Best heavy-duty cleaning wipes 2018

Which of ten packs of heavy-duty cleaning wipes leaves your car looking the best?

Keeping a pack of moist wipes handy is one of the easiest ways to maintain reasonable cleanliness. It makes sense, too. Statistics show we spend on average nearly three-and-a-half years of our lives at the wheel. But some wipes offer better performance, durability and value than others. So we put ten packs of heavy-duty wipes to the test.

How we tested them

We challenged an array of wipes over a mix of paint (car door), plastic (matt and gloss) and fabric (carpet and upholstery) surfaces. Grease, chocolate and biro were introduced to give a typical everyday environment, then we considered the effort required to shift them, and the finish the wipes left behind. Also considered was price, from a range of sources as we went to press. 

Verdict

All our products impressed, and the best performer was the Grime Boss, but Wonder Wipes served up the strongest blend of performance and price. 

  1. 1. Everbuild Wonder Wipes WIPE80
  2. 2. Grime Boss Heavy Duty Hand Wipes
  3. 3. Big Wipes Heavy-Duty Wipes

Reviews

Everbuild Wonder Wipes WIPE80

Price: Around £7.50 Contact: www.everbuild.co.ukRating: ★★★★★

The Wonder Wipes had no textured surface like their nearest rivals, and that slowed them down. This was most noticeable on the paint drying test, where we had to work harder to get deep down due to the lack of abrasion. Overall, they performed well across our tests, although when cleaning the door panel, there was just the slightest hint of greasiness left behind.

They’re cut somewhere between the Grime Boss and Big Wipes’ Heavy-Duty and were noticeably lighter. This meant they tended not to soak up so much dirt and grease, but the big price advantage they had over their main rivals here meant you could double up occasionally and still come out on top. 

Grime Boss Heavy Duty Hand Wipes

Price: Around £5Contact: www.grimeboss.co.ukRating: ★★★★☆

It’s a pity the Grime Boss wipes aren’t available in bigger tubs, and weren’t anti-bacterial. The wipes were larger, heavier and wetter than the others, the textured side ripping out grime as the smooth side soaked it up. They beat rivals in all tests bar one; sometimes one wipe did two tests. But once the paint began to dry, we had to scrub to get it all off.

Big Wipes Heavy-Duty

Price: Around £7 Contact: www.saxon-shop.comRating: ★★★★☆

Like the Grime Boss, each wipe had a textured and a smooth side; they just weren’t as large or heavy, so the texture was worked harder on the ingrained dirt. The blue, lemon-scented wipes were strong on grease, oil and Waxoyl, if not quite up to the best, but matched the Wonder Wipes at getting off the drying paint. Price was the biggest drawback.

CarPlan Upholstery Wipes

Price: Around £1.50Contact: www.carplan.co.uk Rating: ★★★★☆

A previous test winner, these CarPlan wipes are really effective on upholstery and carpet, shifting grime and biro with ease. They made light work of our ground-in chocolate. Unfortunately, they’re not a one-stop solution, and lose a star as a result. The wider CarPlan range includes dash, screen and leather wipes to suit your requirements. Even so, these Upholstery Wipes are top value, and also come in a convenient cup-holder-sized tub (around £3).

Big Wipes Multi-Purpose Wipes

Price: Around £10Contact: www.bigwipes.co.uk Rating: ★★★★☆

Changes to the Big Wipes line-up mean Interior Wipes are now known as Multi-Purpose Wipes, but they retain their four-star rating. They’re versatile and deliver on their promise to be “tough on grime, food, drinks and stains”. Biro needed more effort to shift, though. As with all Big Wipes, they’re also dermatologically tested. The 40-wipe plastic tub is a bit chunky, but is well designed with a stopper, so you don’t need to fiddle to find the next clean-smelling wipe. 

Armor All All-round Wipes

Price: Around £3Contact: www.armorall.eu Rating: ★★★☆☆

The resealable lid of this 30-wipe value tub is good in concept, but proves a bit fiddly. Although they can be used on their own, the wipes are actually intended to act as part of a two-step process, with gloss wipes – sold separately – as a follow-up to leave your interior sparkling. They struggled to shift the grease on fabrics, but worked brilliantly on sticky marks and grime on plastic surfaces. The car polish smell is pleasant enough, albeit not quite as nice as the fresh linen fragrance of the CarPlan wipes.

Simoniz Matt Dash Wipes

Price: Around £2Contact: www.holtsauto.com Rating: ★★★☆☆

These Simoniz wipes may be slightly more expensive than the cheapest rivals, but are perhaps worth a punt given that they come with a money-back guarantee. They weren’t able to completely shift the biro and merely smeared the ink before making it faint. However, they managed to lift the grime and grease without any issues and left an excellent smear-free finish, plus a new smell to boot. These are a fair investment if there’s no other choice on the shelf. Yet they’re limited as they can’t be applied to fabric – for that you need Simoniz Upholstery Wipes.

Tesco Dashboard Wipes

Price: Around £1.50Contact: www.tesco.com Rating: ★★☆☆☆

Claimed antibacterial properties make these Tesco wipes a cheap solution for cleaning up after sticky fingers and wiping down surfaces touched by tiny tots. The instructions say it’s best to leave the cleaning solution for five minutes, but doing so didn’t seem to bring about any improvement in performance. They also made chocolate stains worse and needed some serious elbow grease on biro across the plastic surfaces we tried. Finally, we weren’t impressed by unsightly watermarks left behind after drying, either. 

