Badly Oxidized and Faded Aluminum Window Trim

It can be restored but it takes a special power tool and hard work

This is one problem that has plagued anyone who owns and loves old Mercedes Benz. Short of replacing the trim, the solution has been evasive for some and near impossible for others. Over the years I have tried every metal polish and rubbing compound I could get my hands on (I estimate over 30 different products) to try to remove the oxidation and bring back some shine in the trim. Many of you reading this have tried too and can feel my pain. For many years I decided I would just have to live with it.

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Problem & Solution

Common among these chassis:


This all changed recently while restoring my 1986 Silver 300SDL. The paint and interior are absolutely beautiful.  I replaced the grill, headlights, tail light lens, etc to make the car look like new. But it had a very bad case of oxidized trim.  I mean real bad (i.e. heavy spotting)! I figured I would have to find another long body 126 sedan with good trim and replace it all. What a job! But the more I looked at 126 sedans the more I began to realize they ALL have oxidized trim (unless of course it is a rare low mileage garage queen). So in August of 2012 I set out on the quest to rid the world of this malady.  And I am learning the problem goes way beyond just old Mercedes. Many European cars less than ten years old are already showing signs of oxidation on their anodized trim……

After a month of testing a number of new treatment and coating procedures, I must say there are no miracle cures to this problem. But, it is possible (in most cases) to bring the shine and brightness back to aluminum trim work. 

Here is a shot of my 300SDL during restoration of the trim.  The trim on the left is untouched.  The one on the right looked exactly the same before I went to work on it.  Wow, my method really does work... even surprised me. :-)


It is hard work and will require time and energy on your part. The average aged trim on a 116, 123 or 126 chassis could take anywhere from 3 to 5 hours to restore depending on how bad the oxidation.  If the oxidation is slight or the trim is only lightly faded, this time could be cut in half. Without the aid of a power tool it is way too labor intensive and in some cases near impossible to get the shine back.

The restoration kit we offer includes everything you will need except a multi-purpose electric power tool. You will receive complete instructions along with the advantage of Kent's countless hours of trial and error to find the right tools and polishes to do the job!

The process works just as well on bronze anodized trim that has become faded.  I went to work on my 1990 Mercedes 190E to bring back the shine in the bronze trim. Look at the before and after pictures.  The oxidation was only slight and the whole process took me 45 minutes start to finish (including cleanup)

Before picture showing spotting in the anodized coating:







A complete kit is available for immediate shipment. You will need to have a multi-purpose power tool which can be purchased at almost any hardware store. Be sure to watch Kent's video explaining the development process of this kit.