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Car Cleaning Rituals

What's yours? Favorite products? Methods? Etc.

I like to give it a good soak to loosen everything up. Currently using Blue Coral wash and wax as it was a Christmas gift and it actually does a nice job. Usually like the meguiars gold class wash though. Always a microfiber mitt with a few passes on the car then spray it out to rid it of contaminants before dipping it back in the bucket and continuing to clean




Every so often I use meguiars cleaner wax which really provides an extra step towards keeping the paint nice.

I usually finish off with meguiars next generation tech wax 2.0 for a nice glossy finish.

Interior is dusted with a swiffer cloth and microfiber towels are used to apply meguiars ultimate protectant to the dash and interior.

Meguiars ultimate black on any outside plastic parts.

Turtle wax leather cleaner and protectant on the seats.

Windex on glass

Other than vacuuming and such that's about it for interior.

No touch wet and protect for tire dressing.

Lengthy post but hopefully there are others out there that are willing to share their tips and methods for keeping their vehicles looking good and protected from all the things they face on daily commutes.
 



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MONMIX

I fix dents
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Full on cleaning for me was about 6 hours. I did it every month or so or on show days.
Other than that it was a regular wash every other day, inside and out and underneath.

The full on would be remove the seats and shampoo the carpets and seats. Polish the plastics what not with Meguairs protectant. Every nook and cranny. I would use about twenty or so q-tips and four or five sponge brushes. Clean interior glass with Invisible Glass. Brush the suede.

On to the outside, lay on my back and liberally spray the whole undercarriage, wheel houses and engine bay with Simple Green ( diluted 50/50 ) Spray the wheels with Meguiars Wheel Cleaner. Use a toilet brush to get to the back side of the rims. Rinse everything. Pat dry engine parts with an "engine only" chamois.

Buff windshield with #0000 steel wool.

Wash entire vehicle with Dawn using two buckets. Rinse. Use compressed air to blow out all the cracks and jambs. Make up two new buckets one with Dawn and a gallon of distilled water and another one with clean distilled water. Clay Bar each panel one at a time using the Dawn soap water to lube, but rinsing with a clean water sponge. Dry with a clean chamois. Always washing and drying in one direction. ( No, not the band ) The two washing processes use two different sheep's wool sponges.

Eat lunch.

Apply one of Zaino Z-5, going in one direction only. Remove Z-5 going in same direction.

Apply one coat of Zaino Z-2. Same direction. Remove.
Apply Z-2 to door jambs and some under hood components. Spray underhood hoses and plastics with Meguiars Protectant.
Spray underhood chrome with Invisible Glass.

Clean all exterior glass with Invisible Glass.

Apply final coat of Zaino Z-2 and remove with Z-8 misting on a new microfiber towel.

Dress tires with Meguiars endurance.
Dress exterior plastics with Meguiars Protectant.
Mist the exterior with Z-8 as needed.

That was it.

Other days it was just vacuuming the inside, cleaning the glass, wiping down the plastics.
Washing the outside with Meguiars Gold class, using two buckets, and its own sheep's wool sponge. Drying with a chamois. Spaying out the wheel houses. Gleaning the glass.

Yeah I was a little sick.
Click below on "My Explorer" for pics and details.
 






mbushnell

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Spent about 6 hours yesterday cleaning & waxing the outside of my 2016 Explorer Sport.
Used Meguiars All Wheel cleaner on the Wheels & Tires, Griots Car Wash on the Body & Meguiars Cleaner/Wax on the sheet metal. Used Black Magic on the exterior plastic & Invisible Glass, followed by Rain-X on the windows.
 






16GT17EXPShadowblk

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Full on cleaning for me was about 6 hours. I did it every month or so or on show days.
Other than that it was a regular wash every other day, inside and out and underneath.

The full on would be remove the seats and shampoo the carpets and seats. Polish the plastics what not with Meguairs protectant. Every nook and cranny. I would use about twenty or so q-tips and four or five sponge brushes. Clean interior glass with Invisible Glass. Brush the suede.

On to the outside, lay on my back and liberally spray the whole undercarriage, wheel houses and engine bay with Simple Green ( diluted 50/50 ) Spray the wheels with Meguiars Wheel Cleaner. Use a toilet brush to get to the back side of the rims. Rinse everything. Pat dry engine parts with an "engine only" chamois.

Buff windshield with #0000 steel wool.

Wash entire vehicle with Dawn using two buckets. Rinse. Use compressed air to blow out all the cracks and jambs. Make up two new buckets one with Dawn and a gallon of distilled water and another one with clean distilled water. Clay Bar each panel one at a time using the Dawn soap water to lube, but rinsing with a clean water sponge. Dry with a clean chamois. Always washing and drying in one direction. ( No, not the band ) The two washing processes use two different sheep's wool sponges.

Eat lunch.

Apply one of Zaino Z-5, going in one direction only. Remove Z-5 going in same direction.

