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Exterior Detailing> do it like a pro



I guess I take for granted the things I do in my shop, so I thought I would share my procedures with you. Detailing should not be complicate. There are these simple steps involved. Washing/claying/deep cleaning (polishing optional) and seal coating.

Proper washing is key, as this and the drying cycle is when most surface scratches are introduced to a finish. Pre soaking is also important. I like to use those garden sprayers like you would use for weed control. Put some all purpose cleaner in one (remember that all purpose cleaner is used only when you are doing ALL the steps involved in detailing; never use it for just the washing cycle. Work in the shade when ever possible. Spray the whole car with the pre soak. Tires, wheels the works. Using a power washer is good but if you don’t have one a hose will suffice. (Footnote on power washers. Anything stronger than 1500psi do this. Spray the wand away from the car. Where ever the fan of the water separates go in 4-5 inches, that is where the “safe” zone is for using it on your car) Now use a large bucket of water and car wash soap. You can buy whatever is on sale; most soaps vary in terms of price because of concentration only. Wash mitts of choice are Terri/ chenille/lambs wools/ and micro fiber. Stay away form any type of sponge these are all available at any auto parts store. I suggest doing the wheels first. You should have a wheel brush as well. Sometimes the wheels need more than all purpose cleaner, for that you should use my wheel cleaner, it will work away stubborn grease and dirt from your tires and wheels. Spray on and allow it to sit a few minutes, and then wash with the brush and rinse. You will be amazed how the dirt will melt away. Yes, it is a non acid based. Use your brush to clean the wheel wells also, as this can add to the enhancement of your car. Now change the bucket of soap and do the finish. Working from the top down wash as you normally do, taking notes of stubborn contaminants that won’t come off in the wash. Change the water bucket often as necessary. Now rinse the car. The next step is extremely important. Clay the car before you dry. (Read my instructions on claying on another post) after you clay, wash the car again to remove any clay residue. Now for drying. I use an electric leaf blower (don’t use a gas one) it will get water from behind emblems, door latches, molding and other areas water hides. For the final drying use a Waffle Weave Micro Fiber towel (found on my web site) Old school chamois can harm your finish due to the fact they don’t have recessed areas to hide dirt, so it can act like sandpaper. Now we are ready to inspect the car. This is where I meticulously go around the car looking for paint defects or imperfections. Clay removes surface contaminants; deep cleaners remove blemishes IN the finish. For example, if you have hard water on your car, when it if just introduced, it can be removed with clay. (Because it is still ON the finish.)If it is allowed to sit, it will “etch” into the finish. For this you need deep cleaners. (I have one on my web site) Mine also has a dual purpose, cleaner and polish. So not only will it clean the surface but it will bring back shine /luster to the finish. Sometimes the finish will have major defect that requires more aggressive products/procedures. I might use the high speed buffer on a section that needs it. Seldom if ever does the entire finish need the high speed unless the car was not maintained for over 10 years. Once I clean up the areas I need to with machines, I use my paint cleaner.

To use it simply put some on an applicator pad and work into the finish using a side to side motion. Work small sections at a time; remove excess with a micro fiber towel. No not all MF are created equal. Check my web site for what I found to be the best quality around. After the paint cleaner your finish should be prepped so it would be ready for the final application. The debate on wax and sealants is on going. My opinion is backed by the experts. A synthetic sealant will out last any wax up to six times as long. Most people don’t know that the best wax on the market will last 30 days on a driver car. So it makes sense to use a synthetic. The sealant I sell is the same one I use on ALL the high end sports, exotic and everyday cars I get in my shop. Since people trailer cars in from out of state to my shop, I must be doing something right. All you do to use my sealant is apply a thin layer with a foam pad, allow to sit for 15-20 minutes. Proceed to remove with a Micro fiber towel. You won’t believe how east it comes off. Put a layer of the sealant on your wheels for added protection. Gary .

 

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Thanks

Great article, Gary. I finally got around to sending you my (large) order. Just wondering, tho, what "all purpose cleaner" is. Is it something like formula 409 or is it soap?
 

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correct, it is 409 or simple green.



LinenGoldC said:
Great article, Gary. I finally got around to sending you my (large) order. Just wondering, tho, what "all purpose cleaner" is. Is it something like formula 409 or is it soap?
 

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Thanks, Gary.

The temp got up to the 60s today in the northeast, so I detailed the exterior. However, since I didn't get started until ~1:30 PM and the sun sets a 4, I was only able to wash, clay and seal the body of my 300C. (I also got a chance to seal the chrome after the sun set. I've had problems with the acid rain etching the rear view mirrors on my old Stratus before, so I wanted to get some protection on the chrome.)

Should I have paint sealed the plastic facias, too? Should I have clayed them? I just don't know if the weather will give me a chance to do these.
 

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LinenGoldC said:
Thanks, Gary.

The temp got up to the 60s today in the northeast, so I detailed the exterior. However, since I didn't get started until ~1:30 PM and the sun sets a 4, I was only able to wash, clay and seal the body of my 300C. (I also got a chance to seal the chrome after the sun set. I've had problems with the acid rain etching the rear view mirrors on my old Stratus before, so I wanted to get some protection on the chrome.)

Should I have paint sealed the plastic facias, too? Should I have clayed them? I just don't know if the weather will give me a chance to do these.
You can clay any painted surface/ chrome/glass/plastic as long as it is cleared/ only material you can't clay is rubber/molded or unfinished plastic. You can also seal the same areas. Gary
 

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as a Suppoetting Vendor is the price on your websight a discount or is the price anyone can buy from you? Let me know i'm interested in alot of your products [email protected]
 
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