Much has been written about cleaning cars, and yet relatively few people seem to know how to do it properly, or care enough to even try.
To the experts, cleaning a car is called ‘detailing’.
I don’t claim to be an expert, but because I was keen to clean my cars to a high standard I have learnt a lot from research and experience, and because of this people often ask me questions about detailing their cars, so I have decided to share this information in a series of articles for my newsletter, the first of which was featured last month under the title Meguiar’s Mirror Bright Detailing Kit
To get the most from reading this series, and put my comments into perspective, you need to first read Meguiar’s Mirror Bright Detailing Kit
To maintain a car in a clean condition you need to be thorough – start at the beginning, and make sure you are washing it properly. The only skill you really need is patience – anything else can easily be learnt and perfected with practice!
I would recommend buckets with grit guards so that you do not drag the wash mitt on the bottom of the bucket and pick up the grit that has been previously removed from the car.
Use a good quality car shampoo.
NEVER wash a car with a sponge – the dirt sits on the surface of the sponge and acts like course sandpaper – use a sheepskin or microfibre wash mop, which pulls the grit away from the surface.
Keep two wash mitts and two drying towels – one for the upper part of the car, and one for the lower – the lower part of the car is always the dirtiest, and grit may be caught in exterior trim etc and be transferred to the drying towel, where it may damage paint – at least that way, you guard the paint on the upper part of the car.
I once refused to use anything but a natural chamois on my Jaguars, but was slowly won over by good quality synthetic chamois leathers (mainly because they are easier to use) although I always wondered if they were a bit like a sponge, and would scratch the paint if any grit was caught in them, and it was hard to get the ones with the perferations, which I preferred by far.
Recently, I discovered the Meguiar’s Water Magnet and there is no going back – keep them scrupulously clean and they suck up water magnificently! They can be thrown in the washing machine after every use (no fabric conditioner!) so you know they will be absolutely clean every time you use them.