my job is reconditioning textiles and plastics, the majority being pre-owned automotive for dealers. Today I encountered the most disgusting steering wheel in my 20+ years of this. 2014 Silverado with around 45-50k on it. Otherwise a clean truck with exception of the drivers area.

some areas of filth are thicker than paint, took roughly 20-25 minutes just to get it stripped (normally less than 5 to clean a wheel for prep) I’ve never seen an airbag have that much caked on...most of the grain above the bowtie is thick layer of filth as is the bottom corner. I had to scrape the buttons with a small metal tool as it was too thick to get all of it wet making it take too long to scrub normally.


underneath some of it was worn leather, when the top coat wears you start to wear the actual leather which starts to go suede.

A little filler to make it smooth again. The top had some of this too.


Finished wheel.

Driver seat was filthy too, this photo doesn’t show how bad it was. My extractor is broken to so I had to manually scrub it for what seemed like 2 days.


As I said, this may be the grossest thing I can remember seeing in a used car during my career. Every car for dealers I work on has always gone through detail first so I miss the awful stuff and clean what they can’t...seems lately I do more cleaning than I should need too.

I imagine the guy that owned this thing was a professional shit thrower who didn’t wash his hands. The rest of the truck aside from the drivers area was pretty much unused, bed was in good condition so not a work truck. Gross, I’d have been embarrassed for anyone to see I did that. The manager said they wanted him to replace the wheel in the recon dept.