Apply one coat of Zaino Z-2. Same direction. Remove.
Apply Z-2 to door jambs and some under hood components. Spray underhood hoses and plastics with Meguiars Protectant.
Spray underhood chrome with Invisible Glass.

Clean all exterior glass with Invisible Glass.

Apply final coat of Zaino Z-2 and remove with Z-8 misting on a new microfiber towel.

Dress tires with Meguiars endurance.
Dress exterior plastics with Meguiars Protectant.
Mist the exterior with Z-8 as needed.

That was it.

Other days it was just vacuuming the inside, cleaning the glass, wiping down the plastics.
Washing the outside with Meguiars Gold class, using two buckets, and its own sheep's wool sponge. Drying with a chamois. Spaying out the wheel houses. Gleaning the glass.

Yeah I was a little sick.
Click below on "My Explorer" for pics and details.


Much respect. Now thats how you clean a vehicle. I'll check out the pictures for sure. I've never tried the simple green but I know people who swear by the stuff for multiple different uses. I will usually go through the touchless wash to get the underside of the vehicle but there's no way it does as good a job as the process you described. I appreciate the response as I'm always looking for different or better ways to keep the contaminants off of every part of the vehicle. I like the one direction method of on off (not the band like you said) as I always try to minimize swirling motions or different directions when in contact with the surface of the vehicle. I have used the invisible glass and still have a can or two lying around so maybe I should go back to using that. I'll have to try the windshield method you described since that's an area of the vehicle not always given the care it deserves. Lastly the clay barring is something I've not done before but I think it's a step worth adding as I see how well it works in removing contaminants from the vehicle.
 






16GT17EXPShadowblk

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Spent about 6 hours yesterday cleaning & waxing the outside of my 2016 Explorer Sport.
Used Meguiars All Wheel cleaner on the Wheels & Tires, Griots Car Wash on the Body & Meguiars Cleaner/Wax on the sheet metal. Used Black Magic on the exterior plastic & Invisible Glass, followed by Rain-X on the windows.


Is the Griots you're preferred product for washing? I've never tried it but I know a lot of people really like their products. Meguiars products are everywhere and I've never really been disappointed with them so that's why I've usually stuck with those, but I'm always looking for something new to try.
 






mbushnell

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Is the Griots you're preferred product for washing? I've never tried it but I know a lot of people really like their products. Meguiars products are everywhere and I've never really been disappointed with them so that's why I've usually stuck with those, but I'm always looking for something new to try.
Yes it is.
I've been using Griots ever since I bought my 2003 BMW 325xiT in November, 2002. I buy the 1 gallon jug of Car Wash & also have the hand pump that goes into the jug. Depending on how dirty the car is, I'll put either 2 or 3 shot of car wash into the bucket. Very easy to regulate how much car wash you use.
 






FordBird

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Used Black Magic on the exterior plastic & Invisible Glass, followed by Rain-X on the windows.

I also love Rain-X and enjoy driving when it rains and those drops escape upwards. I've been using Rain-X for several years already, and I must say it's really cool...
 






Josh P

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The paint on my cars is shot so the bath the body gets is pretty quick. I take my wheels off and clean the back sides of the rims. I spend the most time cleaning the engine, valve covers leak a little.
 






IIGood

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For the Explorer, I'll take it through a car wash when it gets dirty enough.

For the Mustang...well, lately it hasn't been much (the clearcoat on the hood and roof have failed) but in it's prime, a "quick" bath would still involve the 2-bucket method, a nice soft wash mitt of some sort...if the mitt/sponge touched the ground, it went in the trash. Then dried with an Absorber, in every nook and cranny...open the trunk, door jams, etc. Wheels got wiped good with a small sponge, even down into the lug nut wells. Tires were scrubbed with a tire brush.

If it was time for a wax or polish, I'd do that. For a while it was Zaino...but last time I did a wax I used Meguiar's Gold Class.
 






Eltee

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Full on cleaning for me was about 6 hours. I did it every month or so or on show days. Glass.

...

Dress exterior plastics with Meguiars Protectant.

Are you putting this on pristine weathered plastic and how long between applications? The black, plastic on my bumpers is weathered and I'm looking for a solution. Thanks for sharing your cleaning processes.
 






MONMIX

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Are you putting this on pristine weathered plastic and how long between applications? The black, plastic on my bumpers is weathered and I'm looking for a solution. Thanks for sharing your cleaning processes.
I did it a few times a week. Nothing on my Explorer ever got weathered.
That said I did use it on other vehicles, and it does have some restorative properties.
 






Eddie Bee

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I use Croftgate products. At a Foxtoberfest I borrowed a bottle to try it and it made a difference on our 93 LX's old paint, easy to use and a little bit went a long way. Been using the products ever since and haven't had any issues. All my cars sit outside so I try to preserve them best I can.

