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Car cleaning/polishing advice

Discussion in 'Motors' started by Mike, 18 Jun 2006.

  1. Mike

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 1,731

    Location: Stoke

    I know some of you guys are knowledgable about this and OcUK sell good stuff so any help is appreciated.

    My poor little Porka hasn't had much of a life in terms of polishing since I've had it, in fact, it's never been done in my 18 months of ownership.

    Probably once a week she gets a wipe over at the local £4.00 hand wash but that's it. More noticeably now it has a plethora of tiny scratches and is starting to look a little dull.

    I want to spend some time on it and get it looking tip top, not expecting miracles but I know it could be so much nicer.

    So, any tips and advice as to polish/products/methods is much appreciated. I don't mind putting the effort in.
     
  2. Phil W

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 19 Oct 2002

    Posts: 9,945

    Location: Jupiter

    Meguiars Scratch X
    Meguiars Quik Clay
    Auto Glym Super Resin Polish

    = Winner (for me anyway)

    Here's just the scratch-x and polish (this weekend)

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Poppy

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 22 May 2004

    Posts: 1,182

  4. dynabol

    Gangster

    Joined: 24 Aug 2004

    Posts: 438

    Location: Chesterfield, UK

    I use the following on my MK3 Seat Ibiza, but am adding bits as I go along to replace used products :) :

    Turtle Wax Platinum Series Car Wash
    Meguiar's Deep Crystal System: Step 1 - Paint Cleaner
    Meguiar's ScratchX
    Zymöl Polish
    Car Plan Original Black

    To wash, apply, and buff up, I use the following:

    Halfords Sheepskin Mitt
    Meguiar's Foam Applicators
    Halfords Polishing Mitt (use this for rinsing)
    Meguiar's Water Magnet
    Microfibre cloths (used for buffing)
    Windowlene cream glass polish

    I've not got many pics of my car as I'm not too fussed about showing it off until I do a bit more work on it, but here's a quick shot of the driver's side after one go with the Deep Crystal Step 1 and a coat of Zymöl:

    [​IMG]

    I'm sure your Porka would look ten times better than my Ibiza though :)
     
  5. Firestar_3x

    Caporegime

    Joined: 11 Mar 2005

    Posts: 30,512

    Location: Leafy Cheshire

    For me its :

    Meg's NXT car wash
    Meg's Stage 1 Paint cleaner
    Autoglym Super Resin Polish
    Meg's NXT Wax
    Autoglym Extra Gloss Protection

    Meg's Gold Class Applicators
    Microfibre cloths
    Turtlewax blade

    Turns out alright :p

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Mike

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 1,731

    Location: Stoke

    Ok, quite a few different products used then.

    Any tips as to application?

    Any particular wait between "coats"?

    Light or hard rubbing? (Oooh err)
     
  7. FincH

    Mobster

    Joined: 24 Oct 2003

    Posts: 3,193

    Location: Club Skalva™

    Invest in some good quality products, as if you want your car to look nice, quality and care is the key.

    I personally use Auto Glym as all their stuff does what it says and gives very good results.

    Start off with some Auto Glym Car Shampoo in a bucket of hot water (make sure you clean the bucket out first) and also you can sue another bucket to clean your cleaning apparatus out with, but I tend not to.

    Anyway, hose down your car firstly with a hose (obviously) and agitate and big lumps of dirt and try to get as much excess crap of as you can.

    Then apply liberal amounts of your hot soapy water combo on the car using a lamb’s wool wash mitt. Don't use a sponge as these trap dirt particles and drag them along the paintwork and scratch it. A wash mitt can be bought from Halfords for £7.

    Start from the roof and down and make sure you clean all the glass, lift the wipers up, get in the mirrors etc etc but leave the wheels, also make sure you spray your wash mitt out from time to time to avoid dirt build up. You can also, using an old sponge get in around your arches and get down and clean your sills. Then rinse the car off using the hose.

    Next step, spray down the wheels like you would the bodywork and use a sponge (don't want to contaminate your mitt) to apply the hot soapy water. Then rinse the wheels off. You can also use a wheel cleaner, I use AutoGlym Engine and Machine Cleaner as it's powerful but non acidic. Now rinse off your wheels.

    Next step is to dry the car. Do this using a chamois, rinsing it and straining it regularly and get rid of all the excess water. This does two things; it gets rid of unsightly water marks and also gives you a nice dry base to wax/polish on.

    Apply Auto Glym Super Resin Polish using Meguiras application pads. Apply in a circular motion a panel at a time. Press harder on deep scratches and blemishes. Leave the polish to do its thing while you back to black any black trim with Auto Glym Bumper Care (applied using a cloth and buffed off using a clean cloth) and also Auto Glym Glass polish, on the inside out outside of your windows.

    Now remove the Polish using a polishing cloth. I've never experimented with polishing cloths and just use Halfords own, but I'm sure someone can suggest better ones. Anyway, buff off all the polish on the cars bodywork.

    If you want to take it a bit further you can apply Auto Glym Deep Gloss Shine. This is a liquid hard wax that needs to be applied in a VERY thin layer; otherwise it's a bitch to remove. This does give a slightly deeper shine and makes the car easier to clean.

    Finally use either Auto Glym Tyre Dresser or Bumper Care on your tyres to give them a nice black shine to them.

    All of these products are available from Halfords. Just take your time with it and don't be lazy (i.e. if you drop your mitt or cloths on the floor then throw them away as they'll be contaminated). Try and keep your wheel cleaning and bodywork separate as to avoid contamination. Also don't clean your car in direct sunlight or leave the polish/wax on too long.

    Anyway, give that a go and you'll deffo notice a difference.
     
  8. Mike

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 1,731

    Location: Stoke

    Thanks for taking the time to post that, I'll get this printed out, helps me a lot. :)
     
  9. Sadgeek

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 31 Jan 2004

    Posts: 1,445

    Location: Plymouth

    I haven't cleaned my car for so long now, as we have a hosepipe ban and the weather's just been too good :(

    Would I look overly anal if I used a small marquee to cover the car before and during the cleaning :p to help keep it cooler?

    (sorry for the hijack)