Have you ever seen people using them brushes in self-serve car wash bays, and your heart breaks a little for their paint? This is a guide that explains how to give your bodywork the love it deserves!
1. Clean the wheels
Road grime and brake dust are the biggest killer of shiny, clean wheels. Your wheels collect grime and brake dust whenever you drive, and can often form a black coating over your wheels. Using a quality wheel cleaner can clean your wheels effectively, and return them to their former glory. We recommend using ‘Meguiars Ultimate All Wheel Cleaner’. This product will change colour as it starts to disintegrate the brake dust and grime, and does not need any agitation unless your wheels are heavily soiled. Check it out on the link below:
2. Rinse the car
Now it’s time to set up your pressure washer and start rinsing off the wheel cleaner. Apply a stream of water on the wheels to wash away the wheel cleaner and all the grime it has removed. After you’ve done this, rinse the entire car to get rid of as much contaminants as you can before you proceed to the next step.3. Foam Cannon Wash
A foam cannon is perfect for breaking down heavy dirt before hand washing. Apply the foam cannon from bottom to top, ensuring that you also cover the wheels and windows. Once applied, let the foam dwell on the car for a couple of minutes to ensure that you are maximising the effects of the foam wash. Rinse off the foam with a stream of water, and you are now ready for the next step. If your car is not too dirty, then you can finish off with the foam wash if you believe that a hand wash is not necessary. We recommend Meguiar’s products once again:
4. Hand wash
Now, for the most tiring part of the process. We will be talking about the ‘2 bucket method’ in this step as we believe it is an effective way to hand wash your car. Since the foam wash has loosened and washed away most of the heavy dirt, this reduces any chance of swirl marks or scratches forming. Fill 1 bucket with your desired car wash liquid + water mixture, and 1 bucket with clean water. You can use a sponge or microfiber wash mitt to apply the carwash mixture. Apply the mixture 1 panel at a time, ensuring that you are not applying too much pressure that could potentially scratch the paint. Move the mitt in small circular motions. Make sure that the surface is continually wet, otherwise you risk creating friction with your paint that could result in scratches. Keep working on the panels one by one, rinsing the wash mitt in the clean water bucket after every panel. This practice reduces the chances of dragging dirt along the paintwork, and allows the wash mitt to remain clean. After you have finished washing every panel, apply the pressure washer to the car to wash away all the soap. You are now ready for the next step.5. Drying
Using a soft, microfibre drying towel, dry the car panel by panel. Be sure to not apply too much pressure to the towel, and instead drag the towel along the paint work to avoid scratching the paint. Make sure to utilise both sides of the towel, flipping it whenever one side gets too wet. We recommend using Meguiar’s drying towel as it traps and lifts any contaminants, rather than dragging it along the paint work. You can also use a blow dryer to reduce your risk of scratching the paint. Links for both methods are below.
For more information on how to wash your car the correct way, check out this video below!