I use the regular wash and wax at home and the Aquanil to detail at shows. They use a 2 microfiber cloth system.
I use the trim restorer on my Bronco's exterior faded rubber parts and it helped a lot.

Eddie Bee looked to have been used as a parts runner by his previous owner so there was a lot of grease and dirt on the carpets, seats,panels etc. The Multiclean took out all of the dirt and 90% of the grease marks. I followed that up with the trim restorer on all the panels, dash and console and the interior looks and smells nice.

I also replaced the smoker's package with a regular console, got newer looking rubber mats and the trim restorer brought them back to looking almost new.I haven't yet tried the leather cleaner and conditioner but plan to try it on my seats as they are cracked. I figure it can't hurt. Eventually I will need to recover them.
 






fatboyO

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As some know by now, just got my New 2017 Ex and started thinking about detailing it like I used to do many years ago... used to use lots of mothers and mcquires, tooth picks, q tips a sheepskin wash glove for upper body and a cheaper one for lower body panels and wheels.

Always washed in the direction of the lines of the car, not in circles and only after car was thorough wet down with running water and not sprayed....and washed top to bottom.... then dried with a real chamois.

Thanks for posting your particulars as it brings back plenty of memories and gives me some great new ideas.

Thanks everyone!
 






fatboyO

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Well folks, the new Ex have almost 300 kms on it and has been sitting in my garage for the most part of the last 2weeks... still have my Riv and keep driving it as it's been raining/snowing ... overall crappy outside for the most part.

So the Ex is dirty and the rust proofing has almost finished dropping out and has run along plastic parts near bottom of vehicle.

Starting to get the itch to wash it.. ideally by hand outside, but having a shortage of time and warm weather starting to eye the touch less car washes at Petro-Can...here in Ontario.

Seems logical, but I also remember that washing a dirty vehicle with a power washer Or what amounts to be a power washer type of car wash isn't a good idea... it's almost like sandblasting your paint's finish with the dirt on the paint...I know the best is to wet your vehicle with gentle running water (not spray) from a hose and then washing with soft mit etc and rinsing with gentle water... any thoughts?

I've done it before on older vehicles and even regular car washes without issues... but want to kept this one as prestine for as long as I can....what do you guys think?
 






Vink70

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Im picking up a new to me 2016 Sport in Magnetic Metallic on Friday. Planning to detail it fully on Saturday at work. Ill do a full write up on materials as well as products if I remember. It will take most of my day up.

Strictly a 2 bucket wash with grit guards. I also use Adam's Products. Its a personal preference but I have been happy with them and the products. To each their own. Adam's Polishes | Premium Car Care Supplies

I will definitely try to do a before and after. I also told the dealership not to wash it... I know they would wash it and scrub it causing more damage than me washing it myself. Stay tuned!
 






lincolnlocker

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just looking
What's yours? Favorite products? Methods? Etc.

I like to give it a good soak to loosen everything up. Currently using Blue Coral wash and wax as it was a Christmas gift and it actually does a nice job. Usually like the meguiars gold class wash though. Always a microfiber mitt with a few passes on the car then spray it out to rid it of contaminants before dipping it back in the bucket and continuing to clean




Every so often I use meguiars cleaner wax which really provides an extra step towards keeping the paint nice.

I usually finish off with meguiars next generation tech wax 2.0 for a nice glossy finish.

Interior is dusted with a swiffer cloth and microfiber towels are used to apply meguiars ultimate protectant to the dash and interior.

Meguiars ultimate black on any outside plastic parts.

Turtle wax leather cleaner and protectant on the seats.
Car wash laurel md
Windex on glass

Other than vacuuming and such that's about it for interior.

No touch wet and protect for tire dressing.

Lengthy post but hopefully there are others out there that are willing to share their tips and methods for keeping their vehicles looking good and protected from all the things they face on daily commutes.
Hi everyone,

I am completely new to the world of detailing. I have a black F30 which I would like to keep looking nice!

yes I have checked for older threads, but the most recent is 2012?!

What products would I need to keep my paint gleaming?

thank you!
 






Fix4Dirt

Get a Load O' This Guy!
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Hi everyone,

I am completely new to the world of detailing. I have a black F30 which I would like to keep looking nice!

yes I have checked for older threads, but the most recent is 2012?!

What products would I need to keep my paint gleaming?

thank you!
f30 as in............. ferrari???? POST UP PICS!!!!!!!!!!!

ok that being said, i will send you a PM! if anyone else wants the same info just PM me.
 






Rick

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Hi everyone,

I am completely new to the world of detailing. I have a black F30 which I would like to keep looking nice!

yes I have checked for older threads, but the most recent is 2012?!

What products would I need to keep my paint gleaming?

thank you!

I no longer wash my cars with water. I spray this product on the vehicles and use a microfiber towel to polish:

Amazon product

I use this product to protect the paint:

Amazon product
 






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