Jewel, we have always used an outside source for the annual or semi annual washing of our trailers. It is roughly $50 to $100 bucks, but they have the ability to use low pressure "Acid" solutions, and then an immediate high pressure clean water rinse just after the acid, inside the horse compartment and outside on the trailer. This results in the oxidation and streaks being removed, while also removing the road grime and bugs. In between times, I use a good "car wash" soap like Blue Coral brand and starting on top of the trailer, I scrub the heck out of it. If you havent looked up on top lately, you will notice that this is the source of all the streaks coming down the sides. It is nasty up there. Also, you have to rinse the soap suds off before they dry, because everything on a trailer wants to streak if you dont.
Once a year I go to a truck wash in Murfreesboro, just off of I-24, and they do an acid wash on my four horse w/ LQ trailer, inside and out. I've recently heard that Wallace Trailers, next to the Ag Center, offers the same. The acid wash gets all of the streaks off and "brightens" up the aluminum to make it look shiny new. I have been cautioned to limit the amount of acid washes because it can have some negative long term effects, like dulling. In between my annual acid washes I have a car detail guy (Maximum Car Wash - 615 480-5596) who goes to my farm and cleans it inside and out for $200; they do a great job!
Wallace Trailers does detailing too (Wallace Trailer Sales, 615 256-2458).
Since I live in East TN, I think they have a big rig place near Knoxville. Another question do you remove the mats in the trailer or leave them? My trailer is an Exiss and it really needs a good shining. Thanks for the replies.
You are always supposed to remove the mats when you wash the inside...and let the floor and the mats completely dry before reinstalling them. If moisture is trapped under them it will start to cause corrosion problems on the aluminum floor.
I use a product from StreakMaster called Aluminum Brightener and Ultra Guard. It works really well, but it is a lot of work, and if you can afford to have someone else acid wash your trailer I think that is the best way to go. If not, check out the StreakMaster web site and give Greg a call. He can answer all your questions about using the products.
Oh, I just saw you are saying your trailer is white..if it is aluminum skin painted, then you don't want to acid wash the painted part, that is only for the aluminum finish parts. Streakmaster sells a product called Black Streak Remover that is supposed to be really good for removing the black streaks. You can find posts on horse trailer world forum from folks who have tried it.
To the replies that use the acid wash. How often can you acid wash your trailer? Is there any damage long term that you know of? I have been wanting to acid wash my trailer but have hesitated until it really needs it due to the unsureness of it all.
I wash my trailer each time I come in and the Blue Corral works great with the black streaks but the shine is starting to fade on the alum.