Simoniz Upholstery Wipes

Price: Around £2.50Contact: www.holtsauto.comRating: ★★☆☆☆

These Simoniz Upholstery Wipes foam to work more quickly on spills and stains. They come in a 20-pack resealable sachet with strong glue to keep the pack sealed and the wipes moist. Two wipes is all it took to give a chocolate-free finish on the fabric, although there was a greasy mark the next day after drying. They didn’t perform that well on grime, although they got the job done. Biro and ink proved a doddle to shift, but the foam leaves a mild stickiness behind and the new car fragrance is a little bit weak. 

Turtle Wax Cockpit Wipes

Price: Around £3.50Contact: www.turtlewax.co.uk Rating: ★★☆☆☆

Turtle Wax’s Cockpit Wipes were decidedly disappointing. The lemon smell was pleasant enough and they were able to shift the worst of our self-inflicted grime without too much elbow grease. However, the wipes’ gloss properties seem to prevent the solution having any effect on ink, grease or stickiness. This was in contradiction to the pack’s claim that they “instantly clean”. In order to get the gloss finish, you ideally need to buff with a microfibre cloth afterwards. And all that for a price that’s somewhere in the middle of the pack in our test.

Most Popular

New 2021 Vauxhall Astra teased for the first time
Vauxhall Astra teaser 1
Vauxhall Astra

New 2021 Vauxhall Astra teased for the first time

The new Vauxhall Astra will get electrified powertrains and a more premium image
8 Jun 2021
‘Our switch to electric will soon make driving manual cars a lost art'
Gearknob
Opinion

‘Our switch to electric will soon make driving manual cars a lost art'

Want to drive a manual car? You need to take your test in a manual car. So what happens once all driving-school cars are automatic EVs?
8 Jun 2021
'The hydrogen underdog disruptor is back in town'
Toyota Mirai opinion
Opinion

'The hydrogen underdog disruptor is back in town'

Mike Rutherford says hydrogen-powered cars could still be a frequent sight on UK roads
13 Jun 2021
New 2021 Tesla Model S Plaid launched with 1,006bhp
Tesla Model S facelift - front
Tesla Model S

New 2021 Tesla Model S Plaid launched with 1,006bhp

Range-topping version of the Tesla Model S officially unveiled, with a sprint time of 0-60mph in less than two seconds
10 Jun 2021
'Factories are at a standstill because they can’t get the parts to finish cars'
Car manufacturing
Opinion

'Factories are at a standstill because they can’t get the parts to finish cars'

Steve Fowler points out the fresh issues facing global car manufacturing
9 Jun 2021
New 2021 Volkswagen T7 Multivan replaces Caravelle
Volkswagen T7 Multivan - front
Volkswagen Caravelle

New 2021 Volkswagen T7 Multivan replaces Caravelle

The Volkswagen T7 Multivan MPV switches to the MQB platform and adds plug-in hybrid technology
10 Jun 2021
Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport vs Cupra Leon 300
Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport vs Cupra Leon 300
Car group tests

Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport vs Cupra Leon 300

The capable Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport goes up against its new Cupra Leon 300 sibling in this hot hatch battle
12 Jun 2021
New 2021 Lexus NX arrives with firm’s first plug-in hybrid drivetrain
Lexus NX - front action
Lexus NX SUV

New 2021 Lexus NX arrives with firm’s first plug-in hybrid drivetrain

The new Lexus NX 350h features a standard hybrid set-up, while the NX 450h+ gets a plug-in hybrid powertrain capable of 40 miles of pure electric powe…
12 Jun 2021
LEC launches affordable EV conversion for classic Mini
LEC MINI Electric
MINI

LEC launches affordable EV conversion for classic Mini

The conversion sees the Mini’s A-Series engine replaced with a dinky electric motor and a 20kWh battery for a range of 70 miles in the city
10 Jun 2021
Audi updates line-up for 2022 with new tech and trim features
Audi S5
Audi

Audi updates line-up for 2022 with new tech and trim features

Almost every car in Audi’s line-up has received a tweak, with major updates including Amazon Alexa integration and a Sonos stereo
11 Jun 2021
New Skoda Enyaq iV 2021 review
Skoda Enyaq iV 80 Sportline - front
Skoda Enyaq

New Skoda Enyaq iV 2021 review

The new Skoda Enyaq iV is the Czech firm’s first bespoke electric car and we've tested the full range on UK roads
10 Jun 2021
New Porsche Macan facelift prototype review
Porsche Macan prototype - front
Porsche Macan

New Porsche Macan facelift prototype review

We get behind the wheel of a prototype version of the facelifted Porsche Macan SUV
13 Jun 2021
'GM taking over Honda would be a disaster'
Honda opinion
Opinion

'GM taking over Honda would be a disaster'

Mike Rutherford is worried about Honda's future, despite its recent motorsport success
6 Jun 2021
Mustang Mach-E: your next company car?
A red Ford Mustang Mach-E parked
Advertisement Feature

Mustang Mach-E: your next company car?

Thinking of getting a new company car? Here’s why you should consider putting the Mustang Mach-E on your shortlist
11 Jun 2021