If you really care about the exterior of your car, don’t let the quickie car washes with the big brushes harm your car’s surface. It is better for you to spend a bright morning to do a DIY car wash that will give you the best result. To keep the car shiny and clean like its brand new condition, most people prefer to choose a wash and wax for achieving their goals. If you love your car and want to keep its flawless paintwork, you should know a few other things except washing and wax it. Regarding the needs for car’s maintenance, we got some helpful tips from Mike Pennington and also Rick McDonough of Meguiars to wash and maintain a clean car’s exterior. Here is the summary consisting of nine steps to wash your car like a pro.
- Before starting the car wash, make sure that you have evaluated its condition to steer you towards how you should clean it. For a new car or the one that already comes with a good coat of wax on it, probably a wash and wax are enough to maintain it. If your vehicle has an average or neglected exterior, you may need to clean and polish it as well for the best maintenance.
- Read the label and find out how to use it correctly. It is a must before you start using any type of car cleaning chemical to know the proper application of the items. The use of wax, soap, or detailer can vary from car to car and brand to brand. For a better result, it is recommended to invest in premium microfiber clothes and keep separate piles for those used on your car’s paint, windows, and wheels. Don’t forget to wash the towels and cleaning mitts after use.
- Now, wash the car by yourself. Keep in mind that cleaning a vehicle will remove loose contaminants like dust, and mud from the car’s exterior. If you want to get the best result as you wish, a car washing soap is the best option. We don’t recommend a liquid detergent or dish cleaner because these choices can damage the car’s paint and strip away wax. Start the washing process by rinsing the car first to remove any larger piece of dirt that potentially causes scratches when washing.
- Remove the stain from the paint after washing the entirely part of the car. It would be easy for you to see scratches, swirls, and maybe oxidations in the paint. Try to feel for bonded contaminants like overspray or tree sap that can’t be removed by washing it. You can run your hand over a cleaned surface to find such a little bumps, then go a step further to clean your car. You can use a clay bar for this stain removal. It will simply remove everything from the surface of the vehicle including wax. It will also restore smoothness to the paint. For using the clay bar, you can start by kneading it into a flat wafer and then use a detailer as a lubricant. Now, hold it in the palm of one hand and then run it across the surface of the car. If you find scratches and etching below the surface, you can use a compound for the solution. You can apply them by hand using applicator pads or a dual-action polisher after that wiped away soon after the application. A compound paint cleaner that we mentioned here usually needs to be worked into the finish, and sometimes it requires a 2nd, 3rd, or 4th application.
- For optional step, you can apply polish by hand or with a dual-action polisher. The conditioning oils of polish add depth of color and even maximum gloss before waxing, especially for a car with dark colors.
- Now, the step for waxing. This optional step adds a layer of protection from UV rays to prevent fading or any other things that may land on the paint. Besides that, it can preserve the high gloss finish. Wax is available in several different forms like liquid, paste, and spray. You need to find out the weaknesses and strengths of each type of wax to know the right kind that you need for your car.
- After we have done with all work of washing, cleaning and even protecting the car, now move to the next step in maintaining its appearance. Take a spray detailer and clean microfiber cloth in the trunk for removing dust, overspray, and bird droppings quickly. You can take the alternative step of a one-step cleaner wax if your car is relatively clean. You can clean, polish, and protect the vehicle in one product after washing it.
- It is time to clean the windows. We are not recommending such a household glass cleaners because they contain ammonia which can cause damage to the car’s window tint. It is better to choose an auto window cleaner for the best result.
- The last step is washing the wheels. We want to share the latest tips to clean the wheels using a product that has been specifically formulated for the type of your wheel. If you are not sure with the kind of your wheels, it is better for you to take a product that is formulated for all kind of wheels which is an acid-free pH balanced.