If there is one thing you can do to improve the look of your car, it is to wash it often. When you wash your car, you remove loose dirt and road film from the top of the paint. That means more than just giving them a good bath. You need shampoo and a sponge or wash mitt to scrub it.
Even the mildest soaps can take away the protection from your car’s paint, causing it to rust (paint starvation). Using detergents on your car can make the finish wear off even faster. For a long time, BMW, Jaguar, Mercedes-Benz, Ferrari, and many other high-end car makers said that you should only wash your car with pure water.
Shampoos made today that are good enough to wash cars are very gentle on paint, plastic, and rubber. A good car wash shampoo has conditioners that keep the shine and lubricants that keep the car from getting scratched. Make sure you choose a good product that won’t hurt your efforts to clean your car.
To wash a car right, you need more than just a good shampoo. You also need a lot of different tools. I like to use brushes to clean places, like between body panels that are hard to get to. I also like to use brushes on the lower body panels, where grease and tar from the road tend to build up. Make sure that your brushes can be used with paint.
What is the equipment required for a car wash?
Isn’t a towel just a towel? This is wrong, unfortunately. If your house was like mine, your mom put the old bath towels in the garage to clean the car and the dog. Mom didn’t know that the backs of most bath towels are made of a mix of polyester and cotton. A polyester thread is also used to sew the towel’s edges together.
Polyester is stronger than steel pound for pound. This is great if you want your bath towels to last a long time, but it’s not so great for your car’s paint. Polyester gets scuffed. Use only towels made of 100% cotton. They won’t last as long, but you can feel safe with them.
Your choice of tools to wash with is also important. You should find a wash tool that is easy for you to use, but you should also think about a few things. First, your tool for washing should be able to hold a lot of soapy water. The more it holds, the more soapy water you can use to wash your car. This is important for keeping things smooth.
Soapy water acts as a lubricant, which keeps dirt from scratching the paint. Also, look for a tool that is easy to clean. If dirt and grit are hard to get off, it’s not safe. I like washing tools with a lot of fibers, like a lamb’s wool mitt or a cotton chenille-covered sponge.
For drying, you might need more than one tool. The chamois, which is made of sheepskin, has been used as a towel for hundreds of years. When wet, this leather, which is soft by nature, soaks up a lot of water and is safe. Chamois, which is made from nothing but plants, is still a great choice, and the number of synthetic chamois is growing.
Chamois have one flaw: they don’t fit very well into cracks and crevices. For this, you’ll need a towel that can soak up water.
There are paint-safe squeegees that will quickly remove 80% of the water from your car with just a few strokes if you like to dry things quickly. Add a good towel to finish, and you’re done.
The Water Blade and a Miracle Towel are my favorite things to use together (microfiber towel). The Water Blade moves very quickly, and the Miracle Towel quickly dries all surfaces without leaving streaks or lint.
How do I wash my car and make it shiny?
Here are some tips that will make it easier to wash a car and make them shiny:
1. Start by washing the tires and wheels.
If you wash the car’s body first, the water will dry and leave spots before you finish washing the tires and wheels. Do not wash the paint of your car with the same water you use to wash the tires and wheels. Get rid of it and fill up your bucket again.
2. Let your car cool down.
Whenever you can, work in the shade. When the wash and rinse water evaporates too quickly from a hot surface, water spots are more likely to appear. One trick is to park slightly uphill. This makes it easier for the water to run off moldings, trim, and places where water can’t reach. Start by giving the car’s finish a good spray of water to get rid of loose grit and dirt on the surface.
3. Use shampoo for washing cars that were made just for that purpose.
Look for a shampoo with conditioners for the surface of your hair. Surface conditioners act as lubricants that help sand, and other rough particles slide off in the rinse water without scratching the paint. If you have a dark-colored car, you should spend a little more on good car shampoo (dark cars show every little scratch).
4. I like to wash with a chenille wash pad or a sheepskin wash mitt.
These tools have a lot of small filaments that pull dirt and grime away from the surface being cleaned and into their own structure. Synthetic sponges and washcloths with flat sides can collect dirt, grit, and grime, which can harm the paint of your automobile. If you use a natural sea sponge, wash with the soft side on the outside instead of the cut side, which is harder. Rinse new sponges well to get rid of any sand or shell pieces. Wash mitts and pads made of 100% cotton chenille are also great because they hold a lot of soapy water and are gentle on your paint.
5. Wash the car from the top down and give it a lot of rinses.
Especially if you are using a wash with natural oils, you should rinse your hair often. Even though these oils protect the paint and keep it from getting scratched, they are heavier than water and can leave a film if they sit on the car for a long time. I give the car one last rinse with water that flows freely (I take the nozzle off the hose), letting the water run off the car.
6. I recommend a spot treatment cleaner made with citrus for tough problems on your paint and on many other surfaces.
One example is P21S Total Auto Wash. It is the most powerful citrus-based cleaner you can use on your car without hurting it. You can use it straight up or mix it with water. If you use P21S Total Auto Wash at full strength, it will remove your wax, but it won’t hurt your paint (as harsh detergents can).
7. Use an insect remover to gently get rid of dried-on bugs, tar spots, and bird poop.
For more scrubbing power, use an insect scrub sponge with a mesh pattern.
What is the best way to dry your car?
Before you dry your car, you should give it a good rinse and make sure there is no dirt, grease, or oil that you can see. This is how:
1. Start at the top of the car and work your way down with a clean waffle weave drying towel or chamois. Move the towel or chamois in a straight line across the surface. Use the rough side of a natural chamois to dry the automobile.
2. Keep wiping until the surface is mostly dry, then finish drying with a dry microfiber towel or hand-sized waffle weave towel to get rid of any remaining droplets or streaks.
3. Dry your tires and wheels with a terry detailing towel. You shouldn’t use your chamois or good microfiber towels to clean the tires and wheels because they will get dirty.
4. Open the doors and dry the door sills and jambs with your microfiber detailing towel. Wipe under the door as well as along the edge of the door.
5. Open the trunk and hood and clean the jams and seals. Use your damp towel to wipe dust and light oil off the top of the engine and the surfaces of the engine compartment. Check your oil while the hood is open, and you have a towel handy. When you’re done working in the engine compartment, wash the dirty towel, and don’t use it on your car again until it’s clean.
If you hate drying as I do, you can use a special paint-safe squeegee to dry your car instead). The Water Blade gets rid of water completely in a small fraction of the time it takes to do the same thing with a chamois. Most paint-safe squeegees rub the paint less than a terry cloth towel does. On my windows and large flat surfaces, I use a paint-safe squeegee and then a waffle weave towel. It’s very quick and simple.
Is it good to dry your car after washing it?
No matter how gentle your car shampoo is or how long it’s been since you waxed your car, driving and washing your car, wear away the wax or sealant you put on it to protect it. I like to use a quick detailing spray on my car after washing it because of this. A good detailing spray brings back the shine you got when you just waxed and makes your wax or sealant last longer.
It’s very important to wash your car often if you want it to look good. Most people forget that there are some easy, quick things they can do to keep their new car looking new. When you wash your car, take a few extra minutes to clean the engine, door jams, and trunk. If you keep these areas clean, you won’t have to clean them up as much later. Getting a few good tools for detailing will make your job easier and more fun. Having good tools to wash and dry makes a huge difference.