If you don’t love your car- stop reading now. We mean it. Now. Stop reading. Go away.
For those who do love their cars- welcome. Welcome to our Detailing Diary, where we will present our techniques of maintaining your cars in perfect condition. You will find interesting posts about the perfect car caring steps to keep you and your horses happy. Remember: not only houses are men’s castles!
Because our Detailing Diary will be about the visual condition of cars, we start from the most simple and basic step - washing. And to put things straight, please keep in mind: the car's body is like our body skin, the wheels are like our shoes, and the windows are like our eyes. While washing, just imagine that your’e washing yourself. With such attitude towards this step, we guarantee the results of your work will be much better.
So, lets begin with our hand wash- the most effective way to make a car shine bright. You will need:
- 2 buckets
- Woollen hand mitt
- A couple of microfibre towels for drying and windows
- Professional car shampoos (one for pre washing and the other for the hand wash)
- An air blaster (if you have one)
- Wheel woolie
- Woolie brush
1. Start with the wheels. Hose down the dirt off the wheels first, spray or apply shampoo on them and let it soft and absorb the dirt for a minute. Then hose down again and repeat again with the shampoo. This time use a wheel woolie to reach the inner areas of the wheel where a lot of dirt gets together. Usually we don’t see this dirt, but it just as important to take it away as from the front side of the wheel. After you carefully and thoroughly worked on the wheels with the woolie, wash down the remaining dirt and do not touch the wheels again with pressured water till the end of the car washing.
2. Next you should hose the car down with pressured water. Don’t hurry in this phase as it is initial you soften the dirt and try to take most of it off the surface of the car. Never hold the hose to close to the car, keep it at a safe distance of up to a meter, depending on the surface. Start from the bottom, even though usually most people do it the other way around. But because we are talking about a detailers approach, we do bottoms up. Top to bottom means we push the dirt from the top over the dirt below, meaning it creates layers of it which can damage the surface on the way down. Thats why you should start from the bottom layer by layer. Do a panel of the car at a time. Hose movements should be horizontal on the sides and vertical on the top surfaces of the car.
3. After you thoroughly rinsed the car, find a foam gun to apply the first detergent shampoo to release the dirt from the surface of the car. Remember, the painted surface is like our skin, just rinsing won’t do, shampoo is initial. Apply the shampoo evenly on the surface and let it raise the dirt from the paint for about 2 minutes. While waiting, look carefully at the density of the shampoo you have just applied. If it turns liquid in 30 seconds and starts dripping off the car, the shampoo is usually isn’t rich with lubricant. Rinse down any shampoo or visible dirt of the car. Check the car for any big dirt marks in order to not scratch the paint in the next step.
4. This part is important and you will need to follow the rules of the 2 bucket hand wash. This is a safe way to prevent swirl marks all over the paint. Fill one bucket with soapy water and fill the other with clean water. We’ve all sorts of car shampoo’s, but the one we really like now is “Poorboy’s World Super Slick & Wax”. It gives a great smell, contains wax and really is super slick just as it says on the bottle. Check on the bottles how much shampoo and water you need. Use your wash mitt, as it doesn’t apply pressure on the surface like ordinary sponges. Dip the mitt in the soap water and start slowly “massaging” the car from the roof. Movements should be horizontal (from back window to front window). Don’t hurry, apply slowly not to miss a spot. Do half the roof and dip the mitt in the clear water to remove the grit and contamination you’ve just removed from the surface. Wash the car in pieces. Ideal if you dip the mitt in the clear water over 10 times per wash. Piece of advice: use 2 wash mitts. One for the upper part of the vehicle, and the second one for the lower part. Start from the roof and to the door handle level with the first mitt and below the handles with the second. There is much more dirt and grime below the handle, so best to have a separate mitt for that. While the car is covered in shampoo, use a wool brush to get the dirt out of narrow holes, such as door handles, grille, side mirrors and so on. But hurry up a bit not to let the car dry before you rinse it, otherwise you’ll have dry marks on the surface.
5. Next step: rinse the car thoroughly. Shampoo can sometimes be tricky to wash out, so you’ll need to spend some time rinsing. After, just pour some water on the car through a hose without pressure to neatly get rid of small drops and save some time during drying.
6. Drying - the part that attention is really needed. This is the only part where the car surface is not really like our skin anymore. Drying yourself with a towel and drying the cars surface is very different, so please be careful car lovers;) Best to use a air blaster to safely dry the car. If you don’t have one, use very soft microfibre towels only. Paper or some rubbery materials should not touch the cars surface. Don't press on the microfibre, just massage it from top to bottom of the car. Don't forget the door sills. And the pipes. And the spoilers. And the wheels. And everything else you forgot. Especially if its winter.
7. Windows- your only way to look out of the car. Always clean them. We use paper, it really takes all the dirt and grime away. CarPro Eraser is pretty good at clearing the windows and also leaves nice smell after applying. I hope you don’t think that we only use materials with good smells only, but it’s just pleasant:) Crystal clear glass is sign of good taste and style, just letting you fancy car lovers know. And its safer to drive that way.
So, dear horse loving power junkies, if you like to ride you better love riding clean!
So there you have the first basic steps of a clean car. Please do not forget some important details: do not wash the car under direct sun rays, do not wash it outside when its freaking cold, unless you want your icebox to stay there until spring, and most importantly- love your car!
Till next time, folks! Clean-o-Hol responsibly!