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Old 04-01-04, 08:52 PM   #1
Guitarman
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Default All about Lexus leather

The basis of this post is to provide the technical information pertaining to the leather in our cars, that has been the subject of much confusion (including some of my own gaps of knowledge on specific Lexus models ) and to educate on it's care. The link here;

http://www.gstautoleather.com/default.asp

is a company that provides Lexus corp. with the hides used in their vehicles. The email I sent asked about uncoated and coated leathers, and what they knew about the Lexus leathers in this regard. Here is the reply I recieved;


Quote:
Hey Guitarman,

The topcoat used for Lexus leathers supplied by GST are polyurethane in nature. We do supply a set of cleaner and conditioners which are distributed through the Lexus dealers with the Lexus brand. Other then mild soap and water to clean the seats the leather should remain in good condition for a long time as is for a long time. For those who want to take extra care the Lexus products we provide work very well.

Obviously what should be avoided is any harsh cleaners especially those containing solvents.

It is true that the uncoated leathers in general require more care but right now Lexus does not use uncoated leathers. There is talk in the future of using semi-aniline (very lightly finished) or aniline (uncoated) in special models but this is speculative.

Best regards, Bob Courter
So, as stated by Robert, all Lexus leathers are coated, albiet with a polyurethane clearcoat.

This should help you all decide your plan of caring for it. The use of Connolly Hide Food etc. and other conditioners designed strictly for UN-coated leathers is up to you. I have no info stating they will do any harm, and many here report softer leather using them, but clearly they are going on COATED Lexus leathers. I say, if it's working for you, keep doing it.
It may well be that those type of conditioners are also beneficial to polyurethane in general, and will also soften it. Just avoid anything harsh or abrasive for *general* care, and no solvents. Cheers.

Last edited by Guitarman; 04-01-04 at 09:01 PM.
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Old 05-02-04, 10:10 AM   #2
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Question

When you mean no solvents does that mean don't use woolite??I myself use woolite dilluted 10/1 and then conditioner with zaino leather in a bottle..please let me know if I'm doing more harm than good...
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Old 05-09-04, 01:23 PM   #3
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Default In the quoted, is "aniline" equal to "anilin"?

Quote:
The topcoat used for Lexus leathers supplied by GST are polyurethane in nature. ... It is true that the uncoated leathers in general require more care but right now Lexus does not use uncoated leathers. There is talk in the future of using semi-aniline (very lightly finished) or aniline (uncoated) in special models but this is speculative.
AFAIK all US LS-430's with the Ultra Lux trim include a leather upgrade package which includes semi-analin or analin leather. For example, a window sticker entry on my 2001 LS-430 states: "Interior Pkg w/Semi Anilin Leather Trim". Is Lexus' use of the term "anilin" the same term as "aniline" in the quotation? If so, that above quote would appear to be wrong at least with respect to US LS-430's with Ultra Lux trim. Can someone who knows more about leathers further elaborate?
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Old 05-09-04, 03:42 PM   #4
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I had read about the LS430s and the use of semi-aniline leather too, on this board. I think the guy that wrote that, Robert, may not be aware of that change, but rather was falling back on info he knew of a few years ago.
That may explain his statement
Quote:
There is talk in the future of using semi-aniline ...etc.
...he may just be a bit behind the current state of affairs with Lexus leathers. Just a guess on my part though.
As far as the spelling goes, I have seen both spellings ( aniline, anilin) referring to the same type of leather, so I don't know if both are correct, or not.
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Old 05-09-04, 03:45 PM   #5
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Default Oh, and Johnee...

Quote:
When you mean no solvents does that mean don't use woolite??I myself use woolite dilluted 10/1 and then conditioner with zaino leather in a bottle..please let me know if I'm doing more harm than good...
No, he doesn't mean Woolite. A solvent is a petroleum based product, i.e. mineral spirits, WD40, brake cleaner, lacquer thinner etc.

