Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar? - Chevy Colorado & GMC Canyon

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Old 05-24-2008, 07:55 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar?

The individual who owned my truck before me smoked in it. While the dealer did an awesome job at removing the smell and much of the residue, there is still some tar on the plastic surfaces. I already wiped the steering wheel with windex and a microfiber towel (which turned my nice clean towel brown) but there is still some on there. At least the steering wheel is not sticky anymore!

What do you guys use to remove tar buildup which will not harm plastic surfaces? Again, I am not after it for the smell (I am hoping the smell is out for good from the dealer) but rather the cleanliness aspect of it all (plus that, I like my trucks to always look new!)!

Thanks!
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Old 05-25-2008, 09:27 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar?

DP total interior cleaner that stuff works great you can find it at autogeek.net and other great detailing stuff.
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Old 05-26-2008, 10:16 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar?

Simple Green?
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Old 05-27-2008, 05:54 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar?

OxyClean mixed into a spray bottle with water.
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Old 05-27-2008, 07:17 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar?

try Blue Magic... it can be found at Wal Mart in the auto section and I use it for my whole interior
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Old 05-27-2008, 08:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar?

Thanks for the recommendations! I do have simple green and OxyClean so I will give those a try first (neither of which I thought of at the time). I also have a few small stains which I need to remove with the OxyClean first.

If they don't put a dent in the tar I will go with the Blue Magic or something other. I expect Simple Green to get the job done. That stuff usually works great under the hood (for engine bay cleaning) and leaves a nice smell afterwards.

Like I said, the cab HARDLY smells it is just sticky from the tar on the plastic surfaces. The dealer did a good job at getting the smell out of the fabrics. Not even the seats reek of smoke! The biggest issue is the little silver dollar-sized circle of burn holes on the drivers seat, where the ashes from the cigarettes fell between the guys lap and burned through the fabric on the seats.
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Old 05-28-2008, 02:32 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar?

What always amazes me about these posts is how nasty people can get their vehicles to look and smell on the inside just by smoking in them. I smoke, and have always smoked in my truck and never had problems with the odor, and definately never had a brown residue on the interior. These guys must roll up the windows and smoke carton after carton... ****, just roll down the windows and hang your cigarette outside the vehicle and it won't stink... I know this isn't helping you with your post, but I just think it's crazy how people can mess up a vehicle so bad from smoking in it. And for all the fellow smokers out there, just don't smoke without your windows down, try and hang your cig out the window, and keep dryer sheets under your seats and you shouldn't have any problems:)
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Old 05-28-2008, 08:49 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar?

I read about the dryer sheet thing Jova. Its not the smell that I am trying to rid of it is just the sticky tar on my surfaces. For example, before I cleaned the steering wheel, if you rubbed your finger on it it would be all sticky and brown (and smell like smoke). I got most of it off (I haven't gotten a chance to detail the whole truck yet), but there is still some left on there.

And as far as the smoking thing goes. Here is a little story. I was looking at this decent Colorado at a nearby dealer. The thing literally had 10K on it (it was previously a lease). Pulled up to see the thing and it was JUST about to be sent to detailing. I figured I would have a look at it anyway. Opened the door and the interior looked half-decent for not being detailed. THEN I opened the glove box. FIVE cartons of empty cigarette boxes fell out from the inside. I was surprised the interior did not smell more! I mean, it was not detailed yet and I am usually sensitive to that musty-smoke smell!

Long story short, I think some people do hammer out cartons while they drive!
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Old 05-28-2008, 01:14 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar?

I've cleaned rental property before and we found that ammonia works extremely well to remove tar & nicotine.You can spray it on and watch the brown just run off. Might want to dilute it a little with water and try it on a small area first.(if the other sugestions don't work) Hope this helps.
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Old 05-29-2008, 01:30 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Best cleaner to remove cigarette tar?

Macronyx: Five cartons? ****, you would think that if someone was trading their truck in, that they would clean something like that up... Some people amaze me:)
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