run it on the road, even 5-10 mph.
I agree 100%.
Tire manufacturers state that you should never drive on a tire that is over 10 years old... no matter how much tread is left on the tire (and this policy is for the modern rubber compounds used in the tires of today).
 

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The ten year rule (some recommend 6 years) seems to apply to "donut" spares as well. This one (not in a Nova) had just passed the ten year mark. I not only replaced it, but I also replaced one of similar age in my wife's car, even though her spare looked OK.

I generally check the air in the spare tire every few months. Seeing the damaged spare was a surprise. Fortunately, I discovered it and replaced it before I needed it.

I'm sure there are many cars on the road with donuts > 10 years old.:confused:
 

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