Woolite is absolutely safe for your leather.
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Old 05-09-04, 08:54 PM   #6
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Default Re: Oh, and Johnee...

Quote:
Originally posted by Guitarman
No, he doesn't mean Woolite. A solvent is a petroleum based product, i.e. mineral spirits, WD40, brake cleaner, lacquer thinner etc.

Woolite is absolutely safe for your leather.
Like I said before, You the man!! Thanks for clearing that up for me...
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Old 05-11-04, 11:24 AM   #7
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Question

So considering we're cleaning "sealed" leather, what's the best method to clean the leather??
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Old 05-11-04, 11:30 AM   #8
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Wow, great info Dan, thanks!
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Old 05-11-04, 04:06 PM   #9
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Default Thanks Dave

Blanco, since the leather has a polyurethane coating, you can still clean it with any leather cleaner, or the Woolite. You still have to use gentle cleaners, so as not to break down (or dull) the clear coating.

Ostensibly, anything that cleans vinyl or polyvinyl will work, but some of those type cleaners ( Simple Green , Castrol etc.) are much harsher than I would recommend, unless extreme dirt is the issue, and only use them then by first testing in an inconspicuous area.

Stick with Lexol cleaner (or equivalent) , diluted Woolite and you'll be fine.

Last edited by Guitarman; 07-19-04 at 05:49 PM.
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Old 05-27-04, 11:54 AM   #10
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i use some aloe cleaner product is that safe?
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Old 06-01-04, 06:35 PM   #11
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Quote:
i use some aloe cleaner product is that safe?
I think we're gonna need a little more to go on in order to say for sure. What is the products called, and who makes it?
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Old 06-09-04, 10:17 AM   #12
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Do you know how the Zaino leather treatment and cleaners compare with Lexol's?
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Old 06-11-04, 07:00 AM   #13
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Quote:
Do you know how the Zaino leather treatment and cleaners compare with Lexol's?
I've used Zaino's "Leather In A Bottle" ( Z 10) but not the cleaner. The Z10 conditioner dries to a non-shiny patina, looks natural and smells nice. I would rate it as effective as the Lexol conditioner, which I was never crazy about because it felt greasier unless you really buffed off the residue well.

I give the Zaino Z10 an 8 and the Lexol a 7. Both work. That's just my perspective and experience on the 2 products, others may disagree.

I think I'll purchase some of their Z9 leather cleaner and see how that works though. I generally use Woolite

Last edited by Guitarman; 07-19-04 at 05:51 PM.
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Old 06-11-04, 09:09 AM   #14
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Default Woolite Concentration

Hi Dan,

I just purchased an '04 IS300 two weeks ago, and joined
the forum last night.
So far, I am very pleased, happy, and fortunate to have
found such a marvelous forum where Lexus owners
share ideas and knowledge instead of ridicules.

As for the woolite, what concentration do you find
most efficient for the leather?
Also, my car has a mixture of leather and alcantara (suede-like).
I did not purchase the "Magna Shield" protection plan
from the dealer, so I will need a suggestion on what
products to use to protect both the leather and the alcantara.
Any suggestions by you or any other knowledgeable fellow
enthusiasts will be greatly appreciated.

Thank you in advance.

Jonathan
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Old 06-11-04, 09:32 AM   #15
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Jonathan, welcome to CL, congrats on the IS!

You can mix Woolite 6:1 (6 parts water, 1 part Woolite) for general cleaning, and you can go 3:1 for stains and serious dirt if necessary.

I am very familiar with Alcantara, because I see it in a number of modern vehicles in my work. The great thing about it (unlike real suede) is that you can clean it yourself (see link on what to do)

http://www.alcantara.it/istituzional...ne_inglese.pdf

and you should protect it with something like 303 High Tech Fabric Guard, which will be the equivalent of the dealer's "Magna Shield" product.

A good suede brush should also be on your short list to keep it looking good. I use a Woolite dampened white cloth on it when I come across it. You just want to avoid wetting it down completely. Hope this helps, Cheers Jonathan.
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